Gyms can be intimidating places, especially if you’re not familiar with all the dos and don’ts of the various bits of equipment. Want to know the gym etiquette behind tidying up after yourself, or whether you should wipe down the treadmill you’ve been using, or how long you should spend on the rowing machine? Then keep reading to discover our 7 top gym etiquette tips.
1. Clean up After Yourself!
This may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised. Bring a towel with you and wipe the sweat off any bench or machine you use. If you forget to bring a towel, use your sweatshirt or the paper towels provided by the club. We also provide anti-bacterial spray that we encourage you to use to wipe down your equipment. We do our best to keep our gyms as clean as possible, but we need your help too in order to help keep yourself and your fellow gym-goers healthy!
2. Sharing Equipment
In terms of gym etiquette, the equipment is considered communal property. Therefore, please be considerate of others during busy periods and share kit between yourselves. This is especially true when it comes to the benches. Also, if you’re using the free weights, try not to hog four sets of dumbbells in one go, place them back on the rack if they are not being used immediately.
3. Bar Safety
If you are using an Olympic bar, please make sure you load each side equally and use the collars/clips to secure if training alone. Preferably, however, you should use a spotter or a safety rack.
4. Don’t Spend too Long on a Certain Piece of Equipment
Especially during busy periods, it’s really bad gym etiquette to hog a certain piece of equipment. At these times, try and limit your time at each station to about 20 minutes. This will mean you get a decent workout but without holding your fellow gym users up.
5. Unloading your Weight bar
After you finish using a bar, leave it completely empty. This is a key part of good gym etiquette. Removing weight plates from a bar takes a fair amount of strength as well as good technique and the person following you may not have the strength to unload your heavy weights.
- Putting weights back where you found them
- Plates and dumbbells: When you’ve removed a weight plate from a bar or when you finish using a pair of dumbbells, return the weights to their designated spot on the rack.
- Never leave dumbbells or barbells on the floor when you’re finished using them. Someone my trip on the weights.
- If you leave dumbbells on the floor between sets, criss-cross them or put them up against the wall or bench so they don’t roll away.
6. Respect Others’ Personal Space
If the specific bit of kit you’re wanting to use is currently occupied, then be patient and go do something else. Don’t loom over the person using that equipment trying to force them off. Not only is it disrespectful and poor gym etiquette, but it could be dangerous, too; putting them off their form, or even knocking them physically off balance. So keep your distance!
7. Keep the Selfies on the Down-Low
We know loads of you enjoy taking them and they even can be good barometers of your progress, but it’s important you’re careful. Not everyone wants to be in your picture, so good gym etiquette requires that you remain discreet.