If It’s on the Jersey Shore, It’s Not Coming Through the Door

March 11, 2022

Written by Abbey Marrin, Event Manager

Dress code seems to be a controversial topic at Liberty University. In today’s culture, times are changing, and modesty can be seen as subjective. The Liberty Way is updated every now and then, so it can be hard for students to understand why the dress code can’t be more lenient. As a girl who both is asked to enforce dress code but also works out at LaHaye Rec & Fit, I have my own thoughts on the topic of dress code that I wanted to share below.

The Changing Fitness Industry

The fitness industry is changing drastically. I would say that the gym is one of the biggest places for trendsetting. So many brands are changing the colors and cuts of their collections. The gym used to be for jocks and meatheads — a place full of guys in cutoffs and shorts. Women would join group exercise classes rocking leggings and bodysuits that covered their whole body. Now, the trends seem to be cutting off more and more clothing. For example, Gymshark, Halara, and others sell athletic wear that is cropped and form fitting. I believe this change in the athletics industry comes from the body positivity movement and the empowerment of women. But, in the midst of the trendy athletic wear movement, regardless of where you choose to workout, the facility will have a posted list of dress code policies.

Women are finally finding their place in the gym and feeling comfortable working out around men. When I was in high school, my softball team would work out together in the mornings before class because we hated sharing the gym with the baseball and lacrosse team in the afternoons. After recently visiting my coaches, I learned that the team actually enjoys working out with the baseball team now because they encourage and compete with each other. If the guys can work out whenever and however they want to, in whatever they want, why can’t the girls?

I Know What I Signed Up For

Transferring to Liberty, there was a lot I had to get used to. Attending Convocation when I had homework and studying to do felt stressful at times, but I was required to go. So, I did. Turning 21 years old and following a curfew wasn’t my favorite thing, but I did it because I agreed to it when I committed to Liberty and moved onto campus. Following rules and abiding to policies isn’t always fun and glamorous, but that’s life. One of my favorite verses is 1 Corinthians 10:23-24, and it says, “’All things are lawful,’ but not all things are helpful. ‘All things are lawful,’ but not all things build up. Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor.” Through interning at a beach camp and working for Campus Recreation, I’ve learned that it is important to show reverence to the Lord in everything I do. I am not edifying my brothers and sisters in Christ when I am breaking dress code. Plus, using equipment or laying on mats with most of my skin touching just feels dirty and gross. I’d rather be comfortable than trendy.

Champion Attitude

I think the biggest thing I’ve noticed as a student and employee who spends a lot of time at LaHaye Rec & Fit is the way students speak to each other and to staff. As a staff member, we have to enforce dress code in the same way RAs have to. However, sometimes the gym staff gets spoken to disrespectfully and yelled at by students. As a student, we are called to follow policies set by the university and handle issues in a respectful manner. If you wouldn’t yell or curse at your RA, why are you acting that way toward a campus facility employee? Showing up to the gym in proper clothing, working out, and leaving feeling better about yourself is empowering! Our goal at Campus Recreation is to provide safe environments for our members and that includes monitoring that appropriate attire is worn in our facilities.

If you have questions or concerns about the LaHaye Rec & Fit dress code policies, please email lahayerec@liberty.edu.