There was a time when the fitness world belonged to men. From bodybuilders and gym rats to athletes and runners, testosterone ruled the industry and women took a backseat.
That’s not the case anymore.
Think about the last time you exercised at your local gym or went for a run around the neighborhood. Who did you see more of working out, men or women? More and more, the answer is the supposed “gentler sex.”
Due to an increase in female trainers and community fitness classes, female entrepreneurs are entering the business of fitness. It has been nearly 50 years of Title IX. Women have gone to dominating nearly every aspect of the fitness world.
So how did we get here?
The Title IX Impact
Passed in 1972, Title IX prohibited discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally funded education program or activity. Fast forward 47 years later and we have generations of girls who have grown up playing sports. Either through community leagues or on their school teams. They have had athletics playing a major role in their upbringing.
It’s no surprise, then, that in the last 25 years we’ve seen more and more women compete in marathons, half-marathons, 5K/10K races, Spartan Races, and other fitness events. They may not be playing sports professionally, but that fitness background has led them to pursue other outlets and become the dominant group at most athletic community events.
No Train, No Gain
Just as more women are going to the gym, they have more options when it comes to personal trainers – and the differences between male and female fitness coaches have all but disappeared.
“Generally, female personal trainers are stereotyped to have a gentler approach and aren’t as strict as a male personal trainer would be,” said Heritage Victor Valley Medical Certified Trainer Monica Padilla. “I think that’s an old stereotype. I wouldn’t train a female any differently than a male.”
With more diversity in personal trainers, there’s been an uptick in use of them by women who want to push and challenged but feel more comfortable working with a fellow female. The results have been more women using heavy weights and performing workouts that had usually been reserved for men in the past.
“I love being a female trainer in the fitness industry because I want people to see fitness the way it should be and not divided by sex,” said Monica Padilla. “Slowly, a lot of people are now seeing fitness in a more equal way. With time and more female trainers in the industry, we can definitely overcome it.”
Women Drive Group Fitness
It’s almost impossible to find a gym that doesn’t offer some type of group class. From yoga to spin to Zumba, fitness centers have schedules jam-packed with classes that are filled with women. Why is that?
The simple answer is that women predominantly are drawn to the social aspect of fitness. Men are usually more content with working out on their own. Women enjoy the idea of working out with a group of like-minded workout warriors with whom they can draw motivation. They also draw inspiration and a sense of community from.
“Running, cycling, boutique fitness, yoga, Pilates, they all emphasize mindfulness and peacefulness. The activities provide stress relief, combat anxiety and are ways to be with other people,” said Monica. “Many women used to get those things from church or a place of worship, now we’re at a Sunday morning workout with me.
“I love training women while empowering them to be stronger, healthier versions of themselves and show their female family, friends, co-workers, and others that they can do it too!”
Work Out to Wear Out
Yoga pants have become all the rage over the past decade, and have helped fuel the female fitness boom in the process. There’s no hiding in a pair of skin-tight leggings, so women who want to keep up with the latest fashion trends have had to invest the sweat equity in order to wear their stylish yoga pants with confidence in public.
Add in the expansion of workout attire that’s now acceptable both at the gym and around town, and it’s never been more hip to show off your fit physique during a trip to the grocery store or a stroll through the park.
Running the Business of Fitness
Since Jane Fonda’s Original Workout tapes. Now with current fitness companies run by women like SoulCycle. Female domination extends to the business side of the fitness world.
With more women becoming passionate about fitness and athletics. It was only a matter of time before they began launching companies built around the idea of community fitness. Female entrepreneurs understand the importance of belonging and the social aspect of a fitness movement. This movement that’s been occurring in the last 20 years. They’ve capitalized on this advantage to create companies and programs that cater to their clients’ wants and needs.
“It is awesome to see that over the years, women have been able to break through a lot of barriers in the fitness industry,” Heritage Victor Valley Medical Certified Trainer Monica Padilla “It’s been a long time coming.”
Make Heritage LifeFit your place of fitness. Register for one of our many fitness classes now.
Heritage Victor Valley Medical Group (HVVMG) offers its members award-winning coordinated care with a speedy referral system. Heritage has 45 primary care physicians and a panel of two hundred medical specialists across Southern California’s High Desert, as well as the mountain communities. They also have a locally based members service team and is dedicated to a spirit of excellence. HVVMG is part of the Heritage Provider Network.