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Approaching a new gym can be intimidating, especially if you’re new to the gym scene. However, if you have a basic knowledge of gym etiquette, you can feel more comfortable about getting started and becoming a good gym citizen.
First, it’s important to think about the gym and its equipment as your rented space. Everyone within the gym is sharing both the space and equipment, so it’s important to refrain from viewing a machine as “yours” or spending an inordinate amount of time with one machine. Be cognizant of others who may want a turn using the weights or machine you are using. Consider moving through various machines to free them up for others.
Another important concept is allowing others their space. This includes not staring at others who are working out. Recognize that there is a difference between surveying the landscape and getting a good feel for who is in the gym and simply staring at others. This can make everyone uncomfortable. Focus on what you are doing. Try not to select a machine that is immediately next to another person when there are others available that provide more of a buffer.
Ensure that you are wearing proper gym attire. If you’re going to a new gym, check in advance with gym staff if they have any restrictions on attire. If you need a spot, feel free to ask someone nearby and similarly, help someone out if they need assistance. When you’re done using a machine, you must wipe it down. During cold and flu season, you may want to wipe the machine before and after use. In fact, if you are sick, you should avoid the gym entirely. Prior to using the machine, check it quickly and make sure there are no issues. This will help to avoid injury and assist gym staff. When using free weights, try not to drop them and always rerack the weights when you’re finished.
Be a good gym citizen and follow these tips. This will help to make the gym a more fun, safe place for everyone.