Thursday, January 19, 2012

Gym Etiquette

Last night I made my way to the gym for my evening cardio.  It was great to see the gym so full of energy.  I saw some old faces and many new faces, happily getting through their workouts.  And then there were the others, those who were acting like the gym was there own personal facility. So for those of you who are new to our world and for those of you who made need a refresher; here are a few tips to help you navigate the jungle that is the gym during the new year.

Use a towel Towels at my facility are free to checkout. If you sweat like I do, you need a towel. Your sweat and the accumulated sweat of others can cause damage to the equipment. It is also really gross to workout in someone elses sweat. No one wants to sit in your puddle.  If you don’t think you sweat, well at least think of your towel as a barrier between you and the sweat left behind by someone else.

Be Aware of Your Surroundings If you do not have space to extend your arms out to the side, in front of you or behind you do not have room to perform your burpees, lunges, or other spacious exercise.  Do not block door ways, water fountains, walkways, or the dumbbell rack.  You could hurt yourself, a fellow patron, or me, and you don't want to hurt me :-)

Wipe it down – Wipe down everything you use, before and after use.  The gym is crowded and busy. More than likely the last hand that touched that dumbbell did not clean it…or the 20 hands before that.  Protect yourself from the wrath of gym germs, wipe it down!

Ask for help – If you are confused about how to use a piece of equipment pleeeease ask the attendant on duty. It is their job and their pleasure to assist you.  Asking for help it will decrease your workout time and keep you from hurting yourself or damaging the equipment. I had to ask how to adjust the squat rack the other day, it was better than wasting my workout time trying to figure it out.

Share - Yes the gym and its equipment are 1st come 1st serve, but this is the busy time of the year.  An efficient patron can get through there set in about 5 minutes.  But, most of us need a 30 to 60 second rest between sets.  If you see someone waiting to use your equipment. If you would like to use a piece of equipment someon else is using, ask them "to work in".  Do not interrup someones set to them anything though, it takes a lot of focus to workout effectively, but once I have released the weight it is ok to interact. 

Re-Rack - Re rack the weights.  I don't care if it is 5 lbs or 45 lbs.  If I had a killer bicep day and now I am doing legs, I do not want to have to remove any of your plates from the machine before I get on it. Weight plates belong on the racks, not on the floor or the wall.  Benches belong in corners and in the free weight area not in the middle of the floor, where I will trip, and hit my shin, and contemplate hulking out and throwing it across the room.  That bar came from a bench or a wrack, please put it back, I came to the gym for cardio and strength, not an obstacle course,  but thanks for the added agility portion of my workout, it did make me feel like batgirl.

If we can all keep these things in mind during the new year rush I think we can all survive until February.  If not, the gym will implode, disease will run rampant, and we will decide who gets what equipment gladiator style.

But seriously, play nice, being polite goes a long way, we are all trying to achieve the same goals, lets not destroy each other in the process.

Health and Happiness


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