The appeal of women-only gyms

Anke Neustadt

There is an interesting development within the fitness world: the rise of women-only gyms and workout areas. And social media users have been highlighting it in a big way. While they’re not necessarily a new trend, women’s fitness clubs and designated workout areas have been receiving significant attention on TikTok, Instagram, and SnapChat lately with the hashtag #WomensOnlyGym.

Working out at the gym while blasting motivational music is an addictively rewarding process that builds one’s confidence. However, when women are in their zone while working out at the gym, some are gawked at, approached for unnerving conversations, or even given unsolicited workout advice, ultimately creating a tense atmosphere. Women-only gyms should become commonplace because every woman deserves a place where they can work out comfortably without fear or apprehension, in a space free of judgment, intimidation and anxiety.

“Unfortunately, I think all women have experienced this at some point, in some way,” says Helena Hijazi, CEO and Founder of women’s only gym, FitNglam. “I’ve spoken to a lot of women about this. It’s a big part of the reason we started FitnGlam – to provide all women with a safe space to focus on themselves.”

While some encounter unwanted attention in mixed gyms, others feel comfortable because they can dress as they wish without being conscious even if it means looking like a hot mess if they choose to. “This is definitely a benefit at women-only clubs,” says Hijazi. “It’s what a lot of members love about FitnGlam. It is a judgement-free space, with no pressure to look or dress a certain way.”

Women-only gyms also allow women to connect, network and build a support group. Some women who may be new to the gym culture could be inspired by certified trainers or other experienced gym goers, who in turn can teach and push them to be the best active and healthy version of themselves.

With social media being the rage, it also helps motivate others with Insta-worthy pictures. “We love and embrace social media,” says Hijazi. “Our club is built for it, with art installations and works by regional female artists that breathe life into the space. However, we want to break any stereotypes of female aesthetic in fitness, so our club is fully equipped with all types of equipment, more than most mixed gyms. Privacy is the top priority for members. Our entire team is female, and no one can see in from the outside.”

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