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"Eight Things You Should Observe In A Gym"

Post on: March 22, 2021

A gym membership used to be exclusively for the “Atas” (rich and snobbish). But not anymore –there is no dearth of gymnasium. They have sprouted throughout our Lion City and have become affordable to the common man.

We are spoilt for choice and can even find a 24-hour gym in the heartland. Not surprisingly, many fitness enthusiasts have jumped on the bandwagon and taken up membership. Notwithstanding the decor and state of art equipment, a visit to the gym can be an intimidating experience for a novice.

Fret not! we bring you the unwritten laws and etiquette which can make your journey towards fitness a smoother ride.

1.Think safety — Some members have the habit of placing the barbells or doing the kettlebell swing around the entrances and aisle. This poses a safety hazard — people have to pass through these areas and can get injured unnecessarily.

2.Secure with a weight collar — In the gym where I work out, there is this guy who does his barbell workouts like a daredevil. He progressively adds weight-plates but does not secure them. One day, a plate slid off, causing an imbalance and crashing of plates! It was frightening but luckily nobody was hurt. Don’t take short-cuts — attach a weight collar.

3.Equipment is for everyone — consideration is the buzz word. I have seen people hogging treadmills for more than an hour while others are fumingly waiting. It is a basic courtesy not to overuse the equipment. As a rule of thumb 20 – 30 minutes of treadmill usage would be a reasonable duration during peak hours.

4.Use a towel — Most of the equipment seats and handles are made of leather and you don’t want to leave your “nauseating” marks for the next person! Wipe your perspiration after use. Basic cleanliness is important while sharing with others.

5.Mirror, Mirror on the wall — It is interesting to note that gyms have mirrors everywhere in their design. A lot of gym rats like to watch themselves as they lift weights. You may say they are vain but it serves as a motivation — giving them the impetus to exert further. More importantly, it helps one to see if they are using the correct techniques and how to right a wrong . So don’t block their view if you can.

6.Socializing — Gyms are a great place to socialise and make friends. However, there are “buayas” (Romeos) who sign up after doing their survey on the number of stunning beauties in the gym membership. My advice is to stay neutral and be acquainted with genuine reasons. Don’t unleash your pick-up lines or harass a lady. Ogling at babes isn’t acceptable. Stealing glances? I leave it to you. But remember — words spread around like bushfire and you don’t want to be ostracised, do you?

7.Giving and receiving advice? — Unsolicited advice you receive may be well-meaning but may not be right. Alternatively, those receiving advice from you may take offence and reject it outright. Some people deem a gym as a place where people with big egos congregate — so don’t attempt to bruise or dampen their self-esteem . Advise only if you know them personally.

8.Dolby sound effect? Some patrons like to make loud noises while working out in the gym. I’ve come across a guy who grunts in the most irritatingly! — as if he’s constipated and emptying his bowels with such a herculean effort! If you must do it, be mindful of people around you. Do it in style (I mean the grunts). Most people are fine with a bit of noise.

The Jolly Good Times believes working out can have far-reaching benefits beyond owning a gym membership. Go ahead and get sweaty — the gym is close to home and never closed.

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By Shaji Thomas Varughese
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Photo: George/Jolly Good Times

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