Borrowed from Bo Dixon…
1. Talking during a set
Do not talk to someone in the middle of a set. This is very distracting and they are probably not listening to you anyway. Don’t be offended if and when they ignore you. Wait until they’re done.
2. Excessive talking
Don’t talk excessively to people during their workout. They are (usually) at the gym to work, not socialize. Socialize after the workout.
3. Through the looking glass
Walking or standing in front of someone during a set interferes with their concentration. People rely on the feedback from the mirror to help their balance and keep track of form, especially during overhead presses, squats, deadlifts, etc.
4. Working in with others
Always ask before you work in. It is very rude to just sit down on a machine or bench the instant someone gets off. Don’t ask to work in on a machine or bench if the other person is using a lot more or a lot less weight than you as it may take too long to change weights in between sets. Just wait until they’re done or find something else to do.
5. Working in with you
By the same token, it is rude not to let someone else work in with you. The exception to this is when it would interfere with your own workout, e.g. lots of weight changing or very short rest periods.
6. Bench hogs
Don’t hog benches or machines (unless it’s quiet and nobody else wants to use them).
7. Rolling, rolling, rolling
Don’t let your dumbells or barbells roll away from you as they can cause injury in others.
8. Water, water everywhere…
Don’t take too long at the water fountain. This includes filling up your water bottle. If someone is behind you, let them drink then resume filling. Don’t ever spit or blow your nose in the fountain, either.
9. Captain Safety strikes again
Don’t automatically jump in and spot someone the instant they look as though they’re having trouble. The hard reps are the most productive and you may screw it up by jumping in. Get into position and be ready if they ask but don’t assume.
10. Abusing your spotter
Don’t ask someone to spot you if you can’t lift the weight yourself in the first place. If your spotter gets a lower-back workout while you are bench pressing then you need to reevaluate the amount of weight you are using.
11. Too close for comfort
Don’t move your bench too close to other people’s benches. Some exercises require room to execute than others and you might just be in the way.
12. Resetting machines
If you work in on a machine, reset it back to where the other person had it after you’ve done your set.
13. Be nice
It’s not nice to laugh at other people just because they can’t lift as much as you. Remember, there is always someone else who can lift more than you.
If someone asks you for a spot, give it to them. If you don’t feel comfortable spotting them, e.g. they are using a very heavy weight, let them know.
15. The hills are alive…
Try not to yell and scream unnecessarily. This can distract other gym members. Sometimes it is necessary but if you scream during a set of wrist curls, something is wrong.
16. Dropping and banging
Don’t drop weights or bang them together unnecessarily. Not only can you hurt your joints by banging and dropping weights, it is very distracting to others.
17. Too much information
Don’t hold loud, in-depth conversations around people while they are doing a set.
If you tend to spray spit when you lift (it happens), make sure there is no one in the target area.
19. Pepe La Pew Part 1
Don’t wear excessive cologne or perfume to the gym. It can be very unpleasant for others who are breathing heavily.
20. Pepe La Pew Part 2
Bathe regularly. ‘Nuff said.