Washington Post report blasted for stating ‘the obvious’ about benefits of exercise on COVID 2 years later

A Washington Post report revealing that exercise reduces the risk of contracting a fatal case of COVID-19 was mocked online Wednesday for “confirming the obvious” while vindicating critics who opposed gym closures throughout the pandemic.

In a piece titled “Regular exercise protects against fatal COVID, a new study shows,” Washington Post health columnist Gretchen Reynolds cited what she called an “eye-opening study” that found that exercise, even in the smallest amount, greatly reduced the risk of contracting a severe coronavirus infection.

“Men and women who worked out at least 30 minutes most days were about four times more likely to survive covid-19 than inactive people,” Reynolds wrote, adding that “even people who worked out for as little as 11 minutes a week — yes, a week — experienced lower risks of hospitalization or death from COVID than those who moved about less.”


The study, which was published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine, examined the impact of physical inactivity on COVID-19 outcomes. 

The findings, Reynolds wrote, “add to mounting evidence that any amount of exercise helps lower the ferocity of coronavirus infections.”

The Washington Post column did not sit well with critics on Twitter, who blasted the outlet for taking several years to confirm what most of the public had known since the pandemic’s onset. Others pointed to the column as vindication for gym owners who defied lockdowns to keep their businesses open at the height of the outbreak.

Jason Nichols, facilities operation manager, disinfects equipment at the Life Time Biltmore as it opens for business after being closed due to the coronavirus Monday, May 18, 2020, in Phoenix. 

Jason Nichols, facilities operation manager, disinfects equipment at the Life Time Biltmore as it opens for business after being closed due to the coronavirus Monday, May 18, 2020, in Phoenix. 
(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin))


“I’m repeating myself, but we’re in for like 20 more years of Covid studies like these confirming the obvious,” The Washington Free Beacon’s Chuck Ross wrote.

“You guys, per usual, are right on top of things. Great work,” journalist Paul Thacker remarked.

“We knew this. Staying active and a nutritious diet leads to good health and a robust immune system. Florida has been saying this from the beginning, even when it wasn’t popular or acceptable among the public health establishment, Ron DeSantis’ press secretary, Bryan Griffin responded.

“Hey, @ChristinaPushaw… remember when the left said you were “fat shaming” when you pointed this out two years ago?” Ron DeSantis’ deputy press secretary Jeremy Redfern chimed in.

“Ban gyms or mandate everyone wear masks in them,” Townhall columnist Derek Hunter reminded users.

“Was it the exercise doing it, or was it that people who exercise are generally more healthy? Bet it’s the latter,” podcaster Noam Blum quipped.

Former Capitol police officer Chris Palombi responded to the purported “New study” with a laughing emoji.

“Yet the government and health directors neglected the importance of exercise and health by shutting down gyms, pools, and rec centers all in the name of $cience™,” he wrote.


“This used to be a conspiracy theory,” conservative commentator Harrison Krank agreed.

Atilis Gym co-owner Ian Smith

Atilis Gym co-owner Ian Smith
(Fox News)

Other users called on New Jersey gym owner, Ian smith, who was arrested for reopening in defiance of Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy’s stay-at-home order, to take legal action against the state.

Smith emphasized in multiple Fox News appearances that Americans aren’t any healthier because of public health guidance, and blamed misguided public health policies for contributing to the obesity crisis in the U.S.

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