In her book, Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men, Caroline Criado-Perez writes that there’s a harmful data gap in a world designed by men, for men. Everything from car safety to office air conditioner policies to voice recognition to heart attack warning signs are created with men in mind. While the oversights in these policies and products and problems may be entirely unintentional, they underscore the importance of female representation in every aspect of life to ensure that women’s needs are met.
The same is true within the fitness industry. If we want women to feel welcome, safe, and empowered, we also need women taking a lead in exercise and recovery programming to ensure that our unique physiological differences are considered.
Historically, feats of strength and endurance have been areas that were populated by men. Sure, we now know that there were female gladiators in ancient Rome, but they were rare and they’re still rarely mentioned. In the interim between gladiatorial combat and the rise of women’s sports, there wasn’t much in the way of fitness programming that emphasized strength, speed, and agility. Instead, women’s fitness was defined by a quest to look slender and appealing to men.
But times have changed.
Women are breaking world records. A woman is heralded as the greatest athlete of all time. Women are trading traditional beauty norms for strong, healthy bodies. Women are redefining what fitness for women should look like. Women are leaning into strength training as a lifelong endeavor, including through pregnancy and menopause.
It’s all possible because women have risen to the challenge of having honest, raw conversations about our bodies and training and wellness.
Look at women like TRX Trainer Shauna Harrison, who has the academic chops—hello, PhD—and fitness expertise to share insights about how trainers can more effectively serve their clients. Consider trainers like Ami McMullen, who bet on herself and her future with less than $100 in the bank, and now owns a successful TRX-focused gym in Louisville, Ky. Think about household names like Lizzo, who champion body positivity and demonstrate that hardcore strength and endurance work isn’t the exclusive territory of models sporting six-pack abs.
When we elevate women as thought leaders in the fitness industry, we highlight how exercise can be part of wholistic approach to wellness—whether it’s mitigating endometriosis pain, improving your sex life, recovering from diastasis recti, or just feeling better in day to day activities. When women help shape the fitness industry, wellness becomes more inclusive.
TRX is committed to providing fitness tools to support any body, anywhere, and we’re thrilled that women around the world use the TRX Suspension Trainer to work toward their goals. It’s an honor to have strong women in every facet of the TRX community—trainers, course educators, and customers—because when women thrive, the world thrives.