Knowing what is considered polite behavior in a gym environment can be confusing. If you are a seasoned gym enthusiast, then you likely already know most of these unspoken rules. But if you are new to the gym, it is helpful to know these basic rules of etiquette. You can avoid much embarrassment by comprehending these do’s and don’ts in the gym.
Warm Up: Warm up are like a prelude to exercise and it should be done before doing any form of work-out. Gentle movements, stretching, walking, a little jog will loosen and prepare the muscles for a rigorous gym session.
Check Vitals: Many gym regulars do not pay attention to their vital parameters before starting their daily fitnessregime. Doctors recommend checking vital parameters like blood pressure, pulse rate and resting heart rate to ensure a smooth workout regime. Slow down your exercise if these vital parameters are not within the normal range.
Eat First: Exercises are a strict no-no on an empty stomach. Good, well planned diet helps in building muscle and in reducing the fat content. Munch on fruits like bananas, apples or oatmeal at least 30 minutes before hitting the gym to boost energy and fuel muscles for longer hours.
DO Carry a Towel: Sure. Slip-and-Slides were fun as a kid, but slipping and sliding on someone else’s sweat is just plain disgusting. Carry a towel and wipe down each piece of equipment after you use it to be respectful of others and eliminate the gross factor immensely.
Sweat: Sweating at the gym is a good thing. It means you are getting a good workout. But you must consider how your sweat affects those around you. It is polite to keep a rag handy to wipe the sweat off of your body. Do not shake like a wet dog and fling your bodily fluids onto those around you. After using equipment, wipe it clean. Be diligent and aware of your sweat. Keep it to yourself.
Equipment: When the gym is crowded, it is polite to swap with other members rather than occupying one machine for long. You will appreciate this gesture when you are the one waiting for a machine to become available. Same goes to the small equipment like dumbbells, fitballs, etc. Also, it is very rude not to place the equipment you’ve been using back where it belongs. Thus, once you are done with your exercise, make sure you rerack your weight.
Comfortable Clothes: Wear trendy, comfortable and loose-fitting clothing to feel confident while exercising. Tight garments may restrict the flow of blood supply to muscles and restrict movements.
Set A Routine: Follow a routine while working out at the gym. Start with simple, easy and moderate exercises before going for strength training and cardio. Taking up heavy workouts from the very beginning may cause injuries.
Avoid Dehydration: Dehydration can cause major health issues. It is very crucial to stay hydrated while working out and ensure to replenish your body with fluids. Your body would need at least 250 ml of water for every 20 minutes if you are exercising rigorously in a gym.
DON’T Be a Loud Talker: Remember that Seinfeld episode? Nobody likes a loud talker. Respect those around you by refraining from holding loud conversations in public areas. This means no cell-phones, too. Whatever you have to say, can wait. If you have enough energy to carry on in a loud manner, you’re probably not working out hard enough, anyway.
Don’t Lose Focus: It is very easy to lose focus and interest in following exercise regimen, unless you are very determined. Keep the boredom away by taking up new exercises that will help you focus on overall fitness.
DON’T Ignore Time Limits: Most gyms ask that you limit time on cardio machines to 30 minutes during peak hours. Respect these time limits so that others can get the most out of their gym time, too. Plus, incorporating a variety of different activities into your fitness routine gives you a greater full-body workout.
DON’T Forget to Wash Your Hands: Like it or not, quite a lot of bodily fluids call the gym home. Chances are, your gym has more germs lurking around on the floor and equipment than it has in its bathroom. While you can’t completely avoid them, keep yourself healthy by washing your hands regularly, and for goodness sake, keep your hands away from your face!
Involve Your Trainer: Don’t neglect the suggestions given by your trainer. Discuss your goals and device a workout plan. Stick to it and don’t change it without the prior permission from your trainer.
Don’t Push Injury: If you are suffering from an injury, sprain or body pain, it’s okay to take a break! Do not try to push yourself if you are unwell as it may lead to bigger health problems.
Don’t Strain: Don’t go overboard with workouts and training. Understand your limitations and discuss it with your trainers. Body needs to rest and recover after heavy muscle workouts. After a weight training session, give a 24-hour gap and take up some cycling or swimming.
Odorous Products: The gym is not always the best smelling place. But it is rude to overwhelm those around you with your cologne, perfume, or other noxious products. If you want to wear a nice smelling cologne, put it on as soon as you leave the gym. Just because you love your perfume, does not mean others will appreciate it, especially in large doses. Obviously, we are not going to tell you that it’s really crucial totake care of your personal hygiene both before and after the gym because you already know it;)
Everyone who regularly visits a gym has stories about the rude or obnoxious gym member. Don’t be that guy or gal. The gym is a fun and exciting place to be if everyone is respectful.