There has been a noticeable decline in the number of women joining the gym in the last 12 months. Not just at 24/7 Fitness, we are hearing the same thing across the entire industry.
The question is why?
I googled it expecting to find a new trend for ladies training outside or some booty related craze that involves exercise somewhere other than the gym. No. Just article after article on ‘Gymintimidation’ and why men make women feel uncomfortable in the gym environment. I even read a hilarious quote from Ellie Goulding stating that she gets stared at and judged by men for exercising. Seriously. You get stared at because you are Ellie Goulding! I bet the same thing happens at the supermarket. News flash. You are famous. I’m pretty sure if Ellie Goulding rocked up in my gym I’d have a sneaky peak.
I find it hugely disappointing and slightly irritating that men are being used as the main excuse for females avoiding the gym. I refuse to buy into this portrayal of women being the timid trembling little victim while men are huge gorilla-like sex pests. It’s bull. I have lived the last 25 years of my life in the gym and this is so far from my experience I cannot take it seriously, so let’s address some misconceptions.
Men stare at and judge women if they dare to go into the free weights area. False. It is a fact that the freeweight area is dominated by men, just as the studio is dominated by women. The fact is men and women are different and like different things. So women if you find yourself the only female in the freeweight area and some of the guys glance your way it’s because: a) Let’s face it you are a novelty, trust me it’s nothing compared to the reaction you get as the only male in a Zumba class.
b) The look they are giving you is respect.
I spend a lot of time in the freeweight area and guys like to see women in there. Strength is our thing and we want everyone, yes even women, to join in.
Body insecurities are real, we all have them. Muscle is pretty useless in the modern world, bulky impractical and expensive to maintain. The only reason guys work so hard to build muscle is because they are battling their own insecurities, muscle makes us look good and feel good and hopefully make us more attractive to the opposite sex.
Guys are far more brutal judging other guys than they ever would be judging women and I suspect women are the same.
In summary, ladies please do not allow victim culture to stop you from looking after your health. Exercise is good. Most men are too busy battling their own insecurities to judge you.
Get in there, mix it up and show the guys you are strong. Trust me they are far more scared of you than you are of them.
Come back to the gym, it’s good for you and we miss you.
It doesn’t matter if you are a man or a women, if you are smoking hot you are going to get stared at. Lucky you. The rest of us have limited sympathy.