Every New Year, gyms around the world see a surge in new membership as people resolve to shape up and lose weight or gain muscle in the new year. Every year, regular gym-goers brace themselves for a flood of newbies who don’t know how to conduct themselves and observe appropriate gym etiquette. Lack of gym etiquette often leads Regulars of the gym experience a phenomenon known as “Gym Rage”. What follows is a selection of gym etiquette rules to help keep new members out of trouble with regular gym members ……
Unload your weights
As a Powerlifter I am often loading and unloading over 100 kg on many exercises and still find the time to re-rack my own weights. I never leave the weight on the bar and neither should you. The reasons for this are many including preventing weaker members of the gym from using that equipment simply because they are not strong enough to unload your bar or machine. Also don’t wedge small plates behind the larger 15 and 20 kg plates. Each size has a place on the weight tree, put them back in the right place. Dumbbells should be placed back in the rack after use, they do not live on the floor.
No curls in the squat rack
Every so often I see gym goers curling in the squat rack. Why is this a bad thing? Well, what if I want to squat?! , being respectful of other people and only using equipment in the manner it was intended, is gym etiquette 101. The squat rack is an essential piece of safety equipment for squatting heavy weight and unless your in a dedicated powerlifting gym there is usually only rack in the whole gym.
Sometimes you can’t help it. But don’t be the idiot that is deadlifting on the weakest spot of the gym, on the wooden floor, with no rubbers and just slams the weight down in victory. Respect the equipment and the gym floor. Dropped weights can also be dangerous to other lifters, especially if they bounce onto feet and ankles.
Don’t interrupt during a set
Most regular lifters will be happy to tell you that they have X sets left on the equipment they are using, but not in the middle of a set. Interrupting someone who is in the middle of an exercise is not only rude, but dangerous. Distracting someone during a technical lift can cause injury. Allow people that are lifting to have some space to get it done.
Don’t use multiple pieces of equipment in peak times
taking up multiple pieces of equipment during peak times, or while others are waiting to use them is just bad manners, If you want to do circuit training or super sets, do them when the gym is quiet.
Wear appropriate clothing
When training ensure that shorts are long enough to conceal your private parts; if you are wearing ultra-skimpy attire and are practically falling out of your clothing, you should not be surprised or offended if others stare at you while you are training. This also applies to woman wearing shirts and Bra’s which are to small or not suited to sports activity.
Keep your music to yourself
This applies to both singing along to the music only you can hear in your headphones, but also playing your music on speaker, everybody has different tastes in music, don’t inflict yours on everybody else.