Gym Etiquette: Part 1 (Keeping a Positive Gym Environment)

Gym etiquette is important. It once was reasonably simple, but now with all the new technology we must re-establish rules. With wireless headphones, heart rate monitors, cell phones which give constant contact and internet access, TV’s, and more there are many forms of distraction at the gym than just about anywhere else. These rules evolve every couple of years but the general rules remain constant. Learn these rules and everyone will have a safe and enjoyable time at the gym.

  1. Talking on the phone – If you need to take a call step outside for a minute, people don’t want to hear your business call or personal call while they are sweating it out!
  2. Texting full-blown conversations – If your changing your music or in between sets its fine to answer a yes or no questions, but don’t spend your entire workout texting.
  3. Flexing repeatedly in front of the mirror – It’s fine to check yourself out in the mirror, but keep it to a minimum.
  4. Not wiping down equipment after use – This applies during flu season especially, but all year-long. Bonus, if you want to make sure your machine is clean, wipe it down before and after you use it.
  5. Standing directly in front of the dumbbell rack to do an exercise – When someone does lateral raises or curls directly in front of the dumbbell rack, it eliminates the possibility for others to get to four or five pairs of dumbbells which they may want to use.
  6. Using multiple pieces of equipment during busy times – Super sets are great, but be smart about it. Do a chest press followed by band curls or dumbbell curls. Don’t try to use the pec deck, lateral raise, and chest press machines all at the same time when the gym is full.
  7. Not letting someone work in when they want to use the equipment you are on – Listen I understand, it is sometimes annoying when someone wants to work in, but remember they pay for a gym membership just like you! Bonus, you might make a friend.
  8. Having your music so loud that you can’t hear someone ask if they can work in – Don’t be so anti-social that someone can’t ask you for a spot, or if they can work in on a set.
  9. Not showering or at least applying deodorant before the gym and smelling the place up – If this has ever happened to you, I bet you understand. Someone who just finished a cigarette or has the worst body odor ever jumps on the treadmill next to you and makes you want to throw up. Don’t be this person.
  10. Grunting – Its ok a breath loudly or make a small grunt if you are lifting heavy, but don’t make a habit of it. It is distracting to others.

As always if you have any questions about this article please feel free to email me at or connect on social media! Check back next monday for part 2 of gym etiquette!

Committed to your health!
~Michael Hartman
Formal Fitness Training CEO

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