Work-out in a Gym? The French say “Sacre Bleu!”

November 23rd, 2010 | Sources: MSNBC

Like their counterparts in other first-world countries, French people know about the health benefits of exercise. And French culture has emphasized, even worshipped, good looks (which these days translates to “fit and trim”).

So it’s surprising that the French avoid fitness centers as vigorously as factory-produced croissants.
 
gettinbigwithrivaroxaban 300x187 Work out in a Gym? The French say Sacre Bleu!But they do. According to the International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association, just 5.4% of French people were members of a fitness club in 2008. That’s substantially less than their counterparts in Italy (9.5%), the UK (11.9%) and Spain (16.6%).

“It appears that more people are sitting in cafes smoking cigarettes and drinking coffee than working out … the French don’t see fitness as a lifestyle,” American-born fitness consultant Fred Hoffman told MSNBC. Hoffman has lived in Paris for 2 decades.
 
The only part of the fitness market that is growing in France is the one for cut-rate, no-frills facilities. “It’s a lot simpler just to open a shoebox and throw in some machines,” explained Michel Parada, who directs operations for Fitness First in France.

However, Hoffman doubts these facilities will be able to sustain themselves, as the French folks who do join fitness centres aren’t savvy about work-out regimes and typically require a personal trainer to carry out a safe, effective work-out.

The problem, it seems, is that working-out has an image problem in France. Celebrities in particular seem to shun sweaty workouts, at least in public. And it’s unlikely that this will change even if the government began promoting fitness.

That became clear in 2007, when President Nicolas Sarkozy was observed jogging in the streets of Paris after his election. “I would rather see the president in his suit than in his sweat,” philosopher Alain Finkielkraut said at the time.


 

Comments

  1. insanity | 1/02/11

    You will find quite a few positive aspects of becoming physically fit and active. First of all, a fit and active way of life can result in positive thinking and better concentration. Fitness keeps you feeling and looking healthy. It reduces anxiety, anxiety, and depression as well. Incorporating fitness exercises into your lifestyle can keep your blood pressure at usual levels.

  2. Revabs Brett Hoebel | 4/02/11

    It is necessary to be physically fit as it reduces the chances of obtaining health troubles. The recent researches have proved the reality that men and women who engage themselves in typical physical activities can stay away from quite a few diseases like cardiovascular challenges, high blood pressure, diabetes, as well as cancer.

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