Fitness Faux Pas: 12 No No's At the Gym
- The Goods
- Published on Thursday, 24 October 2013 08:33
With the kids back in school, perhaps you have two, maybe even three whole hours for some quality me-time. What's the first thing on your wish list? Workouts at the gym! But when you're there, remember it's not all about you. Everyone at the gym is there to get fit and enjoy a workout. So avoid these fitness faux pas to ensure that you don't embarrass yourself and annoy others.
1. Leave sick kids at home: Dylan's nose is oozing and he had a fever at 8:00 AM- that's why you didn't send him to school. So why is he in childcare at the gym? We all know whose kid that is and if we don't, we ask. Always have a home workout ready as backup and stay home. What small child wants to be at a gym childcare when they're sick anyway?
2. Arrive on time: Try to be on time for classes, especially if you need to lug a lot of equipment in with you and if the class is very full. If you easily find a spot, great. If you need to worm your way through and it will disturb others, activate gym etiquette. We all run late and it stinks to miss that one class you live for every week, but know where to draw the line and sit one out.
3. First come, first served: Never ever think you own a spot on the floor in a gym class. You don't. Moving someone else's equipment without asking them first, even if it's poorly placed, is just bad karma.
4. Don't bare it: Those Lululemon pants are transparent. It was in the New York Times, Reuters, Business Week, Time, The Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, People, on CNN and NPR, and trending on Twitter. You couldn't have missed it. But, if you did, someone reading this article will remember proper gym etiquette and remind you that you have on the recalled Lululemons. Please exchange at your nearest retailer. Now.
5. Respect personal space: Accidentally hitting the person next to you when you're doing jumping jacks hurts. Being back-lunged into never feels good. You should never feel like you need to wear a helmet and shin guards to a fitness class. Try your best to leave an arm's length or two between you and the person next to you and try to be aware of your surrounding gym-mates. (See #5 if you do make contact.)
6. Say excuse me: This should be a given, but apparently it is not. If you bump into someone, (or if you are thrown into someone when someone bumps into you,) say "I'm sorry" or "excuse me," with a smile on your face. Similarly, if you need to reach past someone for equipment, wait your turn or say, "excuse me;" it makes everyone's gym experience better.
7. Talk outside: Save the cell phone conversations for outside the gym. Enough said.
8. Don't tie up the machines: An oldie but goodie is don't rest on a machine or bench in between sets; and definitely don't superset. Avoiding eye contact with the guy you know is waiting is obvious to all, so just let him know that you're buff enough for another set and give him a turn.
9. Clean up after yourself: The eight-pound dumbbells are always missing from the rack. Remember what you're always trying to teach your children...please put things back when you're doing using them.
10. Wipe it down: If the equipment you just used is very shiny in certain areas, it is probably your sweat. Please take the time to wipe it down before the next person uses it. Thanks.
11. Exit gracefully: If you need to leave a class early, politely inform the instructor of this before the class begins. They work hard to design classes for you and may take it personally.
12. Don't strut your stuff: Do you really need to blow dry your hair for 20 minutes naked? Or in a thong? Congratulations on your new breasts, they turned out lovely (and who's your surgeon?), but the most amount of time they should be out in a public locker room is the time it takes to change. You may think you look awesome in a thong, but you jiggle when you blow-dry your hair. Oh, and men, skip blow-drying the privates in public.
The author wishes to thank Webb Travis for providing feedback and suggestions for this article. Webb is an experienced personal trainer and top-notch fitness instructor at Equinox in Scarsdale, and he never uses blow-dryers inappropriately in public locker rooms