We hit the gym to build and support our muscles to stay in shape and have great toned physic. The people who gather at the gym have a common interest in them and that is to stay fit and strong. But they are different in nature and they act differently. Some people do not maintain some simple etiquette that can help the gym environment to be more pleasant and efficient. Many gyms have a written list of rules that we have to follow and there are some unwritten simple rules that we should follow at any gym to do our workout and let others do their workout peacefully and without any distraction. These are very common and natural behaviours or etiquettes that we can practice to solve the problem of the poor gym environment.
If you are an active gym member then you can feel or understand the need for gym etiquettes. There are some gym protocols that we maintain but we do not talk about it or write it in the rule book. We just feel the presence of such codes. For the new gym-goers, it is the most important aspect to learn about the basic gym behaviours for their own good and for the others too. It takes a lot of time, effort and money to maintain a good gym life, so preventing it with such obstacles can be considered as a loss. We certainly do not want that to happen.
We will discuss here some of the rules we should focus on and maintain for the health of our gym environment. So that it can help us in return.
1. Keep it clean and tidy
We use dumbbells or plates to lift some weights and to do some of the exercises. After finishing the sets some people put them on the floor and just forget about them. This is not the way to use it. Keep them in the proper place whenever you complete your sets. Put the dumbbells in the dumbbell rack, keep the plates accordingly as they were placed before your exercise. When you use a bench to do any bench related workout, place them properly so that it cannot block someone’s way. Even if you see any weights or dumbbells or any other object that should not be there, then it is your duty to put them to their suitable places. Or after using a machine put it in the normal mode like it was before so that anyone can use it without any difficulty. Keep your gym neat and clean. Do not mess it up with anything.
2. Do not skip leg day
This is nothing to do with gym etiquettes but it is a very common matter in any gym. I have seen many people to skip leg day or they just do not exercise their lower body. It is a mistake we should avoid. Imagine having a good muscular upper body with skinny legs. It will be the worst ever combination to have. You just don’t look good at all. Your skinny leg will not have the strength to carry your whole upper body if you do not work on your legs. You could feel pain in your lower joints of legs because of the lack of strength. Leg workout is so much important to give your body a proper balance of strength and shape. So never ever skip a leg day, not even in your dreams.
3. Use of equipment
Use any of the gym types of equipment carefully and gently like you use your own stuff. We use them regularly and it is our responsibility to take care of them. Do not throw any dumbbell or plates into the floor, put them down gently and slowly. Do a type of workout in a zone where it should be done. For example Use deadlift equipment in the deadlift zone, do not use it in the cardio zone. Before stretching with any equipment just take a look at your surroundings just to make sure whether it is safe or not to do that and ignore any accidents. Use any equipment with the proper knowledge to use it properly or else it can get damaged by your actions. Clean them after using if it requires cleaning.
4. Seek permission
When someone using any of the things that you might need to do your exercise then just wait for a little bit till they finish it or just ask them for their permission to use it in between their sets. Do not just take it without asking them. It is very rude to act like this. It may cause obstacles for you and others to do exercises swiftly. If there is too much crowd then just do it one by one when your number comes. Do not touch other’s stuff without their knowledge. It is very simple. All you need to do is just ask before you take it.
5. Help other people
The first thing is minding your own business at the gym. The second thing is if anyone needs some kind of help then always try to help that person if you can. Helping each other at the gym can make the place super comfortable. Especially the new gym-goers would love to have some sort of help at the beginning from any experienced person who is gentle to them. It will help them to gain some confidence through it. Have an open-minded mentality towards other people and solve their problems at the gym with a little help.
6. Always bring your towel
Always bring your towel at the gym to use it to protect yourself from germs and other unhygienic things. The gym is the perfect place to catch any kind of viruses that may cause illness with cold and fever. Use the towel on the bench or on the floor before doing any exercise. You can use it on any equipment for your safety and have some kind of grip and protection that can help you to handle it properly. You can clean yourself or wipeout sweats during and after the gym session. A towel is a must thing to carry every single time you hit the gym for your own safety and for the safety of other people.
7. Keep your cell phone in the bag
The cell phone is the biggest distraction for us in any place or time. The gym is also not an exceptional place. You can find many men or women take too many selfies in the gym during and after their workout. It can distract you and other people and would make some problems. Limit yourself from taking frequent selfies and concentrate on your exercise. Do not talk on the phone or take any call until it is very important or urgent. The constant talk or ringing of a phone can hamper your concentration level and people can get annoyed with it. Spending too much time on a cell phone while at the gym is simply a waste of time and you will not be able to use the time properly on your fitness.
8. Do not hold any equipment for too long
Holding any equipment in your possession for too long without any reason is not good etiquette to practice. Use equipment to do your workout and just leave it for another person to use it. Do not hold it for doing unnecessary stuff like talking or checking your phone or just relaxing on it or taking too much time on a single set. In the rush hours, it is more important to take limited time on something so that every other person can use it for their workouts. Surely you would get frustrated to wait for any equipment for that very same reason. The same thing goes for another person. Just take the time you need to finish your workout on a station, not longer than that.
9. Avoid long discussion
A gym is a place where people share many common liking and interest. At times, it can be very interesting to talk or discuss something with someone or in a gathering at the gym. It can be fun to do but it is not good for the purpose of going to a gym. Talking kills an immense amount of time that we can use for our exercise. Do not talk or join in a gathering like this to keep your focus on your workout. Talk when you need to know or to tell something related to the gym or exercise. Try to limit your talking intentions and do not disturb a guy using headphones without any reason. We use headphones to keep our concentration at the gym.
10. Wear proper gym outfit
There are certain types of clothes to wear for different kind of reasons. We wear formal for office or any official purpose, we wear casuals in any informal event, we wear sportswear for sporting events etc. Wear the proper gym clothing that can give you an extra advantage of doing any workout. Use shorts or track pants with comfortable t-shirts. You can buy proper gym clothing that has the abilities of stretching and soaking sweats. Give your attention to footwear as well. Flip flops or formal shoes are not the right tools for a workout. Use shoes with a good gripping ability like sports shoes or tennis shoes. You can do some exercises with the barefoot but it will be better to use proper shoes to give your body a good posture while doing the workout.
11. Consumption of water
Whether you are training hard or doing some normal training, you will need water. We sweat a lot during a fitness session and our body gets dehydrated because of it. When you go to the gym, carry a bottle of clean and fresh water. Drink some before starting the workout. During the training drink, a limited amount of water just to get hydrated. Remember, do not consume a lot of water during the exercise because it can fill your stomach and you would feel it difficult to workout. After finishing and relaxing for some time you can drink it according to your need and requirement.
12. Give others some space
Every single person deserves some personal space at the gym to train peacefully. If you are waiting for someone to complete his/her set so that you can do it, then do not stand close to him/her. It feels very awkward if anybody stands so closely like this. Give the space they need and wait for your turn in a suitable distance. We all need some space to workout properly. Do not workout too closely with other people. It can increase the chances of injury for you and the guy standing next to you. Mark a safe and comfortable area that you will need to do the workout and maintain it.
13. Lift heavy with assistance
Lifting heavy is a whole different ball game from other exercises. It takes a lot of strength, stamina, body balance and proper posture to lift heavy with perfection. But accidents can happen at any time. So I would suggest taking some assistance while lifting heavy. When you are on your bad day of physical condition, you might not get the right strength to lift or hold it and you could lose your balance. If you have someone to look after you then the person can help you to adjust it or avoid any kind of accident. And it is must to have assistance when someone lifting heavy for the first time. Do not heavy lift when you are alone at the gym because no one will be there to help you if something wrong happens.
14. Ignore the random advice
We have a tendency of giving advice for free to other people. And we do this social work at the gym too. Even the person does not ask for it or require it. While doing your training ignore any kind of advice from random people. They do not have a single idea about you or why you are training or what is your purpose. Do not think of the advice or the person and keep doing your stuff. Only take advice from the person who is guiding you on your training or your personal trainer, if you have one. It would be better to ask any workout related question or quarry only to your trainer.
15. Stop comparing yourself with others
Keep it in mind that every person is different from the other person. We have different genes, different body type, strength, recovery process, nature etc. It will be the dumbest thing to compare you with other people. Do not try to imitate them at the gym with any of the exercises. Do not get upset if you cannot lift heavy or you gain muscle mass slowly compared to others. Everybody is covering the distance with different speed. Walk and concentrate on your own way to achieve the goal of having a good physic/figure. If you try to copy others then you will get even slower and it could affect you with some negative impact.
16. Be gentle
Proper fitness training helps us to be a gentle person. We should be gentle at the gym or anywhere else. We can see many people having many backgrounds workout at the gym. Always be kind and gentle to them or with each other to show some sort of mutual respect. If you do not like something then just ignore it and if you need or have to ask or tell something, speak gently. Never ever insult someone or show them any kind of bad attitude or behaviour. Do not make any personal joke on somebody who does not enjoy it. Ignore any argument or conflict.
17. Keep your belongings at one place
Usually, we carry a gym bag with us when we go to the gym. In this bag, we have some useful things that we will need for our training. If you do not need any of the things from your bag then keep it in your bag. And the things like a bottle of water, towel, headphone, resistance band etc you use while training, try to keep them in one place. This is a gym, not your bed room to use it at your will. Do not mess it up by keeping your belongings here and there. If you have a locker room in your gym then use it with good manners and keep it clean by placing your stuff in your locker.
18. Use some deodorant
It is very normal to sweat while doing some physical activity. People usually sweat a lot when they do intense training. If you sweat a lot more than other people or your body odour is too strong to tolerate then you can carry a deodorant or some sort of hygienic scented spray to use it at the gym. Our body odour sometimes can get too strong for the people surrounding us so it is safe to have a deodorant with us to use it when we have to. But do not use a lot of deodorants, use it a little bit to hide your body odour. And know it that the combination of the smell of your body odour and deodorant is not good at all.
19. Don’t stare at others
Please mind your own work. Do not stare at people no matter what the reason is. It is a very bad gesture, staring at people with or without a cause. It makes any person uncomfortable and it can break their concentration level. And for sure they will not appreciate or like it. You would get a bad impression on them and it might hamper your workout or create a sort of trouble for you that you might not like to have.
20. Follow a proper routine
Follow a scientific and effective workout routine to get maximum results for your fitness. A workout is a science, doing it randomly won’t help us. Do not repeat the same workout or same body part workout all week and know how to do an exercise accurately. Distribute your workout plan on every part of your body and train accordingly. Give time to your body to recover from a workout session and go for the next workout session after 24 hours from the previous one. Follow the routine at the gym and do not tamper it for any useless reason.
We all need the type of gym where we can expect this kind of behaviour and environment. Make your gym a better place by following the rules and making it a habit. Then you can have your dream gym that you will absolutely love and it can become a comfortable place for us to spend some time.