T Nation

Fights at the Gym


I was just wondering if anybody here has actually gotten into an actual fight/heated argument at the gym and the stories that go along with them. Plus, i'd like people's opinion on how to avoid these petty confrontations next time.

now to my story... I work out at an extremely tiny college gym , but there's a squat rack and benches so i do not mind. I've gone there for 2 years now, with no problems...but all that changed today. I was doing GVT, 5x5, supersetting Dips w/ decline tricep extensions. These two people come in, and as I leave the dip section to go to the decline bench, they instantly take over the dip section.

As i go back to the dip section , they take over the decline bench i was using. I say "are you guys going to be done soon(w/ the bench),i'm supersetting." They give me this cocky look on their faces, and say " don't care" They continue on to comment on how " this is a gym, and you can't take all the equipment." I say i'm just using two stations, and that they should simply ask.

This is when they really pissed me off by saying " if you're just going to stand here, we'll stay here all day, so fuck off.(still w/ the cocky you can't do anything about it face) So i proceeded to knock the medicine ball off the guys hand(they were doing medecine ball core work) and they both stand up and get angry, and start berating me,acting tough. The one guy even says " i oughta knock you out right here."

I just laughed at that ...i never understood people telling you they're going to punch you,i mean if you are going to kick my ass do it. They call me names, and i just stand there laughing and yelling back. I just said F off, and walked away, but i could see they wanted to get back at me. They even told the chick who works there that " that Asian kid doesn't put back his weights."(which is not true, i just refused to put the weights back from the bench which they took over...)

Now, I do not have ANY problem with people "working in" if i am using something. However, this requires the person/people to be civilized and just ask "are you done? or "can i work in with you?" Instead, these two people just interrupted my section, to take it over. In fact, i firmly believe they were bent on just pissing me off. I don't know, maybe i am wrong, but I do know my gym etiquette is better than 99% of the people that go to my gym.


Next time you tell this story, you beat the shit out of them instead of laughed at them.


With a 5lb plate...


Of course I thought that was understood.


Actually, bare hands would be better. I'd rather spend the day in jail than get charged with assault with a weapon. Just reading that story actually sort of pissed me off because it reminds me of the college gym I work at. Anyway, good job for pissing them off and not getting arrested in the process.


As soon as I saw the title of the thread I had a feeling the phrase "squat rack" would be in the text.

People in public gyms mostly have shit-etiquette. It's a part of life.


Do you think you handled the situation well? Doesn't look like it to me.


Agreed. Way to escalate it.


You're probably pretty annoying in the gym and don't bathe and the chick who works there probably told these guys she'd trade them sex if they could get you to stop coming to the gym.

I could be wrong about this, but I'm probably not.


(They continue on to comment on how " this is a gym, and you can't take all the equipment.")

I must say I agree with them on this one. Nothing aggravates me more than a douche fuck who loads up weights on two or more stations and acts like no one else is entitled to use them until he is done with all of them or "allows" others to work in.

They shouldn't have given you smart ass attitudes but they also shouldn't have to design their program around yours because you are being greedy with the equipment.

Gym courtesy goes both ways and if you aren't giving it you won't receive it.


ha, i wish i was annoying at the gym and smelled like crap, that way no one would could near me enough to take the station... either that or i'll just start putting on 10 different types of cologne.


Yes, maybe i did escalate it, but in that situation I had no other choice. What would you have done?



You really can't expect other people to wait for you while you take up multiple pieces of gym equipment. Sure that might force you to adjust your routine, but that's the price you pay when having to share the same space with other people. I'd suggest going to the gym at a time when you know you'll have the best chance not to be interrupted when your routine calls for more space, equipment, etc.


You didn't escalate it enough. Next time, throw a trident at them.



You read my mind!

Anyway, I think that was handled well - it didn't result in a fight and they probably are sitting and talking about what they "would've done" in retrospect.



Anybody work out in a gym with a basketball court in it? You'll see a lot of tough talk, but actually once in a while, you'll see two skinny dudes flailing (fighting?), it's the most hilarious shit ever. The worst thing about it, is all these altercations are usually over a foul call.


Hell yes. The B-ball court is a great place to watch tall skinny dudes go at it in between my sets. I've seen more blood on that court than the ufc.

I personally have never fought in the gym, but if someone ever catches me after I have already done an exercise or two, and the fight lasts longer than 30 seconds, I am going to be toast.


I am not sure, but knocking the medicine ball away was a mistake.


First off, share the equipment. I like to do circuit training and GVT too and try to be pro-active about sharing. If someone is looking at whatever I'm using I make a point of politely asking if they want to work in and then helping them to do so, e.g. asking what weight they want on it and setting them up for their rep. Point is that I want nothing to interfere with my training, so I seize control of it and make the situation play out like I want it. Why let there jokers take over your workout, even briefly?

Normally people (especially guys) feel more than a bit uncomfortable about being helped, so they fall all over themselves to help you and then the stage is set. Everybody helps set up for the next set, they understand you are serious about training (and expect them to be too -- that makes more than a few people quit after a set) and usually things go along swimmingly at that point.

I've always found that the best anger management is manners. But what do I know....

-- jj


I agree with texasguy1. You can't hog all the equipment, especially if this is a tiny college gym. Now they shouldn't have been assholes, but maybe you were a little cocky also when you said, "are you guys going to be done soon(w/ the bench),i'm supersetting".