As an entire, the internet, and much more specifically social media, have brought lots of best to strength sports. On a daily basis, we\’ve the supply of multiple great-minded coaches, athletes, and media outlets at our fingertips. Yet, with every positive thing in everyday life, there’s always a chance of some bad, as well as in this case, which comes by means of bullying.

We’ve discussed women in powerlifting receiving weird comments before, but not so much bullying. In a single of weightlifter?Alyssa Ritchey’s latest Instagram posts, she highlights a bullying-focused comment by having an open letter. The letter brings lots of good suggests light, and it was perfectly received. To explore her motivation to create this particular letter and just what others can do to combat bullying, I reached out.

Thanks and shout out to Morning Chalk Up for initially highlighting this informative article.?

Have you ever gotten negative comments before this occasion? What made you need to react to this specific discuss the topic of bullying?

Richey: I rarely obtain a comment such as this one, several negative ones here and there, but nothing crazy. I wanted to respond with kindness. Basically would respond back saying something hateful, then it only fuels the fire. Besides, two wrongs don\’t create a right. I needed to be a good example. It took me about 5-minutes to create that letter. I did it in-between sets as i was lifting. It was comparable time my sister sent me the screen shot of the comment made by the person.

I was bullied in high school my junior and senior year, and quite frankly, I am over it.

I am not the type of woman to sit around and let someone be mean. Being bold myself is essential. I would like people to know this isn\’t okay. I wanted to become a voice for all the women/men that get bullied to exhibit them it’s OKAY to stand up for yourself, but do it with the love in your heart. We never know what a person is going through right now so despite how awful their words are towards us. Try a different approach & kill all of them with kind words & love from the heart. They might need which more than you know.

In your opinion, do you see more negative comments on women\’s lifting videos/photos when compared with men\’s? If so, so why do you think this is? And why do you believe they exist at all?

Ritchey: I do not search for the negative comments. I hear some of my friends talk about the mean or rude comments they receive on social networking or perhaps the public eye. I do not think our society is fully okay with females being muscular, just yet. However, I\’m sure there are lots of more and more people in our generation that accept it now & think its beautiful. It\’s all regulated in how we, ourselves perceive your comments ought to, looks, & gestures.

I think people, outside of the fitness world, stare and make comments since they\’re unfamiliar with seeing women with muscles. I think most of its innocent unless the comment is completely absurd and rude. I\’d a woman within the farmer\’s market reach me and say \”I\’m sorry I do not mean anything bad, however your arms are really beautiful and so muscular. I love them\”. I smiled & said thanks. But all I possibly could think about is why did she say sorry! There is no reason. I really like my biceps. Proceed, tell me their jacked, ripped, huge, muscular because they are sexy in my experience. They\’re my work horses.

When I walk into a grocery store within my spandex or in the airport with a cut off tee, I get looks. However, I know, I look good. So I think that they have to think I look fabulous to (laughs). Should you still let the negativity in, then its likely to hurt you. Should you truly love everything regarding your LOOK, YOUR BODY, then no silly comment, weird look, or gesture will hurt you.

I\’m not sure why this negativity exists. But us muscular women are on our method to changing the societal norms of the world. There will be much more of us later on – you\’ll see!

Do you\’ve any strategies for female [and male] athletes who may receive negative comments on their posts? How can you discover their whereabouts & what do you remind yourself of?

Ritchey: Do not ever stop being who you are just because someone doesn\’t approve. Be you and always would you. You will never experience life to its fullest if you are always worrying what individuals think. It’s empowering and delightful to feel strong, but it is even more empowering so that you can make use of your strengths to improve your lifetime. If you value lifting heavy weight above your head, then keep doing it. Do not ever stop for anyone.

I don\’t remind myself of anything since i truly don\’t care what individuals think. Becoming an adult like a strong muscular young lady from 12-17 year old, I had been always known for having big quads and biceps. I thought it was perfectly normal and delightful. I felt powerful within my little muscular defined body. I loved my body. I wasn\’t concerned about the way I looked. It was more about the way I performed for my sport at the time. I had been happiest after i was winning. I had been a sports athlete. I didn\’t care about a certain body type. I just desired to crush my competition.

What advice can you share with all social networking users who receive negative feedback on their own posts? Have you got any ideas how we change the negative comment mindsets?

Ritchey: Its always likely to be there. The only way it\’ll ever change is that if we handle it within the appropriate manner. And when you do not feel like coping with it, then switch off your comments on Instagram that is what T-Swift does!

Do you have any takeaway messages (outside of your post) for bullies who put others down behind their screens?

Think before you decide to type. Be more kind. Being hateful doesn\’t solve anything & if you are planning to say something hurtful, just don\’t. Keep it to yourself. You can really hurt someone by a small comment which you may think is harmless. Because the old saying goes, \”Treat others the way you want to be treated.\”

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