Landyn Pan

Landyn Pan ’17 is Transforming Lives in the LGBTQ+ Community Through Fitness Landyn Pan ’17, a trans fitness and nutrition coach, is breaking down barriers and building inclusive spaces for LGBTQ+ individuals in the fitness world.

In the world of fitness, finding a space that feels welcoming can be a challenge, especially for those in the LGBTQ+ community. Landyn Pan ’17, a trans fitness and nutrition coach, was determined to create a more inclusive environment.

“Chapman was where I was in my first two years on testosterone,” said Pan. “It was my first few years living as a different gender, being perceived that way by other people. The experience was very formative.”

After starting testosterone, Pan was excited to start building muscle and ultimately turned to weightlifting. “I felt more connected to my body. I loved feeling strong and I loved the way I looked,” they said.

Pan credits their first year of working out as a major change in their life.

“I felt like a big barrier for me was partially my identity, not feeling like I fit into these spaces,” added Pan. “Going to the gym seemed like this ‘guy thing.’ I thought this might have been a big barrier for other trans people. That’s what prompted me to help other people feel like they belonged in these spaces too.”

Pan, who majored in public relations and minored in television, was determined to work in the entertainment industry upon graduating, and landed a job working for MTV, doing social media, production and editing. Like many others, however, they were laid off during the pandemic.

“During the lockdown, when I didn’t have a job, I was still doing freelance social media and producing work, mainly for this yoga influencer, Jessamyn Stanley,” added Pan. “I spent the other half of my time doing personal training out of my basement gym and some online coaching as well. Over time I started to think I could do fitness full-time, and I had to make that happen.”

After becoming a full-time fitness coach, Pan started Landyn Pan Fitness, where they specialize in helping LGBTQ+ community members feel more gender-affirmed, confident and connected to their bodies by building strength and muscle.

​​Pan emphasized the importance of understanding that queer and trans people view fitness and their bodies through a different lens.

“One of my clients has goals that are pretty similar to the average guy, but because they were in spaces that were just CIS and straight, they didn’t connect with fitness in that way because there is just that barrier,” said Pan. “You feel like there are slight differences and nuances with yourself that other people just don’t get.”

Avoiding assumptions is important to Pan. “I’ll ask everybody the same questions, and even though sometimes I hear the same answers between people, I’m not going to assume what they’re going to say,” they said. “Even that surface-level goal [of] building muscle, that means different things for different people.”

Pan believes fitness should be viewed holistically and that one must be mindful of mental health throughout the whole process. Ultimately, Pan emphasizes the importance of working out in spaces most comfortable for you.

“If you want to be in the gym, know that half the anxiety of being a beginner goes away if you just have a plan,” said Pan. “I also want people to know that they should also take up the space. You belong no matter what. If you’re the first one there, you can inspire people after you.”

Paul Pe

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