10 things to avoid doing in the gym
The importance of gym etiquette cannot be overstated IMO. Unfortunately, there’s always some individuals in every facility (and over the previous 4 decades I have trained in many) who fail to abide by this golden rule. Im sure many of you will be familiar with some or all of these no-no’s in the gymnasium. There are many more but here are 10 off the top of my head.
1. Not wiping down the free weight benches, machines, handles or seating after use
If you tend to sweat a lot during your workouts, as some do, others will understandably not wish to come into contact with it.
Leaving your sweat on the resistance machines, cardio machines, or free weight benches and not wiping it off is gross and disgusting. Can’t fathom the motivation for doing this or if it’s just lazyness.
From a sanitary perspective it’s also important to keep the gym clean this includes the floor and machine handles.
2. Sitting on benches or machines but not using them
This behaviour has become endemic in recent years and is inconsiderate and downright annoying to other gym users. This is one of the biggest no-no’s in the gymnasium, even more so when its busy! I’ve seen dudes completing their set, and then proceed to scroll through their text messages, social media feed and Tinder for 5 to 10 minutes during their “rest” time while someone else is waiting for the equipment they’re planted on.
If you’re resting for more than 30 seconds and there are others waiting, either finish or let them work in with you (if you are on a machine).
3. Excessive grunting
Every gym seems to have one of these guys and yes it is usually guys. The women tend to squeal which is equally distracting. It doesent impress anyone and just makes you sound like an idiot. Additionally it is a distraction to others training.
4. Dropping the weights
Another annoying habit. Instead of lowering weights under control when doing for example flyes or seated presses these dudes just drop the dumbells about two feet to the ground. Not only does this potentially damage the floor, but you’re going to need to pick them back up to either use them again or to put them away. Additionally rubber weights have a habit of bouncing potentially into other gym users.
5. Not putting weights away
If you’re strong enough to pick them up then your strong enough to put them back in the racks. This slogan is now posted on the wall of my local gym. However I’ve lost count of the times I’ve had to avoid tripping over dumbells on the gym floor others have used but couldn’t be bothered to return to the racks.
Re-racking your weights is basic common courtesy, and if you’re not willing to do it, go train in your garage.
6. Hitting on other trainees by using the gym as a courtship setting or dating website
The gym is designed as a means of training the body and not to preen pout or otherwise use to attract potentual sexual partners. Unfortunately this is all too prevalent even amongst some personal trainers renting out the gym. My daughter had to recently cancel her personal training sessions as her trainer had started to hit on her.
7. Attempting to chat to someone who is wearing headphones
If someone is wearing headphones this is a message to other trainees that they are in the gym to train and not to chat. Fairly obvious I would have thought, but apparently not. Aside from disturbing their mindset if you insist on talking to someone they then have to first turn off their music and then remove their headphones before they can even engage with you.
8. Wearing excessive cologne, perfume or body spray
Why do people do this? The gym is not a night club or dating agency.
9. Leaving your free weights on the bar
This is one of the most commonly occurring no-no’s in the gymnasium.
There’s a couple of guys in my local gym who used to do this usually in the power rack after rack pulls or after a heavy bench session.
It means other trainees have to spend an inordinate amount of time taking their plates off the bar before being able to commence their own warm up sets. These dudes think it’s impressive to leave 200 plus kilos on the bar but it’s just inconsiderate. No one cares what you can lift, so leave your ego at the gym door. If you were capable of lifting the weights onto the machine or the bar, then you’re fully capable of taking them off when you’re finished. There’s no legitimate excuses here.
Have some consideration for other gym users and empty the bar when you’ve finished with it please.
10. Not using the squat rack for its intended purpose.
We’ve all seen this and it’s just too prevalent. It’s not just curling in the squat rack either. Some trainees use it for rack overhead presses also which is doubly annoying when there is an adjacent power rack in the gym.
Please avoid these no-no’s in the gymnasium.
Be aware of appropriate gym etiquette and treat others as you would like to be treated.
Train smart and train hard.