Gym Etiquette (again)

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 30, 2008 7:26 AM GMT
    So here's something that happened to me today at the gym. Posting this to see what you guys would do.

    I placed my workout towel on the back of a machine I was about to use. I adjusted the weights and then remembered that this machine is directly under one of the TVs in my gym. With the election coverage tonight, and being a politically observant guy, I stepped two feet away from the machine to look at the screen and see who was winning Florida on CNN.

    All of five seconds later I go to step back to the machine and there is a guy there. I watch as he picks up my towell and literally tosses it through the air and onto the aparatus of another machine.

    "Um, excuse me... that's my towel you just tossed over there. I was about to use this machine."

    "Oh yeah? Do you own it?"

    "The Machine?"

    "Yeah." As he's stepping into the fly machine.

    As I'm walking to pick up my towel.. "No, but you could have just asked." with towel in hand, "You don't have to be so rude."

    And off I went to the cross cables and did my fly workout there.

    First of all, if I had sat my towel on the machine and walked away for even 20 seconds, I could see someone being a little peaved - but seriously, it was all of five seconds and I was no more than 3 feet from the machine.

    Secondly, What exactly was it that pissed him off so much - the fact that I was using a towel to cover the equipment? that I had headphones on? That I confronted him? This guy was there with his buddy, who kind of looks like the annoying "INCONCEIVABLE" guy from The Princess Bride. And as you can see from my pics, I'm no where near the biggest guy, or the most ripped guy in the gym, but I'm far more in shape than either of these yahoos. Neither of which carry workout towels with them or listen to their MP3 player/CD player/radio while working out. And both of them are much older than me (no offense for you older, fit, fantastically gorgeous men on are my inspiration)

    Third, this guy was up in my face too - as though I had done something wrong just by being in his way.

    I would never think of picking up and tossing a towel from a machine unless I had waited, looked around, and asked those nearby. If it was someone's I would never treat them rudely, I'd just ask how many sets they had left, And I would never think so highly of myself to boss someone else around the gym.

    Why is it so hard for some people to just be nice to each other? This kind of thing happen to you?

  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Jan 30, 2008 11:33 AM GMT
    If you really were gone for just 5 seconds then you have a gripe
    I woulda made sure I sat right on top of him until he was done and then started to readjust the weights
    and if he said something I'd say
    You can work in if you want

    Takin' the high road
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 30, 2008 4:15 PM GMT
    I probably would have cursed him out which may have led to a fist fight. I hate rude people.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 30, 2008 4:29 PM GMT
    Got to play it off funny yet with them knowing what's up! It's happened to me several times and the one that I always use is this...

    "Hey man! Did you wanna work in with me? I was gonna start my set, you're welcome to if you want."

    Works EVERY TIME! Actually, I met a cool (straight guy) after that. So, you're not backing down yet you're not letting him get away with it either.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 30, 2008 4:54 PM GMT
    My gym is not super busy, but even in peak times if I see a towel on a machine and I see someone nearby, I consider it taken. The polite thing to do would be to ask to work in. 20 seconds, 30 seconds. rude is rude.

    Good job standing up to him. sounds like a douche.
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    Jan 30, 2008 5:05 PM GMT
    DJBens77 said
    sounds like a douche

    I agree with DJBens77. And we all know that there are many like that at any gym.
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  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 31, 2008 12:37 AM GMT
    Well similar situation happened to me but other way around. I was wanting to use a shoulder raise machine. Well, this douche who was a regular at my gym had been on it last when I looked over when I was on another machine. I go over and cant find him then see he's prob. a good 15-20 feet away just gabbing away to someone. I stare at him and he doesnt acknowledge me and he had a towel I think on the machine. Well, I waited for about 20 seconds and he never came over so I get on the machine. As I'm in the middle of doing my second set of reps he got all nasty towards me saying he was using it and his stuff was there. I told him that I didnt see him anywhere near it and didnt know whose towel it was (lie but if I hadnt seen him there before I might not have figured it out) and he was talking to someone and nowhere close to the machine. He got nasty with me and I did back and laughed at him. He said some comment "looks like you need the workout" and I mentioned "not as much as you". He was some guy in his 50s, prob. a bit shorter than me and not as built and I was really thinking of just knocking his ass out. But he was smart and walked away. In this case I dont think I was out of line since he was gone for so long. Bloddy people think the fucking gym is social hour and think they have dibs on every fucking machine in there. Like a bunch of kids who need a good ass beating thinking they're entitled to everything.

    Oh, and I'm not taking the other guy's side in your sotry skot. Clearly you werent in the wrong. If you had been staring at the tv forever but u didnt and werent far from your station. Sounds like this dude was your typical gym douche.
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    Jan 31, 2008 1:00 AM GMT
    I must be ridiculously lucky but this kind of behavior just does not normally happen in the gyms I have gone to. Everyone there is in their ipod - their seperate zone working out. If you are a regular, people respect you and ask to work in. I think it could be the way that my gym is set up as well. People who are in less decent shape, are often in the cable-weight area and on the treadmills. People that know what they are doing are in the free weight areas. While it is not an obvious and blatent difference in other gyms where you have machines mixed together versus having order....I guess you are more inclined to have people making dick moves when it comes to equipment.

    Now for the two situations - where one guy was the towel dropper (skotjock) and the other moved the towel (murphy) - I am more inclined to agree with the first story over the second. The reason being the machine was clearly open, he clearly put weight on it, maybe he should have sat on the machine for 20 seconds just to really put a claim on it - but I can understand. The second story, I mean yeah he was off the machine and yes he was off talking to someone else - however you did not ask the guy whether he was finished or not. Eye contact in a gym doesn't mean much to most people and if he was talking he was probably engaged in conversation rather than worrying about his workout.

    You knew he was using the machine and you should have asked him if he was finished. This would at least let him know that he is now being a nuisance because other people are waiting and would have possibly corrected his behavior rather than being confrontational.

  • DrStorm

    Posts: 185

    Jan 31, 2008 1:31 AM GMT
    Not to be a dick, BUT....Want to watch TV - stay home to watch it...Want to speak on your phone, do it away from the machines/benches, weights. I don't care if it's 5 seconds....gym is for working out.

    YES, the guy was rude - I'd have politely removed your towel and not been an asshole about it. Keep in mind, what you may perceive not to be a big deal by placing your towel on a machine and then stepping away really IS a major annoyance to others in the gym who have a limited workout time and don't have the time to figure out whose towel it is.


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  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 31, 2008 5:30 AM GMT
    DrStorm saidNot to be a dick, BUT....Want to watch TV - stay home to watch it...Want to speak on your phone, do it away from the machines/benches, weights. I don't care if it's 5 seconds....gym is for working out.

    Yeah - actually I agree with you Dr. Storm. As I said, it's not a usual practice for me. I watch TV when I'm on the cardio machines.

    The more detailed situation was that I was sick of the song I was listening to on my MP3 Player, so changing the song made me think - oh yeah, the TV. Wander if anything changed in Florida... That's about the amount of time I was away from the machine.

    As for time... these guys where there for long after I left. I see them there from time to time and they spend more time trading typical Republicanisms and discussing the size of their boats than actually working out.

    Thanks for the thoughts guys. Guess I was just looking to vent...
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    Jan 31, 2008 6:06 AM GMT

    I've never had this done, but I've DONE this. I was practically stalking this guy waiting for him to slip up and then BLAM, I pounced. Only difference this guy was like 7 feet tall, 400 pounds of pure muscle. He just rubbed my head and said "Whoa, lil guy."
    I went home, rubbed my head right where he had, smelled my hand (his hand) and proceeded to wank myself into oblivion.

    My point is, some guys are just looking for trouble at the gym. What you did was practical. What this guy did was an obnoxious douche bag thing to do. And, don't listen to Dr. Storm, as cute as he is because h'es wrong. It's ok to watch t.v. in the gym. The gym is not just for working out, people watch t.v, people chat, people play on the courts (if your gym has them), some guys like me just come to cruise. It's OK to watch t.v, why else are the television sets there for, to be pretty?

    Still,I am glad you confronted the person. In most threads like this, the Real Jock doesn't say anything, but you did. You just ran into a couple troublemakers. They won't be the last.
  • art_smass

    Posts: 960

    Jan 31, 2008 6:25 AM GMT
    My gym doesn't seem to be too bad, but I'm Canadian and were so polite it's creepy.

    Nevertheless, something funny happened to me a week ago while I was working out. I wanted to use the Strive tricep pushdown machine, and this young guy was on it. He got up and moved to the calf-raise machine about a foot away. When I asked if he was done he said that he had four more sets to do. I asked why he was on the calf machine, and he told me that he was "supersetting." I said "No, you're not!" and sat down at the tricep machine.

    Who does supersets of calves and triceps?
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    Jan 31, 2008 6:46 AM GMT
    This doesn't seem to happen too me very often. Everyone at my gym is usually very polite and there doesn't seem to be a lot of fighting over the machines. There is an old lady that glares at me like she wants me to get off a machine sometimes, but she's crazy and farts frequently so she doesn't deserve to work in.