You manage to wake up early, put on your workout pants, and actually make it to the gym. And you do this every single day, without fail. That’s an achievement in itself and we agree on that – your dedication to the workout is top-notch. But, have you ever wondered about your behaviour in the gym and the possibility of it being, well, not-so-top-notch? We don’t really blame you, the rules of gym etiquette are never really openly talked about, but you’re supposed to be aware of them. Consider this list your rulebook to the “dos” and “don’ts” at the gym.
1. Follow The “Written” Rules
Yes, we know that this isn’t really the secret code of conduct that we were talking about earlier, but it’s the first step. Not all gyms follow the same set of rules. Your previous gym might have allowed you to drop weights or bare-lift, but your current one might not. The number of people who don’t care about these “written” rules is surprisingly high. If your gym has rules posted on the walls, carefully read them. And follow them.
2. Keep Your Workout Clothes Fresh
You might not be able to shower before working out – and that’s understandable – but your workout clothes definitely need a shower! Wash your gym pants and wear a clean set every time you enter the gym. You don’t want to announce your arrival with a sweaty scent. Besides, you’re going to sweat even more by the end of your workout. And your extra-sweaty gym shirt is the stuff of nobody’s fantasy.
3. Never Forget To Use Your Towel
Do you like spotting a sweaty silhouette right before you occupy the exercise bike? That’s right. Nobody does. So, every time (Every. Single. Time.) you’re done with an equipment, use your towel to wipe away the sweat you’ve left on its surface. No excuses!1
4. Don’t Leave Your Equipment Lying Around
After using an equipment, make sure to put it away neatly – even if you’re running out of time! “Ain’t nobody got time for that” doesn’t apply to gyms. If you’re working with dumbbells, put them back from where you picked them up. Never leave your equipment lying around – nobody likes a mess!
5. Don’t Hog An Equipment
Every gym has that one guy who uses the treadmill for what feels like hours and treats the gym like his own private space. If you’re that guy, listen up. Don’t hog an equipment for too long, especially if someone’s eyeing it. Most people might not actually ask you to move over, but rest assured that under their breath, they’re muttering expletives directed at you.
6. Don’t “Victory Shriek”
While we understand that there’s no better feeling than successfully completing 20 pull-ups, it’s not cool to “victory shriek” over it. Conversely, if there’s a particularly hard exercise you’re struggling to finish, don’t “argh” or “ooh” loudly. Nobody needs to know with what ease (or its lack thereof) you can complete an exercise. Don’t go primal on your gym-mates – they probably won’t appreciate the distraction.
7. Don’t Work Out When You’re Sick
You’ve recently caught an infection from your colleague. You ought to be on your bed, drinking fluids and getting some rest. But instead, you tell yourself that you’re okay and drag yourself to the gym. Let us give you a word of advice. Go back home and get on that bed. Most gym-goers are health conscious and don’t want to fall sick. So, don’t go to the gym when you’re sick. If you’re recovering from an illness, wear a mask and don’t sneeze on the gym equipment or god forbid, on your gym-partner.
8. Gym Selfies Are A No-No
If you’re constantly taking mirror selfies of your flexed muscle, you might want to keep the camera away for this one. Watching people flex their muscle and take mirror selfies is one of the most dreaded pet peeves of most gym-goers. It’s not considered very cool. Of course, it’s okay to click a selfie once in a while, but if that’s all you do, you might want to put an end to the constant clicking.
9. Don’t Be The “Know-It-All”
Seriously, don’t. Even if you do know it all. Don’t go around giving unsolicited advice to everybody in sight. Nobody wants to be told that they need to be working harder or what equipment is the best for them. That’s what instructors are for.
10. Don’t Be Creepy
The number of women who feel uncomfortable during a work out is alarming, all thanks to the oglers. Don’t stare at any woman (or man, for that matter), even if you’re impressed by what they’re doing. It’s inappropriate, distracting, and makes you the “perv” nobody wants to be around.
Whether you’re a beginner or a gym junkie, this is the unwritten code of conduct that everybody expects you to follow. Now that you know what you should and shouldn’t do at the gym, share these rules of gym etiquette with all your workout buddies, and make the gym a better – and cleaner – place.
|↑1||American Council on Exercise (ACE’s) Top Ten Mistakes People Make in the Gym. Brookhaven National Laboratory.|