T Nation

Fights In the Gym?

Can you share that one time when someone messed with you or something happened (funny, strange,fight etc)in the gym and it really drived you crazy? How did you react?

The other day an old (think pre-boomer) white lady approached me, a younger person of color, as I was resting between FST-7 sets on the pec dec looked me in the eye and said, “stop chewing your gum and get to work!”

Mind you this lady must have been old enough to live through segregation, Jim Crowe, the lynching of Emmitt Till, the Civil Rights Movement, the assassination of MLK and Malcolm X, and when it was literally illegal to be black in Oregon (my home state). While she didn’t straight up call me the n-word; her comment was most definitely racially charged.

I nervously laughed it off, but was so incensed that I ended my workout early and talked privately with the gym manager, also a person of color and with whom I have a great rapport, about the incident. He was upset that something like that would happen in his gym and validated my feelings.

I’m not a confrontational person by nature; but am more than willing to let my feelings known to the appropriate persons.

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Though I don’t recall details, an old gym I went to in Queens, NY, in the late 90’s to early 2000’s, was filled with “old New York” goombas. (Two other TN posters used to go there too.) A few times I’d be going about my workout or talking to someone, and poof, a fight broke out. Highly nerve wracking experiences. Seemingly every other guy in Northeastern Queens walked around with a chip on his shoulder back then.

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People had fights pretty much everyday at my old gym.

But it was a boxing gym, so it didn’t seem strange at the time.

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If she meant that in this way then it’s so ugly and unacceptable, totally with you in this.
But maybe she said it for the exercise?
I was just resting between sets in leg press when an old man came across and out of nowhere said to me “are you still sitting”? :rofl: white in a country that 90% are whites here so I think he just wanted to show that the old generation is better than the new etc etc so maybe your incident was just a misunderstanding…
:confused:
Try not to be bothered by these comments, and personally I think it’s a better idea to confront sometimes people than just keep it inside you and think of it…

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Personal experience though??

Oh yeah, I fought too on occasion.

Hahahahha maybe they were on a cycle (nothing bad about it just nerves tent to strike hard in these cases🤣)

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Hahahaha

Many were. Part of the old NYC and “Strong Island” tough-guy starter pack was roids and clenbuterol, along with tight tank tops, Kawasaki motorcycles (preferably but unnecessarily parked on the sidewalk in front of the gym to let everyone on the treadmills in the front of the gym know about them), spiked hair, tattoos, tweezed eyebrows, and leathery skin.

Google or Search on You Tube “Sound Factory NYC” and “Neptune’s Beach Club Hamptons” for nostalgia. :grinning:

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Awesome visual. I used to train at Greg Tuck’s Ultimate Gym in the 90’s. Right outside St Louis. Full of world class powerlifters and rough bastards. I was 16 at the time. Too bad I never got to see Jay or Vai slap some phone zombie douche in the mouth and throw them out.

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Hahahaha epic moments for real :rofl:

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I worked at a commercial gym in the DC area before I really got into lifting. One of my clients, a cute Brazilian lady, got into a physical altercation with a guy who he believed had stolen her smith machine (he didn’t realize he did). Managers told me she had to be kicked out, and her membership canceled. I don’t know the details of what happened.

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@SOUL_FIGHTER
Why kicking out a person for this reason!? Seems a little overreacting to me…

Kicking out a person for a physical altercation is a pretty standard course of action, assuming the police don’t get involved.

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I think it was a very fair action from the gym. It cost me a client though.

@SOUL_FIGHTER
Hahahaha well you are a fair person and you give to Caesar what is Caesar’s🤣
Oh you mean they had physical contact?
Still it’s between the two of them in my opinion, at least that’s what in my gym happens too lol whatever occurs,trainers dont take sides etc ofc I’m not talking about hardcore situations :rofl:

Never really a fight but when I was younger I had experience with a comically strange gym bully.

Fella was probably in his early-mid sixties. Looked kinda like a humanoid turtle, always rocking the grey sweatpants, white v-neck T, lifting belt and gloves at all times look. Little overweight but not the worst shape a guy his age could be in.

Anyway, he decided to bring it upon himself to “train” the younger guys in the gym in the art of combat and self defense. There were the gran claims of experiences from years past, but certainly a fair understanding of the basics of fighting. As these things go, at first it was no big deal, just some innocent gym shit with someone with experience to share. As we got more familiar, it got more and more lame.

Dude would interrupt us mid workout, sometimes mid set, for a quick shadow boxing session or to escape some kind of hold. Then he’d regale us with inappropriate tales of his youth. Locker room talk, but on the gym floor while people are trying to get shit done. To say the dude did not pick up on obvious cues that conversations were over, like walking over to a rack and beginning a set seems unnecessary at this point. I gotta say, for an older fella he had some pretty quick hands, at least against a real half hearted, cringy attempt at shadow boxing. The shadow part eventually dropped and he’d land a little tap.

I think this happened with like 5 or 6 of the young dudes, all like 16-18 years old. I never got hit thankfully, it was already tough enough not to belt this dude in the face.

The owner of the gym eventually kicked him out. We probably could have made it happen a lot sooner if any of us brought it up, I think it was always just more of an inconvenience than anything more concerning, but it’s funny now to think back to it. I can’t stress enough how much this dude looked like human Franklin.

I think it was just her pushing the guy, but enough to warrant the gym to remove her.

My gym at the time was a typical corporate commercial gym, but it was in an affluent DC area neighborhood and lots of the people were lawyers and politicians. I’m sure the management didnt want to take any changes, and with behavior like that she was certainly a liability

While I never experienced much in my short venture of public gyms, I just remember there was this… very colorful individual. He was about 5’ even, 35-40ish entire body was perfectly shaven… and he would get incredibly hyped everytime he worked out. Which I’m not totally unconvinced he lived there, considering I saw him literally everytime I went. But he would just come in, verbally shouting “rack rack city bitch” at increasingly higher volumes as his workout went on. It caused a lot of waves obviously, but he was built like the worlds smallest brick shit house, and had enough energy to disperse a nuclear reactor, so no one ever got to throwing hands with him. lots of general confrontation though.

As far as physical confrontation, there was a lot in my high school gym. My coach was pretty accommodating and would let us wrestle it out until someone inevitably smashed their head on a bench, then he’d break it up. That man saved more slugfests than he knows. 9/10 times we would all shake hands and be on good terms by the end of the period.