Saturday, October 30, 2010

Gender roles hurt men too.


I was wandering the interwebz before my exercise class this morning and ran across a discussion about this comic on Pharyngula. I have to admit that I naively thought that women would have more respect and status by now given that we are at least half the population but between the rise of uber-conservatism and the denial of existence of experts it's no surprise that women as still treated like second class citizens. Mostly it boils down to  men being unable imagine that women could have an area of expertise other than one related to sex - and really the only thing that matters to women is their sexual attractiveness. Oh and thinking they have the right to lack self control but anyway...

Eventually someone brings up the "men have it hard too" argument. Oh and gender roles hurt men.

Which brings me to the reason I'm blogging today. The instructors at NRG4Life are all certified and very well versed in musculature and how to exercise without injury. Kind of like EXPERTS! Today was Halloween fun so a woman brought her husband along to the class. Now you know that classes are through to be lame because - well they are female activity involving rhythm and music. For the class today there was some aerobics then some free weights. The deal with free weight is you do specific movements in a controlled manner to work specific muscle groups. You can challenge yourself by either upping the reps or the weight. Well the guy at the back of the class was using 3 pound weights (I could tell because they were lime green) when we were told to only grab heavy weights; then when we were doing shoulders he was swinging his arms around like he was scything hay. Let me tell you it's very distracting to have someone doing something so *utterly* useless in your field of view. He continued this trend through the entire upper body workout. The instructor didn't challenge him even though he was inviting self injury and I don't blame her.

That man was unable to comprehend that a woman could know something he didn't so he didn't follow the routine. I wouldn't be surprised if he told his wife that it was such an easy work out that other men couldn't be getting much out of it. This guy flirted with an injury because of his inability to follow directions from a woman. You can bet he would have blamed the instructor if he pulled something even though he wasn't doing what she said. Also he's old (like me only a little older I think) so it's going to take a long time to heal a soft tissue injury. There are a few men who come to the various classes. They use heavier weights to exhaust their muscles and they follow the routine so they the benefits of a guided workout. Kudos for being willing to show exhaustion when working out with the opposite gender.