Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Why are people “Afraid” of the gym?

I believe that a lack of exercise can come from a lack of knowledge.
I also believe that a fear of exercise comes from a lack of knowledge.
All in all it comes from being physically uneducated.

I honestly believe that the gym is a judgment free zone. If you are afraid of going to the gym because you might look stupid or other people at the gym will think you are “fat” well I think you are wrong. At least you are at the gym putting in the effort to improve your health. Maybe you are overweight, maybe you don’t know what you are doing, but hey your still doing better than the millions of people who let those fears hold them back from even going to the gym. At least you are one step ahead because you are giving it a try. I for one give you credit just for fighting those fears and stepping up to the plate and going to the gym.

So you don’t know what you are doing? Well that’s why the gym hires staff to help you out. Everyone has to start somewhere; us regular gym goers did not just wake up one day and know everything there is to know about exercise. We still learn new things everyday just like you are going to.

When I went into the schools over my winter break last year for my 256 observations, my host teacher at the high school was beginning to teach a weight training unit with her ninth grade girls class, which I thought was awesome, because I wish I could have taken a unit on weight training when I was in high school, I would have loved it. Back to my point of this storey, I was amazed at some of the questions that the students were asking my host teacher. One question that stands out the most in my mind, was when one of the students asked that is she lifted weights, was she going to end up looking like a body builder? She said she had never lifted weights before because this was a fear of hers.

Another reason why this questions stands out so much to me is because when I am home over beaks I work as a fitness trainer at my local YMCA and I have had plenty of younger, high school and middle school aged girls ask me this very same question. There for it must be a common fear, that many younger girls are afraid of weight training because they believe that it is going to turn them into massive body builders. I believe that this fear come from the lack of knowledge, like I stated earlier. If these girls had been more physically educated my their physical education teachers they could avoid the fear of lifting weights, and have began participating in this activity much sooner.

Another common fear is the fear of looking stupid and out of place at the gym. I think that the people that have this fear have it because of their lack of knowledge when it comes to exercise, thus being physically uneducated. If you know what you are doing then there should not be a fear of looking out of place wherever you may be. Some people are scared to go running in public; because they think that they might look funny doing so. This could be because they were never taught the correct form for running when they were in their physical education class. This can all be easily avoided. As physical education teachers it is our job to physical educate today’s youth, so that they do not grow up to have these, what I would call irrational fears about exercise and physical activity.

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