Search This Blog

Thursday, November 16, 2006

#263: Going to the "gym"

I don't like how people call places like 24 Hour Fitness "The Gym." Unless your place has a basketball court or a boxing ring included, you can't use that term. Gym is short of Gymnasium which, as you can see if you click the link, does not describe the place where you go on a treadmill while you watch the Food Network. Does you place have Yoga classes? Not a gym. Smoothie bar? Not a gym. In other words, your place of exercise has to have either some kind of court for playing a game or running AND not have any froufrou stuff like a day spa or pilates to get the moniker "gym." Please stop misusing this name to imply you doing some gritty Rocky-type workouts when you aren't. Severity: 2

Note, I do realize that this brings up a problem of what to call you new non-gym where you workout. I don't have a good answer.


Vicki Stockton said...

Guilty as charged!

I remember in the 80s, when racquetball was in its heyday, the elite fitness clubs were called "Racquet Clubs." It's also a misnomer for a full-service workout facility, but perhaps trying to reinvent the term may lessen your annoyance???

Marc Schoenfeld said...


I recall that trend too. There was a place somewhere by me called Kangaroo Courts I think.

I think my solution is to simply modify the sentence to use the intransitive verb phrase "work out" as in "I'm going to work out." Another solution would be to use the term "club," though it would be a bit confusing if you or people in your area belonged to a country club.