Gyms don't exactly have the best reputation as welcoming, inclusive spaces. Whether you're a person with a larger body, or someone in the LGBTQ+ community, it can often feel like if you don't fit the Instagram fitness influencer or bodybuilder mold, there's no room for you. On top of that, the fitness industry has historically operated under the assumption that everyone wants their bodies to look a certain way — usually, a way that's very in line with gender binaries.
Luckily, as our understanding of health, fitness, and gender identity and expression evolves, more gyms and fitness spaces are creating programs and spaces for these underrepresented populations. But being an inclusive, LGBTQ+ friendly gym requires more than just hanging a rainbow flag on the wall (although, that's certainly not a bad idea).
Ahead, we've found a handful of the gyms, workout classes, and fitness spaces in New York City that celebrate all kinds of gender expressions and sexual identities.