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Women find power through weightlifting | Click For Special Section

When Sellersburg, Indiana, sophomore Emory Lewis goes to the Preston Center, she does not head straight to the elliptical or the treadmill like most of the different feminine shoppers. Instead, she walks straight to the weights, claiming a spot for herself in an space dominated by males.

Lewis stated she is usually one of many solely women in that space, however she stated the intimidation she typically feels hasn’t stopped her from choosing up the weights.

“[Men] think they’re strong, but sometimes they really aren’t,” Lewis stated. “Sometimes you can definitely compete with them.”

Women like Lewis are considerably uncommon, in line with Fitness Magazine. In a research of 12.7 million women who belonged to a health membership, solely about half used weight machines whereas lower than a 3rd used free weights.

Lewis stated she has observed the gender divide whereas at Preston. She stated she has typically gone to carry to find she is the one feminine within the space. She stated being surrounded by males typically feels uncomfortable however the feeling by no means lasts lengthy.

“You think they’re watching you, but they’re never really watching you,” Lewis stated. “At least, that’s how I feel.”

Georgetown sophomore Hayley Robb works at Preston as a private coach. She stated she has additionally observed extra males within the resistance and weight coaching space of the health middle. She stated she thinks some women could also be intimidated by the predominantly male space.

“Women have just struggled, I think, to feel empowered or welcomed in that environment because it is intimidating,” Robb stated.

Robb stated stereotypes that males are the stronger gender might flip some women away from power coaching. She stated different women might fear resistance coaching will make their muscle tissues cumbersome.

“You have to really try to train specifically to get that body type,” Robb stated.

Lewis stated she began lifting in highschool when she ran monitor and has been lifting for six years, however she has by no means develop into cumbersome. She stated she by no means frightened about bulking up as a result of she was operating when she was lifting and none of her feminine buddies who carry have grow to be cumbersome both.

“I don’t think [lifting] does that to girls at all,” Lewis stated.

Robb stated coaching with weights goes past simply strengthening the physique. She stated she has gained a way of independence and stronger values as a result of she has pushed herself to enhance her health even when it might appear uncomfortable at first.

“A big part of fitness is getting outside of your comfort zone and pushing yourself,” Robb stated.

Robb stated anybody, male or feminine, who’s interested by resistance coaching can contact the Preston Center and arrange an appointment with a private coach. She stated the health middle additionally has lab providers to show individuals the right way to use the gear.

Lewis stated she enjoys introducing new individuals to the artwork of lifting. She stated she would encourage different women to carry as a result of it comes with many advantages, comparable to serving to her focus in class. She stated it has additionally improved her self-confidence.

“I love being strong,” Lewis stated. “It makes me feel better about myself.”

Reporter Emma Collins may be reached at 270-745-6011 and

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