Joining a gym is a big decision with multiple benefits for your health — both mental and physical. But for some, it can be a bit intimidating. So much so that they even came up with a word for it: gymtimidation. Yes, it’s a made-up word. However, we assure you: the feeling is real.
Gymtimidation describes the feeling of intimidation to go to the gym due to fear of judgement or anxiety. This can result from the pressure of not knowing how to use weights and machines or being unconfident about our bodies and how they compare with other gym-goers. If these words resonate with you, let us assure you: you’re not alone.
Gymtimidation is real
Gymtimidation is a real issue. In fact, an American survey found that almost 65% of women admitted to avoiding the gym due to anxiety or fear of judgement. 36.1% of men said the same. In the UK, 1 in 4 women admitted they were “too intimidated to go to the gym”.
Different factors contribute to this feeling: seeing the gym as an unfamiliar place, and feeling unattractive, awkward, unfit and inexperienced are some of the reasons preventing people from joining a gym. So, how can we tackle this?
How to tackle it gymtimidation
1 – Keep it simple
At EVO, we like to keep fitness simple. We understand the weight rack and the numerous machines can be intimidating. Keep in mind that you don’t need to master them once you step foot in a gym. We suggest you start with simple workouts and progressively include more complex exercises. You can count on our personal trainers to help you prepare your fitness routine.
2 – Find a gym partner
A gym buddy will be on your side when you’re doubtful and make your time in the gym more enjoyable. But there’s more: accountability. Staying accountable is one of the best ways to ensure you actually turn up to the gym in the first place (which can be the hardest part). No one wants to let a friend down. So, bring a friend and make a pact to show up for each other.
3 – Reframe your perspective
If you feel intimidated by the idea of being judged by others, it’s important to help you change your perspective. The reality is that many people, regardless of age, weight, or gender, feel self-conscious in the gym. Look at it the other way around: your presence in the gym, if you can help contribute to a welcoming environment, can help alleviate the anxiety many other people might be experiencing.
4 – Choose a friendly gym
Imagine a gym. It’s giant, packed and loaded with machines? Then, it’s not EVO. We’re a boutique fitness club: our spaces were carefully conceived to be friendly to everyone: from newbies to gym rats. Plus, our clubs have the best-in-class equipment for you to get acquainted with — gradually, of course. Take your time!