The Beginner’s Guide to Gym Etiquette

When you first join a gym, an employee at that fitness center should introduce you to the way everything works – the equipment and the rules of behavior. They should also offer their help if you have any doubt about using a certain piece of equipment or what a certain machine does for your body, in order to help you achieve what you came for to the gym at the first place. However, it is more and more often the case that gym employees just do the formalities; show you where the locker room is, and let you handle the mystery of how stuff works on your own. Lucky for us, there is enough information on the internet, so we are not completely helpless.

There are not many etiquette rules for exercising at the gym. Most of those rules shouldn’t even have to be mentioned as they should come naturally to you if you have common sense. But, there are some specific rules of behavior that you need to have in mind when going to the gym. If you are a beginner, reading them will be useful for you. They are easy to follow, and they will certainly make your working out at the gym more comfortable and you will be more confident.

1. Safety and Appropriate Use of Equipment

Make sure you are safely using the equipment. If you are not familiar with a piece of equipment or aren’t sure how to use it properly, don’t hesitate to ask someone from the gym staff to inform you and show you how to use that machine. They will gladly help you and this is much better than you trying to figure it out on your own and then getting injured because you did something wrong. Don’t be embarrassed to ask for help, you are not the only beginner in your gym, and after all, everyone had to start somewhere and had the same issues as you do.

Don’t take the space that is not intended for the exercise you are doing. We know that looking at yourself in the mirror is tempting and that you think that this way you will do the exercise better, but don’t take up the space someone else needs just so you could look at yourself, if there is a place elsewhere for the exercise you are doing. For example, occupying a squatting space to do bicep curls is a big no-no if the gym is crowded. If you are alone at the gym, then go ahead.

Don’t be embarrassed to ask for help. If you are pushing your limits when it comes to lifting, always ask for a spot, because otherwise you won’t be entirely safe. What if you lose your strength and the weights fall onto you? Safety is the most important thing when exercising at the gym. If you don’t feel comfortable asking other gym members to spot for you, ask someone from the gym staff. After all, it is their job to help.

Secure the weight. Don’t EVER lift heavy (or anything at all at the gym) without the clips securing the weights from falling off the bar. If you lose balance, even for a second, the weight bars could go crashing down around you, making a lot of noise and potentially hurting you and/or someone else. This is why you always need to put the clips on the bar after putting the weight plates on it. This is important for yours, and the safety of other gym members.

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