Equinox, the upscale gym with locations in New York, Dallas, Chicago and other locations throughout the east and west coast, is causing quite an uproar over its new print ads. The campaign entitled, “It’s Not Fitness, It’s Life” certainly promotes anything but fitness. Instead, it equates “life” to unrealistic thin runway models and the degradation and sexualization of women.
For a business focused on health and fitness, it’s hard to believe that they could intentionally release ads that depict only Victoria Secrets-looking models who are splayed out in some rather compromising, sexual positions. Not to mention the fact that they look like they spend more time on crash diets than in the gym. The guys, on the other hand, are photographed with their muscles and six-pack abs on display. Making the stereotypical point, once again, that women should be frail, thin and dainty, while men should be strong and muscular.
Like, is this what a woman in the weight room is supposed to look like?
Or a woman in spin class?
Or a woman in yoga?
And based on some of the comments on their Facebook page, others agree:
Jennifer Marie Schutten wrote:
Why did all of the models have a runway physique? Equinox is promoting health and fitness, so I would like to see some healthy and fit women on their ad campaigns who look like they could actually survive a typical Equinox class.. Can we maybe see a little bit if muscle on the ladies next time around? The Nike ads are great examples of strong, fit women!
Alisa Freundlich commented:
I saw the new campaign photos being installed this morning over the West LA entrance and was quite offended. They are an insult to your members who actually show up and work out. What is the point of two anorexic women arm wrestling over a cake? Is that supposed to be inspiring? Please rethink your messaging and give us something which motivates without degrading women (and men).
And Joey Swidler added:
these ads are stupid. strong, healthy women do not look like this.
We agree with all of these points. And while some people are pointing the finger at photographer, Terry Richardson, it’s really not his fault. After all, he’s just taking the money and doing what he’s told. Equinox is responsible for the ads and the image they put out there.
To which we say: Come on guys, you know better than this.
Take our poll and tell us what you think.