January 28, 2023

A transgender woman was “devastated” when she discovered she was banned from the women-only gym she had recently joined after the owner said members would be uncomfortable exercising around a “big person with a masculine voice”. .

Brigid Klyne-Simpson said she signed a membership agreement at Bodyworks, a women’s gym located in Parksville, British Columbia, but then discovered she would have to go to its second location, a mixed-use facility, because she is trans. .

At first, Klyne-Simpson says that Bodyworks welcomed her with open arms. She said she met with a trainer on Friday who welcomed her, even hugged her, and told her that she would be safe in her gym.

However, the warm welcome was revoked just a few days later when she got a call saying they “made a mistake” that she shouldn’t be in the women-only venue, but could go to their mixed-use venue. location.

The owner, Dale Nagra, had told Klyne-Simpson that some of the gym-goers were uncomfortable. She said she was “extremely devastated” by the decision, saying “there’s really no other word for it.”

Transgender woman Brigid Klyne-Simpson said that after signing the membership agreement at Bodyworks, a gym located in Parksville, British Columbia, she discovered she would have to go to its second location, a mixed-use facility, because she is trans.

Bodyworks Fitness Is A Gym In Parksville With Two Locations.  One Is Co-Ed And Their Second Facility Is For Women Only.  The Sign (Pictured) Reads 'Fitness For Women & Tanning Salon'

Bodyworks Fitness is a gym in Parksville with two locations. One is co-ed and their second facility is for women only. The sign (pictured) reads ‘Fitness for Women & Tanning Salon’

Kyle-Simpson said CHEK News that she had been a member of co-ed gyms before, but never felt comfortable due to the majority of the male members, and felt like herself in a women-only gym.

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“It was important to me to be in a place where I explicitly accept, like, ‘You’re a woman, you can be here,’ she said.

She shared that she dropped out of college because she said she was “intimidated to be in the college gym with a bunch of mostly very muscular guys.”

“So finding a women’s gym seemed really exciting, and now that I’ve left, I understand why I felt uncomfortable in the other place.”

Last Friday, a few days after signing up for Bodyworks Fitness, she had her first personal training session. She said that she had a training session of more than an hour, she felt excited and said that she had a ‘great’ time.

“One of the trainers there greeted me and was very nice and basically realized right away that I’m trans and said I’d be welcome there and specifically said I’d be safe too and even gave me a hug,” Klyne-Simpson said. .

But on Monday she got the call from the same person who had trained her, and she remembered being told: ‘Sorry, we made a mistake, you’re not supposed to be here, but you can use the mixed facilities. ,’ she said.

Despite Klyne-Simpson’s distress, the gym owner stood by what he was told.

“We want them to feel comfortable, but we also have to worry about the young girls that this gym is set up for and the women and how their parents are going to feel that they’re there, and then this guy comes in with a totally masculine voice and great person.” Nagra said.

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“So now you choose the consolation of the male identifying as female… and then anyone can walk in and say, ‘Okay, I identify as female and I want to be able to come in.’

So do we choose the comfort of the transgender person, and they might not be as comfortable with the co-ed gym, but at least that’s an alternative, or do we choose the comfort of the young women who train there, that might not be? Be comfortable?’

Dale Nagra, (Pictured), Owner Of Bodyworks Fitness, Stood By What She Told New Member Klyne-Simpson That She Could Use The Co-Ed Facility Since Her Female Members Were Not Comfortable With Her Using The Women-Only Gym.

Dale Nagra, (pictured), owner of Bodyworks Fitness, stood by what she told new member Klyne-Simpson that she could use the co-ed facility since her female members were not comfortable with her using the women-only gym.

Kyle-Simpson Told Chek News That He Dropped Out Of College Because He Said He Was

Kyle-Simpson told CHEK News that she dropped out of college because she said she was “intimidated to be in the college gym with a bunch of mostly very muscular guys.” “So finding a women’s gym seemed really exciting, and now that I’ve left, I understand why I felt uncomfortable in the other place.”

A Street View Of Bodyworks Fitness Located In Parksville, British Columbia

A street view of Bodyworks Fitness located in Parksville, British Columbia

Nagra explained that Klyne-Simpson is not their first transgender member. She said she has a number of transgender clients at the Parksville co-ed gym, which is equipped with women’s, men’s and gender-neutral locker rooms.

“We already have transgender people here and all kinds of people, we don’t discriminate at all,” Nagra said.

“We have minority employees, so we are not saying there are no solutions, we are looking for a solution and we are not discriminatory people.”

Klyne-Simpson said she understands that people may feel uncomfortable if they’ve never met a transgender person before, but she believes “education” is all it takes.

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“Once you understand that trans women are women, trans men are men, non-binary people are who they say they are, it’s that simple,” she said.

If you still feel uncomfortable afterwards, that’s up to you, not me. I am who I am, it’s as simple as that. I just look different. That’s all.’

Although Klyne-Simpson said she will not return to Bodyworks Fitness, she said she has reached out to the British Columbia human rights commissioner and Alberni Valley Pride to help others who may be in the same position.

“Even though I never intended to be a random activist or anything, I feel like maybe I have some responsibility, that I have to make sure it doesn’t happen to anyone because that happened to me,” she said.

Right-wing American political commentator and author Matt Walsh posted on his Twitter page stating: “Not a single human being on Earth honestly believes that this person is a woman.”

He reposted hours later: “By the way, when I say that not a single person on Earth believes it, I include the person in the video.”