Whether you’re new to working out or you’re a veteran, there’s no doubt about the fact that there is etiquette that should be observed in the gym. Everyone is there trying to better themselves, and at the same time, the gym and its patrons should be treated with consideration and respect.
Here are 5 tips to make sure you don’t end up stepping on anyone’s toes next time you hit the gym.
Clean up after yourself
The number one pet peeve of gym goers is when others don’t clean up after themselves. If you’re going to the gym, chances are you’re going to sweat. It’s good manners – and quite frankly, hygienic – to spray and wipe down equipment after you have used it. It’s also paramount that you bring a sweat towel to use whilst you exercise to minimize the mess you make.
Be upfront, yet kind
If someone is camping out on a machine, ask them quietly and kindly if you may use it while they are resting. If people are using the machine you want and there seems to be no line of order, kindly suggest if you can go next to invoke some sort of order. It is possible to be upfront and honest whilst maintaining manners and kindness.
Don’t camp on gym equipment
It’s absolutely acceptable to take a few minutes rest in between sets. However, it is good manners to hop off the machine, weights or gym equipment you are using during this time. It is common courtesy, and it means someone else can get a set in while you are waiting. Treat the equipment how you’d want others to treat it! Taking turns can even be helpful as it may keep you moving.
Put things back where they belong
Just like we were taught in kindergarten, once you’ve used a toy, it’s important to put it back where it belongs. The same goes for weights and other portable gym equipment such as yoga mats and the like. Treat the gym as you would your home, and don’t make unnecessary messes. Most gyms will have a sign posted near the free weights asking that you put things back in their proper place, so take heed of this advice.
If you’re about to take a gym class, ensure you tell the instructor if you’re new, have an injury or know that there are some exercises that you shouldn’t do. This also goes for your personal workouts. Always be sure to work out within your limits, and don’t push yourself to the point of severe pain or injury. Safety also extends to wearing the appropriate footwear and clothing – for two reasons: so as not to hurt yourself or hurt others by distracting them!
Don’t be that guy or girl next time you workout. Ensure your experience and the experience of others in the gym is the best it can possibly be. Be clean, safe, considerate and efficient and you’ll be well on your way to a fun and effective fitness journey.