Though the existence of female-only gyms have caused controversy whenever they pop up, there are stories all the time that illustrate why so many women flock to an environment where they can work out with no men present.
She had gone to the gym in a sports bra and spandex shorts, because that’s what she felt confident and best able to exercise in, but when she went to wash her hands after she’d finished, another woman rushed in behind her.
The woman – Sophie – told Stephanie she’d been standing behind a man in an orange sweater who was sneaking photos of her while she worked out.
“I went to the bathroom and this girl came inside and she told me that a guy, who’s wearing an orange sweater, she was behind him and he was taking pictures of me. I’m going to cry.”
Stephanie, feeling self-conscious, slipped on a bulky sweatshirt and had a good cry about the violation she felt at the entire incident.
At first, she wasn’t going to say anything because she’s not a confrontational person and her instinct was to cover up, get out of there, and go home to cry about the entire incident in private.
“I honestly was just going to go home and pretend like nothing happened because I was really scared. But I thought about something more than myself…if I didn’t say or do something, this guy could continue to do it to other females in my gym and I was not OK with that, no matter how shy or scared I was I wanted to ensure that no other female had to go through with what I went through there.”
Then she realized, though, that if she did that she would be leaving other women vulnerable to his creepy antics – and so she decided to speak with the gym staff.
“If this happens again, let us know. Front desk or whoever is here will help you out. You’re like my daughter!”
They were quick to take action, wanting to make sure that the man deleted any inappropriate photos he had on his phone before leaving the gym.
Even though Stephanie feels like she handled it the best way she could, she still hates that she had to experience that shock and disgust at all.
“I never thought it would happen to me.
I feel comfortable working out in a sports bra and spandex because it’s what makes me feel good in the gym. I feel confident in my body and I wear that outfit for myself.
To find out a guy had pictures or videos of me doing a workout without my consent just made me uncomfortable – knowing that he was looking at me a certain way in an outfit that was supposed to make me feel good.”
Check out her video:
Has anything like this happened to you? It’s happened to way too many of us, I do believe.
What are your ideas on how to address this? Do you advocate for female-only gyms?
Our comments are open for discussions!