Fresh starts often bring a surge of energy and determination to achieve our fitness goals. However, this enthusiasm can sometimes lead to unintentional mistakes that make others uncomfortable and put you in an awkward position among your fellow gym-goers. When embarking on a new fitness journey, it's natural to be enthusiastic. However, it's important to keep in mind that while the gym is a place for personal development, it's also a public area subject to societal norms and etiquette. Whether you're a newcomer or a regular gym enthusiast, there are valuable lessons to be learned. It's always beneficial to revisit proper gym etiquette to ensure a positive and harmonious environment for everyone. With the aim of improving the gym experience for all, here are some etiquette tips to consider as you return to your fitness routine:
Re-racking is a good habit
Well, we understand the undying enthusiasm to pick up heavily weighted dumbbells, roads, weighted plates, and other types of equipment. The heavier it is, the stronger the spirit is to lift it. But putting them back in their places is also good etiquette and should be a part of the workout routine. It demonstrates a responsible factor in you that ensures that others also find them feasible, easy, and convenient for them. And if you use any gym equipment and leave it anywhere but in its usual place, this can lead to time wastage for others who are going to use it after you. So think about other people as much as you think about yourself.
Make space for others
In a crowded gym, it is quite essential for everyone to be empathic and supportive. When you are using any gym table, squat rack, machine, or bench, it is quite important to be cooperative with others by sharing the same machine one by one. You must not occupy a machine for a long duration just to relax, click selfies, or make poses. You can do this later on, but always be considerate of the person who is waiting in the queue. It creates a positive impression of yours in the minds of others.
Keep hygiene levels high
Sweating is quite common during the workout, especially during the summer and humid seasons when the water excretion is higher than usual. No one needs to be embarrassed about their sweating but rather should be careful about dropping sweat on machines, benches, and rods after using them. Always clean the machine, such as a cycle, treadmill, or any equipment such as rods and benches, after using it. You can also use a milder deodorant to keep body odor at bay. It leaves an important hygienic impression, and nobody will run away from sharing space in the gym or shaking hands.
Be quiet and calm
Music has the magic of making everything around us feel great and easy to handle. Many of us have the tendency to put on our favorite tune and vibe to it while in the gym. Many of us even have special tracks made for workouts, and why not?
Music can help you feel happy and motivated to push yourself harder. But it doesn’t give you the right to sing your favorite melody in a louder tone, especially when you don’t have professional singing training. Wearing supreme-quality earphones can make you not hear your own voice, but don’t forget that everyone in the gym doesn’t have the same habit of carrying headphones. Always respect the choices of others who like to be quiet and calm, and understand that the gym is a public place and should be made approachable for all.
Don’t be extensively hyper
There are times when, while doing an extremely difficult or heavy routine, one ends up getting high on all the hormones and starts screaming or sharing loudly their enthusiasm and zeal towards exercising.
Many times the same zeal and enthusiasm can be seen negatively because of loud screaming or extensively hyperactive activities. Throwing dumbbells, punching hard on walls, and shouting at the top of your lungs can often disturb the environment of the gym, holding you accountable for the same. Keep your passion under check, as there is a very thin line between being active and hyper. P.S. Punching walls or harming any product of the gym will lead to controversy with your gym and even result in consequences.
Know your surroundings
If you want to be everyone’s favorite man and be appreciated by others, then be considerate of others. During a hectic day, always check if somebody is already standing behind you and if it’s a passage area that is going to be used often before you start hitting the kick or throwing the dumbbells, as it can lead to an injury to your gym mates. If you spot somebody new or not as knowledgeable in the field of the gym as you are, then ask if they want to help lift weights, educate them about the right equipment, or just pass them a gentle smile to make them comfortable. However, if it’s a female counterpart, then be mindful before offering help, and don’t stare at them constantly, as it can be disturbing and offensive.
Bring a towel and a water bottle
It is natural to get sweaty and thirsty in the gym, especially during the summer or monsoon, which can lead to an extra excretion of water from the body. It is always suggested that you bring your own handy towel instead of dripping sweat on the floor or pulling a T-shirt up to wipe it. If you are the one who feels thirsty quite a lot and likes to keep yourself hydrated throughout the routine, then it is better to bring your own bottle of water to carry with you, besides creating a queue near the water tank. It also wastes your gym time if you have to go drink water again and again.
A gym is a place to work out, not a selfie zone. Young people are often seen capturing themselves with selfies just to update social media or to check if they can spot a change in their build. Well, keeping a check is a good practice, but there are different and valid ways to do that. But keeping others waiting in the circuit area or changing area just to get that one shot is not a gentleman’s thing. Let people from within and outside the gym compliment you on your new avatar, and let them ask for a photograph with you.
Finally, to sum up, identify those mistakes that you tend to make, knowingly or unknowingly, and rectify them, as making mistakes is not a bad thing, but not working on them is definitely a wrong practice.
Written by: Bhawana Anand
Edited by: Aniket Joshi