Top 10 Etiquette Rules in the Gym and Theater

Imagine yourself at the start of the new year with the “new you” mindset. You decide to get swole before the upcoming beach season just over the 5 month horizon. Now imagine you had a successful day working out and decide to treat yourself by watching the latest superhero movie… Wow what a great movie! Unfortunately you forgot a couple basic rules along the way and now everyone from the gym thinks you’re an asshat and you left an infamous image of yourself at your favorite theater.  The good news for you is much like your body, you can change your etiquette for the better at these places by following these simple rules:


10. Re-rack the weights

This one is a no brainer for anyone who goes to the gym. There is nothing more tedious than doing more work. Also, how am I supposed to know if a bar is open for use or not?

9. Curling in the Squat Rack

If you are a person that curls in the squat rack you need to reevaluate your life (I’m joking). On a serious note, they aren’t called the “curl racks” or even the “shoulder shrug racks,” they are specifically designed for lower body exercises. So if you are curling in one and taking away from someone who wants to squat, that’s not good etiquette.

8. Wipe down a wet bench

MOIST… Yeah I bet that word made you uncomfortable when you read it. Now try visually seeing that on a bench. I don’t need your pre-workout induced back sweat lubing up every machine you come in contact with. Gyms usually supply towels and spray to keep everything looking clean.

7. No more than a 3 man squad lifting together

I am all for having some support to go to the gym in the form of a gym partner(s), but there is a line between spotting one another and using the gym as a social gathering. I’m trying to use a bench to beef up my scrawny ass chest, but it takes an hour for one to open up because the Brady Bunch decided that was a good place to set up shop. If there is a case where large amount of your friends want to hit the gym together, then split up into smaller (less annoying) groups.

6. No one likes a “gym hog”

Occasionally I may walk over to a machine only to find myself confronted by a fellow gym member who was already using said machine. My b bro I will do a different set till you’re done. What I won’t tolerate is that same bloke walking from the first machine to several others in a rapid circuit. Unless if you’re the Flash and can hit the salmon ladder in half a second, you need to slow your roll brochacho. Sharing is caring even in a testosterone cluster fuck like a public gym.

5. There is no AUX cord dude

What I mean by this is do not play your shitty gym playlist for everyone else to hear. Yeah everyone forgets their headphone now and then, but that is your mistake to live with not mine.

4. No Hoarding Dumbbells

This is pretty much the same as number 6 but I can’t stress this enough. I get it, dropsets are a very effective way to workout. I even do them myself from time to time. But there is no need to have several sets of dumbbells around your bench, unless of course you’re Machamp (Pokémon joke). So get some light cardio in and re-rack your dumbbells when you’re done using them.

3. Cell Phone Use

Cell phones can be a really good tool for the gym. You can track your workouts, use them as a timer and obviously listen to music. On the other hand, people can get lost in them while sitting on a machine, and that’s not good. You don’t want to be “that guy.” So save the social media surfing for after your workout. 

2. Chill Out Rocky                                                                                                                                            
This isn’t really gym etiquette, but it is something that I find extremely annoying. People who shadow box at the gym… WHY?! I get it, you can probably beat me up, it’s not that hard to do. There are gyms that are specifically boxing oriented. So you should probably go piss off the people in those gyms instead of mine, thanks. Rant over… moving on!!

1. If I Wanted Your Advice I Would’ve Asked

Tell me I’m an asshole or a hardo or whatever you’d like, but don’t tell me what I could do better. When I’m at the gym and in my own little zone, I don’t want to be bothered by unsolicited lifting advice. I know you’re trying to “help me out,” thanks but no thanks buddy. If I hurt myself, that’s on me and take full responsibility. That’s why I signed the waiver when I got my gym membership. You may think I’m being very ignorant, but I think it’s more of me being anti-social.



Do yourself a favor and read this rule literally. Most movies come with their own gags to serve as comic relief and it is normal to laugh when appropriate. However, if your giggling lasts for more than several “giggles”, then you are disrupting the proceeding scenes of the movie as well as pissing off all the other viewers.

9. Do not give in to concessions

Only rookies actually spend more money on popcorn and soda than the ticket itself. Instead grab a bottle of water from home and some snacks from the local dollar store before entering. There is no TSA agents to grope movie goers. Only minimum wage ushers doing ocular pat downs at best. (Though concessions do help support your theater, so shop once and awhile.)

8. Cellphones and other electronics

I have personal beef with this one if I’m being honest. Imagine watching the last Harry Potter film and during the scene where Harry “dies” and speaks to Dumbledore and there is utter silence except for the dialogue. Oh but wait, some dumb ass kid who was not born into the Harry Potter era decided to bring his Nitendo DS and put the volume on blast disrupting the entire serious scene. WTH kid?! If you are not interested in the movie then either don’t go or GTFO! Do not use electronics during the movie, that is a GOLDEN rule.

7. Do not chew like a cow/dinosaur

Even if you follow rule 9, you still need to mind the noise level of wrappers or chewing. I’m not trying to listen to Jurassic Park unless I’m actually watching the movie.

6. Learn how assigned seating works.

Most of the theaters around me have transitioned to assigned seats when you buy your tickets. And this has been a thing for a while now. And yet there is always one dumb ass who cannot seem to read their ticket right. This makes for an awkward encounter when I have to tell them they are in my spot (I am not Sheldon Cooper).

5. Wait for the post credit scenes

If you watch all of the MCU movies and you have not yet realized they always do a post credit scene(s), then this is where I educate you. Also it is good etiquette to recognize the names behind a movie you may have enjoyed.

4. Save the play by play for sports

People who feel the need to explain the movie to the people next to them need to shut the f up. You are talking during the movie! That is the second GOLDEN rule in a theater.

3. Learn how to time bathroom runs

This one is for your own good as to not miss any important scenes. Obviously try to go before the movie (duh). However, if nature calls during the movie you have three options. one is to go when you gotta go and hope you have a friend who can adequately fill you in. Second you could download an app that can suggest a good time to go for you which I have seen done second hand. Third you could just be an actual adult and hold your urge for like two to three hours like the rest of us.

2. Love thy previews

Most people arrive to movies late in the sense they miss all of the previews and only use their purchased ticket to watch a movie. Previews are an awesome way to plan future movie experiences as well as provide additional enjoyment before the movie itself. Some even argue they are the best part.

1. Do not spoil it for the rest of us

This is the third and final GOLDEN rule. Absolutely do not spoil a movie plot for someone who has not scene it yet. Social media makes it even easier to do this now. I had the fifth season finale of Game of Thrones spoiled by a tweet from my timeline and it was devastating to have not had a chance to live the full experience of watching my favorite character being killed off. The only exception is if the movie (or show) has been out for a while.



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