FLEX 24 Family,
Time to Master Gym Etiquette
Sweating on the machines without cleaning up and dropping weights are only two of many things you need to know when it comes to gym etiquette.


You’ve become a member of FLEX 24; you definitely know what you’re doing when it comes to techniques and routine or at least recognize that FLEX 24 is by far the best gym Odessa, TX has to offer. However, there’s much more to a gym membership than paying your dues and showing up every week. What about gym etiquette? Are you familiar with it? Read up on the the following tips and see how you rate.


The main reason we go to the gym is to use the superior equipment you won’t find at Academy or Sears. While exercises can be performed at home, it’s often easier to rely on machines that were specifically designed for the sole purpose of training a certain group of muscles. Are you using all the equipment properly?

Return the weights Whenever you use dumbbells or plates, be considerate enough to put them back where they belong when you’re done. The other gym members are here to train, not to participate in a scavenger hunt.

Don’t hog machines A gym being a community of sorts, sharing is mandatory. Do your sets the way you have them planned, training efficiently. Rest, repeat, and move on. Should you be doing supersets, notify the others and let them use the machine while you’re busy elsewhere.

Wipe the machines Can you imagine walking to a machine and finding it covered with the previous guy or gal’s sweat? You want to avoid being that person. If you happen to drip all over a piece of equipment, wipe it down using the disinfectant provided by FLEX. Also, use a towel to separate yourself from the machine while you make use of it.

Limit yourself While working out on the cardiovascular equipment, people are expected to spend 20 to 30 minutes on a machine. Try not exceeding that time limit and let other users benefit from the equipment. If no one is waiting for your spot, feel free to keep going.

Don’t drop the weights While FLEX is not a library, respect the equipment. When the weights cost two plus dollars a pound you need to realize that your just not worth it! Don’t drop weights for any reason! Pick up weight you can handle or use a spotter! You certainly don’t want someone on the treadmill to slip and fall because they think Armageddon is here. Worse than that, get kicked out and be forced to buy a bowflex or ab coaster!


Proper Socialization
Once you know how to handle the equipment, you need to hone your social skills. There are things you must and must not do to be regarded as a member the others won’t try to dodge.

Don’t pressure users One thing you don’t want to do is constantly ask people if they’ve finished using a machine when they’re obviously still exercising on it. Wait for them to stop before asking. Don’t tap your foot impatiently while waiting either.

Spot those who need it You may be deemed annoying if you start going around asking everyone if they need a spot, monopolizing their time. If you see someone who is in dire need of a spot, risking injury without one, only then should you offer your services.

Furthermore, when you do spot someone, make sure you’re not the one doing all the lifting and that you can handle the weight. The latter is especially important since, if you’re not strong enough, your spot will be useless and dangerous for the weightlifter.

Don’t offer your advice to others You might have a Ph.D. in physical training from Harvard with specialized experience with the national Olympic team, but no one cares. The advice you give should be limited to when you notice someone who’s going to hurt himself.

Keep in mind that you may not be the most knowledgeable person in the room. If you feel compelled to critique someone’s training method, do so in a constructive manner, being polite and acknowledging what they’re doing right first.

Talk sparingly FLEX isn’t a social club; you’re not there to shoot the breeze with the members. Conversations should be kept brief and limited to resting periods in between sets. These short discussions must be held out of the way so people can train without interruption. In addition, don’t initiate conversations with people wearing headphones; they obviously don’t feel chatty. Finally, while you’re taking a break, don’t sit on a machine — others may want to use it.

Don’t hit on every babe It’s true that a gym is a great way to view a guy or a gals physique, but that doesn’t give you a hunting license. Don’t go around asking every woman or guy out. They became members to get fit, not to be hit on.


Common Courtesy
When you have the essentials down pat, you need to exercise the universal civility you would apply in any other situation.

No cell phones As with all public places, unless you’re waiting for an important call, it’s recommended that you silence your mobile device at FLEX. As well, bringing your phone into the locker room and using it will make other guys and gals feel uncomfortable; especially considering the latest models have integrated cameras and, well, nobody wants their butt being the main attraction on a sketchy website.

Pick up after yourself Leave your training space as clean as the way you found it. Don’t leave any food wrappers, water bottles, towels, or any other items behind. Keep your locker clean, orderly, and don’t leave anything lying around for the next person. Your membership fee is for use of the facility; it’s not a maid service.

Don’t grunt loudly Unless you have tiger genes, try to minimize your yelling while exercising. Of course, it’s natural to emit little noises when doing strenuous lifts, but remember that the others around you are concentrating on their own work out and don’t need to hear “the loud guy” screaming for attention.

Smell good Exercising makes you sweat and perspiration causes body odor. Can you see in your mind’s eye how badly it would stink if no one at the gym did something about it? Arm yourself with an effective deodorant and use it adequately. However, don’t douse yourself with cologne; overcompensation can be just as unpleasant for fellow members.

Be considerate of the water fountain A water fountain’s purpose is to drink, not spit or throw away your gum. Moreover, if there’s a huge lineup at the water fountain, don’t be disrespectful of others by filling your huge water bottle.

No foul language As with any other social venue, be respectful of your surroundings and of the fact that people of all ages might be present on the premises. Don’t use foul language or insult people who are less proficient in their training.

Don’t walk in front of mirrors Well, you can walk in front of mirrors as long as you don’t pass in front of someone who is using it to get their stance right. By the same token, if you’re looking at yourself in a mirror from across the room, don’t get mad if someone passes in front of you. If you must use a mirror, it’s better to stand close to it so that your actions are unambiguous to the rest of the crowd.
Work out, muscle man or fit lady! When you get right down to it, FLEX is a small community of like-minded individuals. Mastering proper gym etiquette can be quite helpful in your relationship with others. Once everybody knows the rules, it’s much more fun to work out, as there’s no reason to be uncomfortable.

In Good Health,