Are gyms unfriendly places?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 22, 2010 11:43 AM GMT
    Hi There Real Jockers!

    Is it just me or are gyms today really unfriendly places? Everyone seems intent on jamming their ear buds in as soon as they get there and if you smile at anyone its rarely returned. Some people seem to give each other the "don't you dare talk to me look".

    Does anyone else find this to be true?

    I was hoping that I might make some friends at my new gym but it seems highly unlikely...

    How times have changed.... icon_neutral.gif

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 22, 2010 1:54 PM GMT
    You just have to become a regular. Eventually the people who are already regular will start talking to you. Right now they're in the "Protect my Territory" stage,and they see you as an interloper. When they realize that you aren't there to inhibit them or their workout. They'll warm up to you and start saying, "Hello."

  • bkjhebert

    Posts: 40

    Jun 22, 2010 3:14 PM GMT
    Some gyms develop a bad vibe because people give off an attitude of superiority. The same can happen in an office environment. It is really disappointing when this occurs. I try to make a difference by introducing myself and saying hello. I find that people like to be complimented and they also like to talk about themselves. This usually leads to a friendlier atmosphere.
  • Fritter

    Posts: 1696

    Jun 22, 2010 3:21 PM GMT
    I tend to agree with BlueDemon, after being at my gym for almost a year, most of the others are alot more friendlier to me then they were the first little while.
  • Rookz

    Posts: 947

    Jun 22, 2010 3:23 PM GMT
    My aspect, the gym is my escape and I don't want that peace disturbed. The earphone is there to take me elsewhere to help me moving/grooving as I work out. I only have so much time in the day and would like to make my time in the gym efficient so I can move on to my next agenda. I say my greetings or provide a smile to those I've encountered; then life moves on.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 22, 2010 3:24 PM GMT
    I think there are lots of guys at the gym who are checking each other out.
    My favorite 'flirt' is when a hot guy walks in front of me and lifts his shirt to wipe his face when he obviously has a towel.
    OK. I've done that once or twice myself.
    Is that common at all?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 22, 2010 3:27 PM GMT
    i think they're pretty friendly. i mean yeah everyone is listening to their music and focused on working out (what they came the to do) but ive never exsperienced anything unfriendly. If i make eye contact with someone ill smile and nod and ill get at least a nod. somtimes a "hey hows it going".

    one thing that will really make a diference (ive noticed) walk in with a good attitude, looking up, and politly smile at people. i think people in general just feel odd initiating friendlyness. i serriously doubt people would sneer at someone being polite.
    then again it could be a cultural-area thing too
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 22, 2010 3:37 PM GMT
    I tend to "appear" standoff-ish while working out, unless I need a machine and ask if I can work in.
    Other than that, i agree with BlueDemon. It takes time for people to warm up to newbies.
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    Jun 22, 2010 4:10 PM GMT
    It is as unfriendly as you take it to be. I go to one of the more...shall we say...elitest gyms and find that you have two types of people...those that know what the hell they are doing and the other 250 people in the gym. If you know how to lift and don't block other peoples progress in their goal then you have nothing to worry about. However if you do these things and treat the gym like a social club then yeah more often then not you will find some people will be rude because they do not want to be bothered by idle chatter.

    Its like any other place...if you were to go to a bar you wouldn't just go up and interrupt someone elses conversation...same concept at the gym. Its all in how you approach the situation that determines how your interactions will be.

    I can say from personal experience that when I am in the gym I am there to lift very heavy weights and then go home to a nice steak dinner...and generally not meet people, however it does happen. Someone mentioned when you become a regular is normally when this occurs and I concur. You will meet people and maybe even friends if you aren't too much of a tool...but the fact is that its the gym...you are paying a lot of money to become an adonis....and you won't become one by chatting and smiling.
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    Jun 22, 2010 4:15 PM GMT
    I think it just depends on the person.

    Some people can get into "the zone" when they're working out and tune everything out... for some, that's actually their form of mental and emotional catharsis and meditation. Some people are on a tight schedule and don't have time to socialize (that seemed to be the case when I was in New York), but would normally do so elsewhere. And some are there just to be seen and see... these are the ones I like to stay away from personally just because I hate being "stared at" when I can't necessarily get away (meaning I can't go someplace else because I am in the middle of a set or on a machine).

    I dunno... I wouldn't let it get under your skin. Someone's bound to not be like any of the guys I am describing above. You'll know 'em when you see 'em.

  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Jun 22, 2010 4:19 PM GMT
    I think it depends on the gym and the individual. Some gyms arguably are not friendly places, maybe those in the middle of large cities. Some may seem to be that way because the members are very serious about their workouts and are in a crunch for time (if mid day). Others may seem much more open and friendly.

    I think it also depends on the personality of the individual. If you are naturally one that adds friends... some gyms may work well. Others no.
  • gonewind

    Posts: 37

    Jun 22, 2010 4:20 PM GMT
    Eh, for me the gym is the place to work out and devote time to myself. Its my me time, so I am one of those guys that jams the earbuds in, adjust the ipod, and just zone out. I recognize people and give a nod of acknowledgment but I don't go to the gym with the intention of socializing.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 22, 2010 4:21 PM GMT
    BlueDemon saidYou just have to become a regular. Eventually the people who are already regular will start talking to you. Right now they're in the "Protect my Territory" stage,and they see you as an interloper. When they realize that you aren't there to inhibit them or their workout. They'll warm up to you and start saying, "Hello."



    True.
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Jun 22, 2010 6:28 PM GMT
    i find walking around the locker room in a jockstrap always makes other guys nice to me.
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    Jun 22, 2010 6:33 PM GMT
    calibro saidi find walking around the locker room in a jockstrap always makes other guys nice to me.


    icon_lol.gif laughing out fucking loud!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 22, 2010 6:43 PM GMT
    Yeah, I'm probably one of those guys, too. I turn my iPod on, put my earbuds in, and I start working out. I'm usually too busy concentrating on my workout that I don't see or hear anybody or anything. And I probably do have one of those "don't you dare talk to me" looks but it's not intentional - I'm just in the zone and concentrating on why I'm there which is to workout.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 22, 2010 6:44 PM GMT
    my gym seems to be super friendly. yet not in an annoying way. most people do wear earbuds and do their own thing. at the same time i don't see a lot of the rude behaviors i've seen at gyms in the past. i routinely see casual side conversations also. i recently switched to a smaller location of a local gym chain. I am super happy with the experience.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 22, 2010 6:54 PM GMT
    Do you use a gay gym?

    If you do, you will find a certain subset of guys there with the attitude: "I'm so pretty and out of your league, you are like the gum on the sole of my shoe." icon_rolleyes.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 22, 2010 7:05 PM GMT
    The guys in my small gym speak to each other and they're apt to talk a little bit, but this is a serious gym and people are there to get in a work out - and then get going. I never see any out of shape people in new matching outfits that look around and try to gab with others. You know, the "January - New Year's Resolution - - do you like my new outfit from Walmart?" bunch. They're never going to come to my gym.

    Nothing wrong with talking at the gym, but most of us are intensely working out - counting sets, remembering weight amounts - focused on what we're doing. We're friendly, just not inclined to visit and chat a whole lot.

    icon_cool.gif
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    Jun 22, 2010 7:09 PM GMT
    If you go to a gym that does have a big gay population, I find it can tend to get cruisey... which usually diminishes the level of friendliness. Guys are too busy looking for eye candy and such, and it tends to make guys that aren't interested in that, pull back and keep away.

    It generates the atmosphere where if someone looks at you, it means something beyond just being friendly. Which really sucks when you are just trying to be friendly.
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    Jun 22, 2010 7:10 PM GMT
    Here's MY take on this.....1st, u gotta pay ur dues - meaning once the other 'serious' gym guys see u r too, they'll be more apt to be open to a simple greeting. 2nd, the friendly guys are probably str8.
  • EricLA

    Posts: 3461

    Jun 22, 2010 7:27 PM GMT
    I think regulars get a bit annoyed at newbies. When you've been going to the same gym for weeks and months and years, you can pick out the regulars and the people who don't take it seriously. When people get used to seeing you consistently, they'll acknowledge you. You are right that headphones can make people aloof. Partly it's a way to get them in the zone. I prefer my music to the gym's music, and it keeps me goal-oriented, so true, I'm not always super social. But, I say hello to the regulars and I'll give pointers to the newbies.
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    Jun 22, 2010 7:30 PM GMT
    WestAussieGuy saidHi There Real Jockers!

    Is it just me or are gyms today really unfriendly places? Everyone seems intent on jamming their ear buds

    How times have changed.... icon_neutral.gif



    I suppose it really depends on where you are.

    Where I work out, the people are relatively friendly. Even the people you think are meat heads are considerate about using machines and weights. Although, you can't totally take out the possibility that there are people who are bunch of snobs and inconsiderate about other users.

    Times have changed, but you don't have to change to be like them. Just work your ass out and the boys will check them out icon_biggrin.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 22, 2010 7:38 PM GMT
    I find the gym to be frequently over stimulating with so many people and so many varied levels of readiness for social engagement.

    I have gym friends that always engage with and when I'm on my own I always try to smile, it prompts other friendly people to do likewise. For the most part I'm a pleaser and want to make others comfortable.

    HOWEVER, if someone isn't outwardly friendly to me I don't internalize it... if they're rude to me I let them know they are being an asshole, if they continue to be an asshat I threaten to beat their ass to a bloody pulp, smile and wait for them to walk away.

    Just like ice cream, cuddles and Italian snakeskin boots with a cuban heel... sometimes violence is the answer, but usually the answer is a friendly smile.
  • tallchris

    Posts: 121

    Jun 22, 2010 7:47 PM GMT
    It's not a social club or a bar. It's a gym. It's for working out. I go to a gay-ish gym and I am obviously not one of the young gorgeous ones, but I don't want to chit-chat with anyone. After a hard day's work, I want to focus on a hard work-out, not be bothered between sets (oh all right, I admit to enjoying the eye candy) and get home to dinner. Most others do the same, and the few noisy chatters can be a bit distracting.

    Having said that, I know I am a grumpy old bastard. If anyone (unaccountably) wants to chat and is willing to risk his head being bitten off if I don't prise myself out of "the zone" as someone else put it, it would probably do me good.

    I guess getting a workout partner would be a good idea, for the OP and me both. If it works well, that can increase focus on the workout but add sociability too.