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Only Girls Allowed!

Only Girls Allowed!

For many people joining a gym can be a daunting prospect and this may be particularly true for women, for cultural, religious or purely personal reasons. Statistically, more men than women join gyms, and as government initiatives such as "This Girl Can" and an increase in media coverage of women in sport, focus on encouraging more women to take up sport and exercise, we feel it's very important to offer female only facilities in our clubs to help overcome any barriers to women's participation in physical activity.

If you’re new to the gym and female, you may feel a bit self-conscious about your body and embarrassed about your shape or size, your age or your perceived lack of fitness. Or it could be that you would just prefer to work out with other women, who you think will be less judgemental and allow you to relax and make friends. And the sort of clothing that is appropriate to wear when exercising – something cool, stretchy and probably figure hugging – may also put you off or prohibit you from working out in the company of men. Of course, men exercising in mixed gyms are usually too focused on their own workouts to pay much attention to other people, of either sex, but we would not want women to be deterred from taking exercise by concerns about being observed or judged.


That is why where space allows, Welcome Gym provides Ladies Only facilities in its gyms, dedicated spaces where women can feel comfortable, be themselves, lose their inhibitions and not feel intimidated. They are then able to concentrate on getting fit and staying healthy in a calm and friendly environment with like-minded people and with an enhanced level of privacy. These spaces are accessed via the ladies' changing rooms and staffed by women.

Our Ladies Only areas are well equipped with a selection of equipment, which usually includes cross trainers, treadmills, rowers and stationary bikes and resistance kit like leg presses and lat pulldown machines to build strength. There will also be some weight training equipment, Swiss balls and a stretch area. Although the gyms dedicated solely for women's use are airy and as spacious as possible, fitness classes designed exclusively for women may be held elsewhere in the club, where there is more room to accommodate a number of participants. If there aren’t any Ladies Only classes in your club, why not ask the Club Manager if they can be added to the timetable? If there is sufficient demand for a particular class and an instructor is available, your request will be considered sympathetically.


Of course, the best people to assess the benefits of our Ladies Only gyms are our members, like Nicola, who's a member at Welcome Gym Cheltenham. She believes that the Ladies Only gym is a very valuable resource, which many women would appreciate using. She says, “ I really enjoy having the option of a Ladies Only area. Its great for getting a workout done when you aren't feeling your most confident or just need a less intimidating space”. Priya, a member from Welcome Gym Sutton says, "I really like doing the ladies only classes! They are hard but very motivating" and her fellow member Anne agrees. She says “I enjoy the ladies only classes but like to have my own workout in the ladies only gym as well. It’s nice and peaceful most of the time.” So, if your club boasts a Ladies Only facility, do make use of it and encourage your friends to come along and join you and make getting fit even more fun.

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