Each Friday I will post some gym rants that are less instructional/informational, nor specific to training approaches and exercise instruction/selection geared towards the wheelchair lifter. Today I will jump into Part 1 of Gym Douchebags from the perspective of the wheelchair lifter.
There are some people at the gym that are either completely oblivious to Gym Etiquette or just oblivious to basic human decency and consideration towards others. These people are either self-centered, selfish, inconsiderate to others or some combination of all of these. In the world of a Gym I classify these people as Gym Douchebags. These people either dress, do, say or emanate something that is annoying, distracting or inconsiderate to the normal humans at that gym.
The first set of traits I will hammer are the douchebags that leave their weights and equipment EVERYWHERE!! (As Elaine would say DOUBLE EXCLAMATION)
In the gym I use to VERY regularly attend there was a "personal trainer", I use that term loosely as this individual was trying to run a side training business by bringing in clients acting as BROs in a group workout so he didn't have to give a piece of the pie to the gym, which is its own world of douchery, but I digress. This guy and his crew would leave shit everywhere, especially dumbells.
One day this crew was performing seated dumbell military presses using a pyramid style where they had dumbell sets of 15s, 20s, 25s, 30s, and 35s. First off, just using that much equipment at one time is a douche move on its own due to the amount of space and resource it takes up, but I do not think these guys were all to concerned about any other person in the gym. These guys went through their entire shoulder pressing workout cycling each person in and out for around 20+ minutes. When they were done they stood around BS-ing for a bit and then just casually walked out of the gym and LEFT ALL THE DUMBELLS LAYING AROUND!!! The result was AT LEAST 10 dumbells laying around taking up a considerable amount of space. To the point where a couple of us that happened to be in the general area had no choice but to put away this equipment as a common courtesy to other humans. I had thought they were just hitting the bathroom or getting some water, but no, completely took off.
There are at least two MAJOR reasons this is an actual problem and not me just being a grumpy guy:
- Dangerous to all. Dumbells are not necessarily stable, especially Non-Hex dumbells which can easily roll around and in this case did.
- Nearly Impossible to wheel around. Most gyms are already fairly tight on walkways and getting around equipment for a wheelchair lifter can be a bit like a downhill skiing slalom course, but add 10+ dumbells laying around and its a nightmare.
What I also do not get in this specific example is this main guy was trying to run an under the table training business attempting to cut out the gym. If you were doing this, wouldn't you be a just a tad more sly and undercover about it and try to NOT draw attention to yourself? You know a #1 way to to NOT be discreet? Leave shit all over the gym angering everyone, inconveniencing most of them and possibly hurting a few of them.
All of these guys deserve some blame as it is just a common courtesy to not purposely inconvenience others when it is within your control. But I heavily place the majority of the blame on the "trainer" as he should certainly know better, in addition to his covert op he was running.
The lesson is some people in this world are just douchebags we we must educate these specimens on acceptable human etiquette. If you are able to catch anyone in a similar scenario CALL THEM OUT! Ask them if they plan on putting their shit away. Or ask them if it is okay for someone else in the gym to use a dumbell yet, or the straight back bench as they stand BS-ing for 10 minutes after use of the equipment. Make them aware of their selfishness so hopefully they become just a tad more self aware, making the gym-world a better place for all of us.