Here's a look at the top ten peeves of gym enthusiasts in Abu Dhabi, from sweating on equipment to making strange noises.
23 July 2013| Last updated on 29 May 2017
Apart from your workout, what gets you all hot under the collar when you are at the gym? We asked around to find out what were the top peeves for gym goers when they are working out. These range from the mildly irritating through to the revolting and the downright dangerous. See if
any of these ring a bell with you!
1) Not wiping sweat of equipment or machines
There is nothing quite so revolting as picking up a piece of equipment or lying down on a mat to find it slippery with some strangers sweat. Working up a sweat is fantastic, however nobody wants to see it or share it with you and therefore it is common courtesy to other gym goers that you carry a small sweat towel with you to mop up after yourself.
2) Hogging gym equipment
The equipment in a gym can be in high demand at busy times, and therefore people just sitting down on the equipment whilst resting between reps can be extremely frustrating to others waiting to use it. Some workout styles demand that you complete a set then rest for a short period then repeat, however in a busy gym environment this is not always a practical or considerate way to work out. If you must, perhaps you should consider going at less busy times or you could modify your workout at busy times to a circuit style workout to keep the flow of use of the equipment.
3) Excessive yelling and grunting!
Effortful heavy lifting does require you to get fired up and exercise breath control, however, some gym goers seem to want take this to the extreme, releasing loud grunts and yells throughout their entire workout. The irritant level of this is variable; sometimes it is just funny, other times plain annoying, and occasionally it can be dangerous as it makes others lose concentration on their own workout. Getting all fired up to do that one last rep is fine and may warrant a little shout out, but not on every set!
4) Poor hygiene
Sweating is part and parcel of a good workout, and fresh sweat doesn’t generally smell too offensive, it is when it left on the body or clothing and bacteria comes along into the mix, that bad body odours occur. In a shared environment, walking around stinking and polluting everyone’s fresh air is just pure selfish in this day and age. When you arrive at the gym, make sure your clothes are fresh and if necessary take a shower and put on deodorant before your workout. Bad breath when you are huffing and puffing in a confined space can also be pretty disgusting also, so if you do suffer, brush your teeth or suck a mint prior to your workout and make sure you drink plenty of water, as dehydration also gives you yucky breath.
5) Interrupting others
Although there is of course a whole social element to going to the gym, whether in group classes or using the equipment, the primary purpose for most people there is working out to achieve their fitness goals. Interrupting people in the middle of a set of exercises for a chat is therefore generally a big no-no! Save chatter and socialising for breaks around the water cooler or at the beginning or as you leave the gym, people are likely to be much more receptive and friendly towards you then anyway. The same goes for constant chatting throughout a group exercise class. Of course social interaction is encouraged, but giving your mate a full rundown of the previous night’s episode of Eastenders is distracting for the other participants and the group exercise leader, especially when people are trying to follow instructions.
6) Gym Poseurs!
People that come to the gym in full make-up and outrageous gym gear will attract attention, although perhaps not quite the type that they are looking for. One piece bright pink spandex leotards and headbands looked fairly ridiculous back in the 80’s when they were ‘fashion’ and they certainly look even more ludicrous now! Full make up will also drip off your face if you are working out properly, and if it is not and your designer clothes are not even wrinkled let alone marked with sweat, then it is a sure sign you are there just to be seen and you will not be taken seriously. Same applies for those who spend the whole time in front of the mirror checking themselves out. The mirrors are very important to give visual feedback to ensure correct form when working out, they are not there for you to check your hair and admire yourself in every few minutes. That said, those who come wearing skimpy unflattering clothes could benefit from a glance or two in the mirror – crop tops and skin tight hot pants are really only the reserve of fitness magazine models, and should not be attempted by the average humble gym goer!
7) Not putting away equipment after use
There is no excuse for not tidying up after yourself in the gym. Unless you have suddenly injured yourself and need to go off for medical attention, you should be perfectly capable of re-racking your weights, or returning your mat and swiss ball from whence it came! Leaving equipment strewn around the gym is not only irritating for those trying to locate it to use it, but it can be a hazard for people falling over it. This applies to putting away equipment after group exercise classes too. Be considerate and be tidy, that’s it!
8) Locker room bad manners
This could be a whole section by itself! From those ladies who cant seem to pick up their wet towels after showering, to those who shed fistfuls of hair and leave it strewn around the floor and in the shower drains, to those who insist of walking round naked (which is prohibited in most gyms in the UAE), and those who monopolise the limited showers or mirrors or bench space - the list goes on! As a general rule though, it is not your own bathroom at home and you need to be considerate of others. You shouldn’t be attending to intimate grooming such as shaving your armpits and plucking your bikini line in a gym locker room also. Gross! Pick up after yourself, leave the locker room clean and tidy and be considerate to others and nobody will be offended.
9) Using mobile phones
Time in the gym should be time for yourself, so if your mobile is going off left right and centre throughout your workout, how can you be focussing on yourself and your workout? Granted, there may be times you need to be immediately contactable during your workout time, ie you have a sick child being looked after by a maid or friend, but generally speaking, do you need to have your phone on whilst you are in the gym? Phones blaring out, people chatting loudly, people running out of group classes, or worse answering the phone during a class, is distracting to others and to yourself. If you must have your phone with you, have it on silent and be selective of the calls you take. Your best mate wont mind waiting an hour to catch up on the gossip!
10) Misusing machines
Most public gyms have fitness instructors on the floor at all times to supervise and are on hand to show people how to safely use pieces of gym equipment. If you are not sure how a piece of equipment works, then ask! There is no shame in asking, as with so many different makes models
and types of equipment, you can be expected to automatically know how to use them all. You risk serious injury to yourself and/or damage to the machine if you misuse gym equipment. If something you use does get broken when you use it, then do make sure to report it immediately. As long as you were not misusing it, you will not get in trouble and you will be doing the management and other gym users a favour as then it can be fixed or replace for future use.
By Julie Willetts for expatwoman.com