10 Gym Etiquettes to follow.
Whether a newbie or a veteran at the gym, there are some gym do’s and don’t that we need to be aware of. While most gym etiquettes stem from courtesy & common sense, we may not find all of these in the gym rule book. Some people know and follow gym etiquettes others know but do not follow gym etiquettes. Here are the 10 gym etiquettes that everyone should know and follow.
#1 Wear Clean & Comfortable Clothes:
It is important to dress appropriately depending on what exercise we plan to do. Wear breathable clothes. They may not necessarily be cotton but, make sure they are stretchable. Tight or inelastic clothes may result in a restricted range of motion or worst, an uncomfortable tear in the middle of a set. All the clothes including undergarments, sweatbands and socks need to be washed after every workout session. Unwashed clothes may stink and can be a breeding ground for harmful bacteria. Hence, it’s best to wear washed clothes for every workout session. Also, too short or revealing clothes are a strict no at the gym and this applies to both, women, and men.
#2 Do Not use your Phone:
Ideally, lock your phone in the locker or shut it down. If that’s too much to do, at least keep it on silent or flight mode or turn off the internet. While in the gym, do not use your phone unnecessarily to check Instagram, Facebook or other social media channels, news, tracking the stock market, talking to someone etc. With automated replies and status messages, let people know that you are doing something important and will get back to them in some time. Remember to use the phone only during emergencies. These measures will help give importance to exercising and increase focus.
#3 Carry your Towel/ Napkin:
It is important to carry a towel/ napkin not only to keep ourselves clean but also to clean up the equipment after use. For example, while bench pressing a towel acts as a barrier between us and the bench, protecting us from coming in direct contact with the bench and protecting the bench from our sweat. While most gyms do not make it a compulsion to use a towel/ napkin, it is a basic hygiene factor. Also, always use a fresh (washed) towel/ napkin for every workout session.
#4 Stack Up your Weights & Clean Up the Mess:
It is important to do heavy workouts but, it is even more important to stack up the weights to where there belong after the sets are complete. It is very disrespectful to leave dumbbells on the floor or plates on the barbell or an inclined treadmill after use. So, please stack up the weights and clean up the mess after you are done.
#5 No Bro-Science:
Fitness is science. There is absolutely no room for bro-science or opinions regarding fitness and nutrition. On the gym floor, it becomes even more important to not follow or preach something that is even remotely unscientific or opinionated. Why follow or preach opinions when the subject is purely scientific?
#6 Prioritise Training over everything else:
The whole point of coming to the gym is to invest time & effort in training & getting fitter, stronger. Everything else has little or no importance. If you are going to the gym to fulfil any other requirement then, the gym is not the best place for the same. Chit chatting, flirting, networking, bird watching etc. can be practised elsewhere. You don’t have unlimited time and you are paying the gym membership fees. At the gym, give utmost priority to training.
#7 Respect the equipment:
It is unethical and wrong to disrespect gym equipment like barbells, dumbbells, treadmills, elliptical cycles, air conditioning systems etc. No point in banging the dumbbells on the floor or plates while doing a deadlift or keeping the air conditioning/ lights/ fans on without requirement. It only shows arrogance. Treat all gym resources respectfully.
#8 Follow the Queue:
Our time is as important as everyone else’s. If there is a queue to use the treadmill, elliptical cycle, barbell, dumbbell etc. please follow it. Do not skip the queue and neither allow anyone to do the same. Also, when it’s your time to use the equipment, use it considering there are others like you who are waiting in the queue. Use the equipment for a reasonable time or for the maximum of what is specified in the gym rule book. Be accommodative and respect everyone's time (including yours) by following the queue.
#9 Do Not Scream your guts out:
Yes, aggression, swearing and yelling do get the adrenaline pumping and may help lift heavier, sprint faster, run longer etc. but, it is important to remember that there are people around who may not like it. Yelling abusive words or screaming while exercising may make people around you feel uncomfortable. It can go to the extremes where people around you may request you to stop doing it or may complain to the gym manager resulting in your membership termination. So, unless it’s your private gym where no one is around, please do not scream your guts out.
#10 Stay Out of Sight:
If someone is in the middle of doing a set, allow the person to fully complete the set. Look at their eyes and figure out if you are or would be in their line of sight while they do the set. Possibly the person is checking their form in the mirror and you are the last thing expected to be in their line of sight. Most people can’t even workout without looking at their reflection in the mirror. Hence, as a thumb rule, never come in the line of sight of a person when they are exercising.
Some Bonus & Dumb Recommendations on Gym Etiquettes:
No curls in the squat rack.
Spotting is for giving cues and not for physically assisting with the lift.
Beware of the queue behind you and once you are done, notify the person who is next.
Read the gym rules and regulations. Follow them.
The gym is a place to train. No flirting, please!
Men, stop staring and please do not make women feel uncomfortable during a workout.
Do not share unsolicited advice unless asked. Not even science.
Photos are good before and after the workout and not during the workout.
Music is great only if it is for you and only you. Avoid playing your music on the gym speakers. Maybe others do not like it.
Hope the article helped in understanding the 10 gym etiquettes to follow.