University removes weight scales from the gym because they’re ‘triggering’ students

Earlier this month a Canadian university removed a piece of equipment from its high-tech, 11,000 square foot fitness center that’s normally considered de rigueur in such facilities — a scale, a device to check one’s weight.

Carleton University removed the scales, claiming that weight on its own “does not provide a good indication of health and, here at Athletics, we have chosen to move away from focusing solely on body weight,” according to the Ottawa Citizen.

Bruce Marshall, the manager of the university’s wellness programs, told the publication in an email that the decision was “in keeping with current fitness and social trends.”

One can understand why a modern gymnasium would want to keep abreast of fitness trends — but social trends? What do they have to do with keeping fit?

“Try not to measure your success by just that one number,” Marshall continued. “Our health and fitness is multi-faceted. The best indicator is how well you feel in your body.”

Would that apply to say, Jabba the Hut? How about Michael Moore, who never saw a whole pie he couldn’t devour within five minutes flat?

But back to those “social trends” — what could that mean”

First year student Samar El Faki provided some insight. She told The Charlatan, the university newspaper, that removing the scales was a good idea because it would accommodate students with eating disorders.

“Scales are very triggering,” she said. “I think people are being insensitive because they simply don’t understand. They think eating disorders are a choice when they are actually a serious illness.”

And the way to combat an eating disorder is to remove scales to pretend it doesn’t exist?

Not everyone was on board with this line of thinking, however. Joseph Kegg replied to a Facebook post of the decision, “Blame the spoon because you ate a half-gallon of Ben & Jerry’s”

The incident also hit Twitter.

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And of course someone had to bring up the “zombie apocalypse.”

Marshall did admit, however, that checking weight can be beneficial — if you’re consistent about it.

“If you must weigh yourself, pick a consistent day and time, but we suggest to avoid doing it daily as natural fluctuations will occur,” Marshall said. “Try not to measure your success by just that one number. Our health and fitness is multi-faceted and one measurement does not tell the whole story. The best indicator is how well you feel in your body.”


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