Tank tops at the gym?

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Emily Sargent

esargent@radford.edu

Tank tops are a popular item of clothing that can be worn almost anywhere. They can be worn to a concert, a party, or to a casual restaurant. However, one place tank tops are not permitted in the gym on campus. Tank tops are against the gym’s dress code because they can be unhygienic and make the gym less sanitary.

The dress code for the Student Recreation and Wellness Center can be found on the Radford University website. It states that t-shirts should be full-length, short sleeved, and non-modified. It also says that sweat from tank tops can damage the equipment and require more effort to clean.

Students at Radford, however, have different opinions on this rule. Freshman Sierra Thompson has a neutral stance on the issue. “I don’t know; I don’t feel indifferent to it. I don’t think it matters really,” she said. Thompson also believes tank tops will not change the environment of the gym. “I don’t believe that it would change anything. I mean, people would just be able to wear them,” she said.

Another freshman, Pearl Moore, does believe students should be able to wear tank tops to the gym. “Yes, because they can wear short shorts. You’re being exposed through shorts too,” she said. Moore also added, “If the problem’s with sweat and you’re being exposed through shorts because your legs sweat too. So I feel like it’s kind of just pointless to wear tank tops.”

I believe students should be allowed to wear tank tops to the gym. They would increase the flow of air through the body and allow students to move their arms more easily. When clothing covers the whole body, air cannot flow as freely, increasing body temperature as a result. When the arms and chest are exposed through tank tops, airflow increases and the body can cool down faster.

Sometimes short sleeves can limit arm movement. If a student is doing pull-ups on a machine or lifting weights, that student may realize that he or she cannot move his or her arm high enough due to the limitation caused by the shirt’s sleeves.

I also agree that because students are allowed to wear short shorts, they should be allowed to wear tank tops. It would make sense for shorts and shirts to have the same standards. Some students may feel more comfortable working out in tank tops. They should be able to exercise in clothes that make them feel comfortable.

I understand that sweat can be unsanitary and affect gym equipment, but if students were allowed to wear tank tops, they could be more careful with the equipment. They could put more effort into disinfecting it when they are finished using it.

Students should be allowed to wear tank tops to the gym because they are allowed to wear short shorts, which also expose skin. They also allow the body to cool down faster and students can move their arms more freely. Tank tops would also allow more students to exercise in clothing that makes them feel comfortable.