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  • Writer's pictureLisa Hampton

Mastering Gym Etiquette: A Guide to Respectful Workout Culture

Gyms can be an intimidating experience for many, especially newcomers. However, beyond mastering the machines and perfecting your form, understanding, and adhering to gym etiquette is crucial for creating a positive and respectful environment for all. Whether you are a seasoned gym regular or just starting out on your fitness journey, following six basic rules will ensure that everyone can enjoy their workout experience to the fullest.

1. Respect Personal Space

One of the fundamental aspects of gym etiquette is respecting the personal space of others. Avoid crowding or hovering over someone while they are using equipment. If you need to use a machine that someone is currently using, you can wait patiently at a reasonable distance until they finish or politely approach them and ask how many more sets they have left. Conversely, be mindful not to hog equipment for an extended period. Sharing is caring in the gym.


2. Cleanliness Is Key

Sweating is inevitable during a workout, but that does not mean leaving a mess behind is acceptable. Always wipe down equipment after use, this includes the handles on machines, dumbbells, and barbells. If you notice any sweat puddles on benches or machines, take a moment to clean them up. At Life Adapted we provide sweat towels, disinfectant, and equipment towels, please pick those up at the entrance. Additionally, remember to re-rack your weights after use. Leaving weights and other equipment scattered around the gym floor is not only disrespectful to others but also poses a safety hazard.


3. Keep Noise Levels in Check

While it is natural to grunt or exhale loudly during a particularly challenging set, excessive noise can be disruptive to others. Be mindful of your volume, especially when dropping weights or engaging in conversation with fellow gym-goers. If you are wearing earbuds, you may not be aware that you are whistling or singing along aloud, those habits are also very annoying for other gym members. Remember that everyone is there to focus on their workout, so try to maintain a respectful noise level throughout your session. 


4. Practice Good Hygiene

Nothing ruins a workout experience faster than encountering someone with poor hygiene. Always shower before heading to the gym and make sure to wear clean workout attire. Additionally, wear deodorant and be mindful to keep perfumes and body sprays to a minimum can help prevent unpleasant and overwhelming odors from lingering in the air. Keep your gym shoes clean, so you do not track dirt, grass, or other debris onto the gym floor. 


5. Be Mindful of Others' Time

Just as you appreciate having access to equipment when you need it, so do others. Avoid spending excessive time on a single machine or bench, especially during peak hours. If you are resting between sets, allow others to work in with you if the gym is busy. This not only promotes efficiency but also fosters a sense of camaraderie among gym members. 


6. Limit Cell Phone Use

A quick phone call, text or using your phone to log your workouts are acceptable. Avoid prolonged scrolling or texting while sitting on equipment and never have a long, loudspeaker-phone conversation while you are on the gym floor or cardio equipment. At Life Adapted Fitness we ask that you take your phone conversations to the lounge area, outside, or to your car. Playing music or videos aloud is also a nuisance to others. If you are using your phone to make a video of your workout, please be mindful of anyone in the area who may not want to be in the shot. 


Mastering gym etiquette is not only about following rules but also about fostering a sense of community and mutual respect among gym-goers. By adhering to these guidelines, you contribute to creating a welcoming and inclusive environment where everyone can pursue their fitness goals comfortably. So, the next time you hit the gym, remember to respect personal space, keep things clean, be mindful of noise levels, practice good hygiene, respect others' time, and limit your phone time. Together, we can all enjoy a positive and fulfilling workout experience. 


My name is Lisa Hampton, I’m a personal trainer and nutrition coach at Life Adapted Fitness where our goal is to make fitness a sustainable part of your life. If you have any questions or concerns, we are here to listen and help. You can contact us in person, by phone or at our website

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