As women and especially as teenagers, we’re continuously told to hide our bodies; our clothes are deemed too low cut and too tight, and we are asked to present ourselves in ways that satisfy and placate others.
Allison Roth is a 17-year-old who wore a tank top to the gym and got scolded. As a member of Planet Fitness in Waterford Township, the young woman assumed that the facility and franchise would hold true to its mission to foster a “judgement-free zone;” she had never been informed of a dress code of any kind.
When an employee confronted Roth, explaining that her attire “was making others uncomfortable,” she was presented with the choice of further covering herself or leaving. The young woman has since voted with her dollar, and she has garnered overwhelming support from social media outlets. What’s more, the owner of Clinton Township’s Powerhouse Gym, Michael Bloomquist, has offered her a lifetime of free membership to his (actually judgement-free) gym. Explains Bloomquist, “I truly believe in a judgment-free zone when you work out. I don’t care if you’re 80 years old or 17 years old.”
Sadly, Roth’s story is not unique, and it isn’t insignificant. This is just one instance of many in which women are berated for their clothes and their bodies and expected to look a certain way so as to not distract others. Too often in the gym environment, men can roam shirtless, while women are asked to make themselves scarce. Our bodies aren’t obligated to please anyone but ourselves!
Thanks to Opposing Views
The opinions expressed on the BUST blog are those of the authors themselves and do not necessarily reflect the position of BUST Magazine or its staff.