It’s been a while since I’ve written a blog for the site (I write daily informative emails that you can subscribe to below) and after an interesting conversation with a client the other evening regarding gym etiquette, I thought yeah….people will want to know about this.


The unwritten gym etiquette 101.


Sure, some of these are common sense but others…well they’re just ‘gymy’ and once said out loud last night to the client, they just seemed odd. Aha!


So here we go, let’s dive in to number one.


Using a machine that’s occupied


Your first approach here is always “how many sets have you got left?” This will highlight to the person that’s currently using the machine that you are now interested in using the same piece of equipment. You’re simply saying to the person hurry up I want that.


Now this will go one of two ways, said person will ask if you want to ‘work in’ on the machine which is simply saying hey let’s share. They do a set; you do a set. Or they’ll say I’ve just started. Which is basically saying clear off and don’t come back. Please refrain from punching these people 😉


Providing that the machine in use is easy to alter the weight/settings most people will allow you to work in with them – hurrah!


Mirror usage

We all know there are those guys (and girls) who love the mirrors in the gym. Let’s keep everyone happy and not stand in front of those people using the mirror. They aren’t just for admiring one’s self, they’re also handy for checking out your lifting technique/form.


If someone’s doing a set and you need a set of dumbbells that’s right in front of them, be the decent person that you are and wait for them to finish their set.



Putting your equipment back

 Yep, that’s on you and only you. The gym team are not your slaves and nor are the other gym goers. Dumbbells go back in the correct order. 3kg dumbbells have no place next to the 22kg dumbbells, don’t be lazy!


When using machines that use weight plates, take them off when you’re finished that’s on you too. The same rule applies – 5’s go with 5’s, 10’s with 10‘s etc. Treat it like you would your home.

Side note: Placing dumbbells the right way round with the logo’s in the same position is optional 😉



Asking for a spot

 A spot is often required in the gym, sometimes for safety reasons sometimes to help you get that extra rep done. If you need spot with any of your exercises, the first choice should be to ask a member of the gym team. If none are available, ask a fellow gym member with the standard “can I get a spot please”. Make sure you ask this when someone is resting and not mid set 😉



Cleaning up your sweat.

 This is simple, you sweat on it. You clean it. If you can’t find cleaning stuff – just ask a member of staff! They will provide it.



FAO the ‘lads’

Don’t be a perv. It’s hard enough for the ladies to go into the weights area as it is, make them feel comfortable to go in and kick some ass in the weights room alongside of you without them feeling like they are being prayed upon. Let’s not be be to sexist here, the same rule applies to you too ladies… 😜



Filling up your water bottle

 Most water coolers/fountains are pretty slow, no need to fill your 2 litre bottle up in one go whilst you have a queue of people waiting. Step aside for a second and come back later to fill it. The other gym goers will thank you.



Protein shaker bottles

 If you have an old shaker bottle that you haven’t washed for a couple of days because you left it in your bag by mistake, do everyone (including yourself) a favour and do not open it at the gym. The smell will likely cause everyone to pass out.

Mobile phones

Mobiles are great tools for the gym, selfies, getting peoples numbers…I jest! Seriously though, they are a good tool for recording your workouts on, filming your form and of course listening to your own music instead of the garbage most gyms play aha. What they aren’t good for is sitting on a piece of equipment whilst you’re scrolling through social media hogging the equipment you are using. The gym’s are busy enough without you being a douchebag and hogging the kit for too long because you need to see what Dave had for lunch that day.


So there you have it, you are now a professional gym attendee and if you want to know a little more about weight training, go and check out a previous blog that I wrote about weight training for beginners right here > Beginners guide to weight training



Richard Gunter

Impact Personal Training Owner