Weight Room dress code overly restrictive

Weight Room dress code overly restrictive

Jessica Sconyers, Staff Writer

Piedmont University’s new dress code for the weight room feels more like Piedmont High School.

In August students moved back in and as students were ready to get back into their workout routine many were stopped at the front desk. Why? Because of a new weight room dress code. The restrictive rules took many by surprise.

“I walked into the gym with a tank top that was showing a small sliver of my stomach. I got stopped and the front desk worker told me, ‘I’m sorry you can’t wear that because it’s showing too much skin it’s against our dress code,” said freshman musical theater major Athena Lux. “He asked me to leave or to change.”

What angered Lux even more was that she noticed male students working out in the weight room with no shirts on.

“I think it was really sexist towards girls, because I saw tons of guys that day wearing cut-off shirts.” she said “Even though the dress code was made for both men and women, I still felt singled out.”

After the first couple weeks of school, the weight room dress code was clarified. Stating that “altered shirts must cover the chest and nipples.” Shorts must “cover the buttocks and groin area at all times and appropriate gym footwear such as athletic shoes must be worn at all times.

Lux’s outfit would seemingly be of now, but a different dress code rule has other students concerned. All shoes “must be closed toe and bare feet or socks only is strictly prohibited. Jeans, cargo pants, dress suits, or cut-off shorts are not allowed, as they can damage the equipment. Specific prohibited shoes: sandals, Crocs, high heels, work boots, flip flops, etc.”

“I personally don’t agree with the ‘no shoes’ rule,” said sophomore business marketing major Jason Aussin who goes to the gym everyday and is a starting striker on the Piedmont men’s soccer team. “When you are working out, your legs specifically, most gym shoes have too much cushion because they are meant to be comfortable.”

Wearing shoes poses a greater risk, whereas being barefoot is actually beneficial.

“When pushing up for a deadlift or squat, and wearing shoes, the outsides of your feet in shoes can push further outside of the soles than down, because there’s that one-to-two inch give,” Aussin said.

It’s much safer to just have your feet shoeless (with socks on) while deadlifting or squatting. imagine rolling or spraining your angle off a curb with 100-300 pounds on your back.

The dress code has frustrated many athletes and non-athletes, alike. Students who use the weight room know that the room can get very hot. Whether there’s five people in there or a whole team working out together, men will often take off their shirts and women will have a sports bra or smaller shirt on.

Having this “dress code” isn’t realistic for many reasons. We are in college. This isn’t high school. It’s 2022 and girls are going to wear what they want, not for the attention of men but because it’s what makes us comfortable. When we work out, we should be able to wear what we feel comfortable or confident in (as long as it’s not breaking any laws).

Obviously sanitary issues come into play with the weight room dress code and we appreciate the steps Piedmont is making towards a cleaner campus. But we should not be treated as boys and girls, but rather the men and women we are.