10 Rules of Gym Etiquette People Are Constantly Ignoring

Disrespecting the Child Care Protocol
Tempting as it might be to leave your kids at the gym day care while you run a few errands, that's not fair to the staff or to other gymgoers. Ariel Skelley/Blend Images/Getty Images

I get it, really I do. You want to work out, but your child is sick. Again. It disrupts your routine and keeps you from getting the best possible results, which is seriously deflating. However, it's no excuse for taking sickies to the gym day care where they will (a) be miserable and (b) get everyone else sick. In fact, I rarely take my kids to the nursery there because every time I do, I can set my watch by them coming down with a stomach bug. Instead, snuggle them at home and try to get a spouse, parent or other helper to pitch in so you can get your cardio on.

To that end, adults need to be mindful of their own germs, too. The gym is the ideal breeding ground for bacteria and viruses, thanks to its warm, moist environment. Please refrain from going in and touching everything with your germy, grubby hands. If you're only mildly ill, be mindful of your impact. "People who don't bother to cover their coughs, sneezes and wheezes on machines in my general area gross me out," says Stacia Hernstrom, of Austin, Texas. "We're all breathing hard ...How am I NOT going to get their germs? Cover, people!" And wipe down your equipment, extra well.

The gym day care should also be used only by people who are actually using the gym. Former gym employee Jenny Dell of Gainesville, Georgia, has seen this rule abused many times over. "People used to bring their kids to the gym child care and then go next door to grocery shop," she recalls. Since some gym child care facilities have a "max out" number of kids they can take, this practice is rude not only to the employees who are unnecessarily saddled with extra kids, but also to fellow gym-goers who have to wait for the crowd to thin out. frown emoticon