Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Don't Forget Your Gym Etiquette

With it being the new year, resolutions are being made and gym passes are being bought. Whether you're new to the gym scene, coming back after a break, or you've been going to the gym all along, it's nice to review your gym etiquette. So let's talk a little bit about what gym etiquette means and how to make sure yours is good.

The most important thing for gym etiquette would be to read/know the gym rules and follow them. Not every gym has the same rules, so when you join a new gym make sure you know what the rules are and follow them.

When it comes to leaving equipment before your done with it (for example, you leave the treadmill to use the bathroom or get a drink) mark your territory by leaving something like your towel, jacket, or water bottle or something to say that you're coming back. And then make it a quick trip so that you're not leaving the equipment, and making someone else wait, for too long.

To go along with the last one, don't take other people's equipment. If their stuff is on it, if you just saw them walk away, if the treadmill is still on the treadmill, don't just get on and use it.  Here's a little story as an example. We have a very small HOA gym in our neighborhood. The other day I got there and got the treadmill ready and then decided I'd better use the bathroom before I start running. (I've had 3 kids...) So I left my water bottle and my coat on the treadmill and left the treadmill on but not running. When I got back in someone had gotten on the treadmill and started using it. I was gone for maybe 2 minutes. And my stuff was clearly on it. Then when I got back they didn't offer the treadmill back to me when I had said I wasn't done with it. I'm sure they didn't think much of it, they weren't trying to be rude. They just didn't think about it before they acted.  So I had to change up my workout so that I could still get something in for the day.  If you're not sure if someone is done with the equipment, ask them, if they aren't done, wait patiently for your turn.

Along with those two, don't guard equipment. Your gym pass doesn't mean you own the gym equipment. Just like pre-school, you have to share it. Take your turn, cleaning it up, put it back.  If you're doing circuits, pick to do things that are close together so that you don't have to wander too far from the equipment you're using. If you're done with it, clean it up, put it back or turn it off so that someone else can use it.

Keep to yourself. Not every person you see wants your advice on how to do their workout better (in your opinion). Yes, some people are less educated on how to do certain things, but if they don't ask, they don't want your opinion on it. So unless they are going to hurt someone or themselves, leave them alone and focus on your own workout.

Clean what you used. Just like at home, you have chores when you go to the gym. Wipe down your equipment, especially if you've sweat a lot or if you're fighting off a cold or something. If you don't wipe it down you're spreading it around. Everyone is at the gym to be healthy, no one wants to leave the gym to get sick when they get home. Plus it's just gross to grab a matt and find that its drenched in someone else's sweat.Clean your equipment and put it back where you got it.

Watch your language. You don't have to be a potty mouth to prove how good you are at working out. No one is there to listen to you drop the f-bomb or use other language. So whether that helps you feel tough or not, help others feel more comfortable at the gym by using good language and nice tone and don't be a jerk.

Remember that you're in a public place. While it might be nice to have your own gym or the whole gym to yourself, that's not the case. Others are using the facility too, so it's important to remember your manners and your volume.  Be kind, thoughtful of others, and encouraging. You can do that by following these gym etiquette tips.

Do you belong to a gym?

What is your biggest gym going pet peeve?


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