Gym etiquette is something that should hold at practically every gym. Suppose you work out where people are not considerate of the others working out. In that case, Perry Adam Lieber, a personal trainer from Santa Barbara, CA, feels that you should consider taking your business elsewhere or possibly contacting management. It’s simply common sense to respect those around you while you are exercising. That being said, here are some tips to help make your gym experience much more enjoyable for everyone involved.
There is nothing more frustrating than trying to work out to have someone standing directly next to you hogging all the weights you need because they’re only doing one set instead of multiple sets. It’s also just as bad when somebody uses an exercise machine without wiping down the seat after they finish using it.
According to Perry Adam Lieber, some other bad habits that people regularly display at the gym include not re-racking their weights, leaving sweat all over equipment after they finish using it. Wearing inappropriate clothes (and potentially smelly) and talking too much on their cell phone during their workout is also high on the list of major annoyances. These behaviors can be infuriating for other people to work out, not listen to others chatter away about things that don’t concern anyone else.
Here are a few general rules that will serve you well no matter where you’re working out.
Come In Proper Workout Clothes
Wearing street clothes or just a t-shirt is not always the best bet at the gym. It would be best always to come dressed in proper workout clothes, which means athletic shorts and a t-shirt covered by a more professional shirt (such as an Under Armour technical shirt). Some gyms require shoes to be taken off before entering, so bring along some clean socks with you too. Remember that Ill-fitting clothing can be a detriment. Tight clothing can cause chafing, while baggy clothing can get in the way while lifting or running.
Always Ask Before You Touch
It may seem obvious to some, but you should always ask before touching any weight equipment or machines at the gym. There’s nothing worse than somebody jumping on your machine before you have finished with it. Also, ensure that you wipe down equipment when you use it, so others don’t have to deal with your sweaty germ spreader hands.
Keep Your Phone Calls And Conversations Short
People like their privacy, space and peace while working out, so if you must take a phone call, be courteous enough to step away from other patrons or go into another area of the gym where people can still workout, just not directly by them. This goes for long conversations as well; keep them short and sweet.
Put Your Weights Back Where They Belong
If you are using free weights, make sure that you immediately put them back where they belong when you are finished with your set. This goes for dumbbells, too. Perry Adam Lieber advises that you pick them up by the end of the dumbbell, not by the middle, so others won’t have to deal with sharp edges after you’re done with them. Ask staff if clarification is needed on this matter.
Keep The Equipment Where It Belongs
This is very similar to the point above. If you are using equipment, make sure that it is put back in its proper place so others can use it without having to move it every single time they want to use it.
Always Clean Up After Yourself
You should bring a towel and keep it in your gym bag so you can wipe down all equipment after using it. According to Perry Adam Lieber, people like their privacy when working out and germs spread quickly with sweaty people touching the same machines repeatedly.
Respect The Machines
Don’t be afraid to adjust it for your height or comfort if you are using a machine. If it’s too short, ask the staff if you can have another one brought out. If it’s too long, ask them to shorten it, so you don’t have to hunch over while doing your cardio workout.
Be Mindful of Your Surroundings
It’s very annoying when someone is grunting and groaning, throwing weights all over the place while lifting. It can also be annoying for people trying to do circuit training since they have to stop every time they’re finished lifting weights to avoid being hit with a flying dumbbell or weight that was carelessly thrown around.
Also, if you are using cardio equipment with an MP3 player attachment, don’t blast your music so loud that others can hear it two rooms down. This goes for any music playing device; keep the volume low enough, so others aren’t annoyed by it.
Please Bring a Towel and Use It
Bringing a towel with you to the gym is essential. This way, when you are finished using equipment, you can wipe it down so others won’t be bothered by your sweat and ickiness.
Respect Personal Space
If you are using machines, don’t be afraid to adjust them to have enough room. While it is nice to work out with others, this takes up space and can cause an awkward workout.
Time To Cool Down
To be a courteous gym-goer, it is important to make sure you are following the rules of gym etiquette. There’s nothing worse than somebody jumping on your machine right after you were finished with it or someone grunting and groaning while lifting weights because they’re too lazy to put them back where they belong when they’re done.