Some cities are still under lockdown, meaning that most gyms are unfortunately still closed. While everyone is slowly shifting into the mindset of home workouts, this is the perfect opportunity to think about those nasty gym habits that exist. Some of them you’re probably guilt of, while others are serious pet peeves. For instance, there is an unspoken rule somewhere to give as much distance and privacy as possible. So if the gym is almost empty, there’s no reason to hop on the equipment right next to someone who has already been using it or worse, hang around them until they finish their set.
People go to gyms for different reasons. Whatever those may be, it is clear that no one wants to be in a gym where annoying behaviors detract from the full experience. Let’s try to use this lockdown to sanitize and exercise our gym manners. Read through this list and find the nasty gym habits that you just might be guilty of.
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We get it. It is hard to be without your phone completely. You want to have keepsakes of your fitness progress for yourself or social media followers, or you need to keep your finger on the pulse of events. But you do not have to overdo it. Studies show that spending more time on your phone in between reps may decrease the intensity of your workout. This means that you’re burning less energy and not working out as effectively as you should be. And this is only one of the downsides of this nasty habit.
There is a high chance that the gym is already noisy with the sounds of equipment and machines. No one needs the additional distraction of you screaming through your phone to be heard. If you must take a call, do so in a private or quiet area where you will not disturb others.
There is nothing more disgusting than using gym equipment after someone and finding out they left their sweat and germs behind. Sweat carries a wide range of germs and bacteria that can cause illnesses. Research shows that free weights can carry 362 times more bacteria than the seat of a public toilet. You can get infections from coming in contact with tainted gym surfaces and equipment. Cleaning up after yourself might not seem like a huge deal to you, but it means a lot to the person that uses that equipment after you.
This also falls within the category of cleaning up after yourself. If you use something, return it to where you picked it from. It is annoying when you have to re-rack someone else’s weight, especially as you may have trouble lifting them. If you are one of those who do this, whether deliberate or not, stop before you cause an accident.
Do not encroach on other people’s personal space. If the gym is not full or if there is more than enough equipment, do not use the space right next to an occupied one. If you are waiting for your turn to use a piece of equipment, don’t hover over the person using it. Don’t take up more space than is necessary for the gym lockers. Also, do not create an obstacle for others by exercising in shared spaces.
You may have mastered all the proper exercise forms and become a self-acclaimed guru. However, unless specifically asked, don’t interrupt someone else’s workout to give them advice on their form or choice of protein powders. It is distracting, not to talk of embarrassment, and no one likes that. For a lot of people, going to the gym is already uncomfortable, don’t be the reason it becomes unpleasant.