CrossFit MTS closed on 20 March due to the coronavirus pandemic but continues to provide support to members, including key workers and Heriot’s Rugby Club players.
Former Heriot’s captain Jamie Syme started his business in Broughton, at 10 Beaverhall Yard, a decade ago and has trained many Goldenacre players and teams since.
After lock down began Jamie and colleague Michael ‘Chicken’ Liness, who plays for the Heriot’s Rugby Super6 franchise, planned how to deliver the best service to members without a gym.
After the gym had been closed for a weekend, members were able to book a 15-minute slots to collect some equipment, such as barbells.
Up to 30 key workers and about 15 Heriot’s players were prioritised access to equipment to continue their training. Alternative exercises are available to members with limited access to equipment.
‘‘We froze all memberships as people couldn’t access the gym so there is no point paying for something you can’t use,’’ Jamie said.
Michael co-ordinated the collection of equipment for members as Jamie had sold his house days before lock down and was staying with his family at his late father’s house Isle of Tiree.
The sale of the house was part of a planned move to Australia in early June, which has now been postponed.
Both Jamie and Michael remain in personal contact with their clients as the sessions at CrossFit MTS provide members with a physical and mental outlet.
‘’We take calls from our members every day. Our members talk to us, we are trying to help as best we can during lock down,’’ Jamie said.
Jamie admits it is frustrating having an empty gym that can’t be used as financial pressure builds despite support from a small government grant and the landlord deferring rent. He hopes that by August or September the gym may be able to reopen.
‘‘We will be touch and go, we have bills that still need to be paid,’’ he said.
‘‘The last three months there have been no wages. There have been donations from members and a handful of our members are still working and wanted to continue to pay their memberships.’’
Workouts continue to be posted on the CrossFit MTS website and Facebook and Instagram channels with Michael holding weekly ‘Catch Up with Chicken’ live streams for members who have any questions.
Jamie said anyone who wishes to join the gym are able to sign up at no cost and begin learning about CrossFit in preparation for the gym opening.
‘‘I think we have picked up about 12 potential new members who have made enquiries about joining the gym,’’ Jamie said.
‘‘Once we have the green light to open, we already have social distancing mapped out in the gym. We have a plan to get back to some sort of normality.’’