As a teenager, the high school locker room can be an intimidating place. Freshmen and even junior high students who haven't had a physical education class in past years probably will be nervous about being in the high school locker room for the first time, but it's usually not as bad in a locker room as students make it out to be. Locker rooms can even be fun, all depending on your attitude of course. Even if your high school locker room experiences have not been the best, you can still make good memories out of your locker room experiences. Friends can have a lot of fun while getting ready for gym class, even if most of that fun is light-hearted complaining about the physical education activities. While the idea of communal showers is probably not the most appealing idea to a lot of teens, high school locker rooms overall are not that bad, and since physical education is a required part of high school, at least if you want to graduate, then you might as well have some fun with it!
What to Expect in a High School Locker Room
When you are getting ready to experience a locker room for the first time in your adolescent years, it can be a terrifying thing. Depending on your school and type of gym class, some things to expect in a high school locker room are:
- Changing in front of the girls/guys in your class. Don't worry, everyone has to do it, and it probably isn't as bad as you think it will be. Some locker rooms have bathroom or shower stalls that you can have a little privacy in as well.
- Communal showering. Some gym locker rooms have a communal shower, which is usually just a bunch of showerheads lined along the wall, or they may have individual shower stalls where you can wash up. Depending on what your schools rules are, you may or may not have to take a shower after your gym class. If your school has a pool, then you will probably have to take a shower before getting in the water.
- Locker locks and combinations. For girls especially, locking your locker room locker is probably a good idea. If you carry a purse, any sort of valuable item such as a cell phone or MP3 player, or money with you to school, then you should lock it away safely in your locker to deter thieves. Locker combinations might be able to be set to something you can easily remember, though most locker locks have a pre-set combination.
Bullying can be a problem in some high school locker rooms. Younger kids and sometimes even the "popular" teens in a locker room can be subject to teasing, and even bullying. There is a fine line between good-natured teasing or joking around, and bullying. Bullying is considered anything that hurts a person's feelings, physical body, or forces them to do something against their will. Most schools have a zero tolerance policy for bullies and bullying, so if you or a friend gets into trouble with a bully in a locker room, always report it to a teacher or parent immediately. If you are the bully, then keep in mind that not only is bullying not nice, it can get you in some serious trouble with your school, such as suspension and even expulsion from school. A few examples of bullying might be:
- Provoking fights
- Physical or mental abuse
Surviving your school's locker room is a part of growing up, and if you have the right attitude, it can even be fun!