3 Tips to Making Friends at Your New Gym

Everything’s always better with great company. The same is true at the gym. However, the gym is a place of hard work, determination, pain and sweat. Who has time to make friends? If you have time to squat, you certainly have time to exchange notes, small talk and humor. Here are your top three tips for broaching the gym social scene and making new friends.

1. Interact As Much As Possible With the Staff and Guests

If the gym is a party, the gym staff are the hosts. Chat up the manager, supervisors, workers, coaches and trainers — within reason. They are precisely the people who are most likely to introduce you to other members, including those you want to befriend.

Sign up for classes, and jump on the opportunity to enjoy free sessions or consultations with personal trainers. Classes, such as spin classes, boot camps and other group activities, automatically build camaraderie.

Classes put you in close proximity with other members at the same time and on a consistent basis. Familiarity and interpersonal comfort inevitably deepen as you get to know your fellow boot camp mates.

If classes and boot camps aren’t your thing, be sure to find your optimal workout time; work out at that same time regularly. You’ll immediately become familiar with everyone else on the same schedule. As others become accustomed to your presence and your obvious dedication, and vice versa, striking up conversations gets easier.

2. Respect Gym Etiquette

Brush up on gym etiquette if you haven’t already. The subject is too lengthy for a few paragraphs, but several key rules are worth pointing out. Don’t be that person who immediately turns people off with bad manners and a totally self-absorbed attitude.

Wipe down equipment when you’re done with it. Try not to grunt, hiss and groan like some uber muscle guy training for the Olympia title. Do stay on top of your personal hygiene before and after your beastly lifting sessions.

Smile and be respectful to other members and staff. Don’t ogle. Steer clear of direct compliments. Rather, if you life someone’s shirt or sneakers, ask where they purchased the items or about any significance (like the significance of a commemorative marathon tee), which automatically implies innocent, respectful admiration.

3. Keep Your Advice To Yourself

Don’t walk around offering unsolicited fitness tips and diet advice. Wait for someone to ask for your advice or your opinion. Be brief and clear as a bell, and offer any product information or resources that you believe are helpful.

Making friends at the gym is simpler than it sounds. Keep your body language open and accessible, be conscientious at all times, join group activities, interact with staff and respect gym etiquette. With these three basic yet effective tips, you’re sure to meet new weekend warrior buddies in no time.

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