Hello everyone. Today’s guest post comes from Leslie Johnson, who writes about health, green living and parenting related articles at MastersInHealthCare.com.
It’s the summer and those that didn’t get a head start on their sculpted bodies in the spring will start to do so now—or will at least attempt to dive into a new workout regime in the fall. But just because the gym/fitness club is a place where it’s OK to sweat, stink, and grunt and or wear skimpy workout clothing doesn’t mean that there aren’t certain rules that you must follow. With that said, to learn the top 4 gym etiquette rules continue reading below.
Rule #1: You Must Share Equipment
Yes you may pay a hefty gym membership fee, but that doesn’t give you ownership of the equipment. Treadmills, standard bicycles and other weight equipment is communal property and should be treated as such. This means you can’t safeguard a machine and just sit there while you take full 10 minute rests between each set; it’s especially rude to just sit there while chatting on your cell phone, checking Facebook or leisurely reading a magazine. Instead, get up and let someone else work-in a set while you rest for a bit. You can go get a drink of water at the fountain or simply work a different part of your body and then return to the original machine.
This same idea should be used when dealing with dumbbells. After you’re done with a set, lay them on the floor so that others know it’s OK to use them while you rest. With treadmills and standard bicycles, typically it is found inconsiderate to use the equipment for more than 20 minutes at a time, especially if the number of cardio machines is extremely limited. Note that the only acceptable time you shouldn’t use this “switch-off” rule is when using a bench press loaded with weights. This is because if you stack the barbell with a mere 50 pounds and the person after you loads it with 200 pounds, it would become quite tedious (and potentially hazardous) if you have to continue to take off weights that you can barely lift every few minutes. But do be cautious of how much time you spend on the bench press.
Rule #2: Wipe Down Equipment
You don’t want to touch and sit on sweaty equipment and neither does anyone else. So be courteous and wipe down your area using your own towel or the ones provided by the fitness club. It’s important to note that sitting in someone else’s sweat isn’t just a comfort issue—it’s a big health issue as well. Sweaty areas are the perfect place for germs to fester that can weaken your immune system and cause you to get sick with the common cold or even contract a staph infection. And while you may be courteous enough to wipe down the equipment after each use, don’t be naïve in thinking everyone does the same (even though they should). So wipe down the equipment even before you use it.
Rule #3: Put the Equipment Back
This may seem like a no-brainer but all too often health club professionals, trainers, and gym members complain about not being able to locate missing equipment or injure themselves because heavy dumbbells are just left lying in the middle of the floor. Be courteous and place everything back where you found it—this includes yoga mats, balancing balls, and even the weights that are stacked on your barbell.
Rule #4: Don’t Be a Gossip Queen/King
Lastly, while it’s perfectly OK to chat with a friend and socialize in the gym (especially if you have a work out buddy) it’s important that you don’t overdo it with the chatter—people are there to work on their fitness and having long in depth conversations with someone is a huge distraction to the people around you. Save it for after-work out time.
This guest post is contributed by Leslie Johnson, who writes about health, green living and parenting related articles at MastersInHealthCare.com.