In June Benefit Systems, the organiser of the MultiSport Programme, intends to allocate over PLN 4 million as financial support for sports facilities resuming their operations after the epidemic. In the first month after defrosting the economy, Benefit Systems will pay an additional amount to facilities that will open in accordance with sanitary guidelines by June 15. This is another form of support implemented by Benefit Systems for sports partners of the MultiSport Programme.
Under the MultiSport Programme Benefit Systems currently cooperates with 4,600 sports facilities from all over Poland. The company supports independent clubs through loans for the creation and modernisation of sports infrastructure. Between 2016 and 2020, it granted loans amounting to almost PLN 45 million. As a result, 35 new facilities were created, and 204 facilities were modernised. This provided 36,000 square metres of new workout area.
– For years we have felt co-responsible for supporting the development of sports infrastructure in Poland and for the facilities cooperating with us. Obtaining bank loans in our industry is difficult, that is why we provide our sports partners with financial support for their infrastructure development. During the pandemic, we suspended all loan instalment repayments, being aware of the difficult situation in which the entire industry found itself. Since June we have been introducing a payment system for the service of the MultiSport Programme in two-week cycles to accelerate financial flows and support the liquidity of our partners. We also made payments during the closing period, because during the pandemic we enabled the settlement of virtual visits of our card users under the MultiSport Programme. Several hundreds of facilities used this opportunity. Due to the upcoming summer season and increasingly prettier weather, encouraging to exercise outdoors, we also intend to settle outdoor activities conducted by our partners under the programme. We will inform about the details of this solution soon – adds Wojciech Szwarc.
Sports and recreation facilities, including fitness clubs, gyms, and swimming pools, will be able to resume operations on June 6. In accordance with the guidelines of the Chief Sanitary Inspectorate, wearing masks while working out will not be necessary. People training in clubs will be able to use changing rooms, toilets, and showers, with the clubs being obliged to increase the frequency of disinfection. Air circulation in the facilities is also to be increased. A limited number of people will be able to stay in the fitness clubs to meet the requirement of not exceeding the number corresponding to 1 person per 10 square metres of space. Both in the common areas and in the gyms, everyone will have to maintain a social distance of 2 metres. According to the regulation, it is customers that must disinfect equipment in gyms and fitness clubs before and after its use.
– In gyms and fitness clubs there has been a principle of regular disinfection of equipment for years. In connection with the restrictions introduced, it will include expendable exercise equipment, or every second machine turned off. Additional signs will also be installed, showing the distance on the floors and reminding people using the facilities to use disinfectant fluids. The facilities will also probably increase the number of stands with accessories for disinfecting equipment. We are in constant contact with our partners. Together we discuss the issues of sanitary guidelines and share good practices in this area. We believe that we will be ready for the return of Poles in needof physical activity – explains Wojciech Szwarc.
Benefit Systems has experience in activating Poles – through the MultiSport Programme it significantly increased the demand for sports and recreation services. Before the pandemic, the programme cards were used by 1.2 million users in Poland. According to the company's estimates, more than half of them are people who have never exercised in sports and recreation facilities before. It is thanks to, among others systematically implemented activities aimed at promoting a healthy lifestyle and sports activity. Benefit Systems also invests in the development of the industry by financing training and educational programmes that provide professional knowledge to people running sports facilities. Over 300 people have already benefited from ICAN Institute expert training, providing specialist knowledge in the field of facility management. Over 1,300 people have gained managerial knowledge within the MultiSport Academy, over 340 people took part in the SAFETY First training, and 280 people trained in GIODO regulations. As support for partner clubs, Benefit Systems has also been providing a specialised music service for years, which is regularly used by over 400 facilities.
Benefit Systems S.A. has been operating on the Polish market since 2001. The company created the MultiSport sports and recreation programme, which supports an active and healthy lifestyle of its users. Sports cards provide access to more than 4,600 sports and recreation facilities in over 650 cities throughout the country. The Company’s sports offer is also successfully implemented in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Bulgaria, and Croatia. An important area of Benefit Systems activities is promoting an active lifestyle at every stage of life, which is why the Company undertakes initiatives to encourage physical activity among children, adults, and seniors.