Gym Etiquette

Some people call it a gym, some people call it a fitness center, and some people call it a health club. Whatever you call one thing that’s constant is the term “gym etiquette” and it seems to be lost in most gyms, at least most gyms I’ve been to. Before I get to my list let me define etiquette – a code of behavior that delineates expectations for social behavior according to contemporary conventional norms within a society, social class, or group.

My gym etiquette list has 2 number ones on it. The reason for this is I feel both these issues and extremely important (for different reasons).  One is for common courtesy, and the other for general health.

Please return weights and dumbbells to the proper racks. When you finish with an exercise strip down the bar and put the plates back on the proper racks. Just because you can bench press 400 pounds doesn’t mean the person who uses the bench next can or should have to lift 45pound plates and put them away for you. It only takes a few seconds to strip the bar down so it’s ready for the next person. Also put the plates on the proper racks not the most convenient racks. Same goes for dumbbells, after you finish your 90 pound dumbbell presses put them back on the dumbbell rack in their proper place side by side with each other so the next person who needs the bench doesn’t have to put them away for you. And last on this subject whether you use 5 pound dumbbells or 50 pound dumbbells put them away together so that the next person who needs them doesn’t have to spend 10 minutes trying to find a matching set.

Please wipe your sweat of the equipment when finished using it. You would think this is a no brainer however it’s alarming how many people just walk away from the puddle and never give it a second thought. Once again, it only takes a couple of seconds to grab a paper towel and the disinfectant that most gyms keep around and wipe down the bench so it’s clean for the next user.

Let people “work in”. You’re on the latt pull down machine, you need to rest a minute between sets anyway, so why is it a problem to let someone jump in with you. It just takes pulling out a pin to adjust the weight and it’s a good way to time your sets.

Most people are at the gym to workout, if you’re having a conversation with your buddy don’t do it on a piece of equipment, move off to the side so that others can have access to the equipment.

Every gym I’ ever worked out in has a sound system with music playing throughout the entire facility. When you use your I-pod it just makes you rude (usually unintentional), you don’t know if someone is close to you because you can’t hear what going on around you. In my opinion this is a safety issue. I’ve had 2 people walk into me in the past month because they were looking down at their I-pods while walking across the gym. Big deal if you don’t like the music the gym plays, you can deal with it for an hour.

Don’t yell, scream, and grunt. It doesn’t help you lift heavier weight or get more reps, and the guy spotting you and also yelling is helping you lift it anyway, so even though he’s saying it’s all you; it’s not.

The gym is for everyone who pays to be there. Everyone needs to demonstrate some basic common sense and courtesy so everyone can have a good stress free workout every visit.

That’s all for now….

Peace…

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