Inquiring Minds

I don’t mind when people approach me with questions between sets. Give people credit for recognizing excellence and caring enough to learn more. Lately, I’ve been drawing a lot of attention with my Manta Ray, and folks wanting to know if it makes squats easier. Yes it does, since the device neutralizes problems caused by the typical bent and rusty barbell. However, with the bar placed higher on your traps, you’ll work harder as you’re forced into better, upright form.

When it comes to strange questions, I’d have to give the gold medal to a personal trainer who once sought me out. With her client in tow, this trainer inquired about what exercise I had been doing. It was that newfangled motion called deadlifts.

Irrespective of the query, I draw the line when someone wants to chat mid-exercise. Today, I was grinding away on the StairMaster, with my headphones drowning out the pain and my sweat streaming down the handrails. Desperate for my attention, a woman began knocking hard on the base of my machine. Obviously the gym must be on fire. I couldn’t really hear what this woman was saying, but the upshot was that she wanted to commend me on my workout intensity. Ironic that she didn’t see herself as an impediment towards that goal.

I intended to discount this last intrusion as just another example of poor gym etiquette, but then I had an epiphany. If I had witnessed something in the gym as unusual as a person training hard, wouldn’t I also seek out the nearest member to gush about it?


As a footnote, I’d add that violations of gym etiquette aren’t limited to the gym. I was in the middle of a jog once when a car rolled up next to me and began matching my brisk 8-minute mile pace. The driver lowered her window and shouted out a question about directions.

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  1. The headphones usually work pretty well, but I guess you’ll have to ramp it up a bit now and start singing really loud. Then people will think you’re crazy and won’t want to come near you. 😉

  2. I always give directions to people like that, even though I don’t know the way, or my best is to tell them they are still on planet Earth.

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