Women, Exercise and Sport – What’s going wrong?

Recently, I’ve been thinking a lot about women’s attitude to exercise and sport. And more importantly, why it can be so flawed. This post is a little more general so take it with a pinch of salt. Whilst I’m not saying all women have these attitudes, I would argue they’re probably more prevalent in women.

Whenever I open a women’s magazine, most of the time the fitness section is dedicated entirely to how a woman can get a great butt. More often than not. There’s so much emphasis on an end goal without even considering the fact that women are allowed to enjoy exercise.

Exercise for women tends to be treated as a chore.


It’s presented as two options for women: go to a gym and do cardio, join a fitness class or go running. And whilst these options are completely fine don’t get me wrong, that’s the expectation.

We literally hear all the time about ‘how to stick to fitness routines’ as if it’s some kind of chore. As if there’s no way a female could enjoy working a sweat. There’s an assumption there that we can’t switch up our routines at all.

My whole point is exercise doesn’t have to be a chore. It doesn’t have to be unenjoyable and I’m getting increasingly sick of people treating that like it’s normal.

If you want to try running, just go for a run. And then the next day you may think ‘actually I want to go swimming’ or ‘I want to do weights’ – and all these things are absolutely fine. You can pretty much do whatever you want.

If you have a physical disability, there are a number of ways you can get moving. I would like to think that the system is getting better for those with physical disabilities to do what they want. You can find out a lot more about that here. This is in itself a whole other post, and as someone that’s not physically impaired it would feel wrong to write about it. But I will refer you to some excellent resources!

I’ve recently started Roller Derby in Manchester and whilst I’ve only been for one session so far, it was so empowering.

What sport would you love to join?

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4 comments so far.
  • I feel so strongly about women and sport. I’ve loved sport since I was about 9/10 and it doesn’t make me any less feminine. I also want to go into sports journalism so I need to know my stuff and many people are intimidated by this. I also love to exercise. I mean, sure there are times when I don’t want to and rest days are important, but for the majority, working out makes me feel good about myself. I prefer to work out at home and dancing is a major passion of mine. I’m excited to start cheerleading next week too!

    • Eleanor

      Definitely! It makes me sad how problematic people’s attitudes to exercise can be 🙁 I’ve not worked out much recently, due to a sprained ankle, and I can’t wait to get back into it tomorrow when I start again.


  • Helen

    I love this post! This is SO true! I started going to the gym about 3 months ago and the man that did my induction just couldn’t believe that I was starting because I just wanted to feel good about myself and enjoy doing exercise.


    • Eleanor

      It’s unreal right?! I don’t think people really get at all why I exercise tbh! x


I’m Eleanor, a UK Manchester based Lifestyle & Beauty Blogger. I write about beauty products, feminism, mental health and my adventures in the big city of MCR.

Contact: hello@elleanorwears.com