The Ecstatic Pump and the Logic of Pain: Learning Processes and Embodiment in Fitness Culture

Jesper Andresson, Kevin Holger Mogensen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapterResearchpeer-review


Emanating from ethnographic fieldwork, this chapter focus on the physical expressions and intensity of embodiment that occur in gym and fitness environments. More precisely, the chapter aims to describe and analyse learning processes among dedicated gym-goers, and how knowledge about exercise, nutrition and physiology is gradually learned and physically experienced, eventually becoming knowledge 'in the body' rather than 'about the body'. The results show how fitness athletes move between different forms of embodiment and how emotionally expressive and sensational aspects of the body are re-conceptualized, turning into new tactile abilities that were previously unexplored or inaccessible. Situated within a long tradition of body studies and sociological explorations of embodiment, the chapter interprets and understand the performing body as a site for both social and corporeal sensations and learning processes.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLearning Movements : New Perspectives of Movement Education
EditorsHåkan Larsson
Number of pages25
Place of PublicationNew York
Publication date2021
ISBN (Print)9780367356811
ISBN (Electronic)9781003142775
Publication statusPublished - 2021
SeriesRoutledge Studies in Physical Education and Youth Sport

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