T Nation

Well, It Finally Happened....


This is sooo cliche I almost feel bad posting it but I have finally been the victim of "you set the weight down too hard when you deadlift" at a commerical gym.

I recently moved so no longer have the space for the gym I used to have (very complete. RH, GHR, power rack, DL platform, specialty bars, blah, blah, blah)

I joined an LA Fitness that is less than a mile away because they have round plates and I can actually pull. (hex plates suck)

Everything was going fine until today. Right now I am warming up by working up to a 3X on front squats (add 5#'s every week) and then go right to pulls. The FS's were fast and easy. I was feeling good.

135, 225, 315, doing sets of eight right now for work capacity so loaded bar to 380 (mid way through a cycle based on bracket setting so today was 380, 425, 380) and when I started to pull my belt for the first set I see this spiky haired douche bag sliding my way.

He is a newer trainer and he says to me, "you can't deadlift here."

I said, "Huh? When I joined I told the manager what I would be doing and he said it would be fine. I'm not even training that heavy right now so if you guys have a problem now you are really gonna be pissed in a month or two."

He gives me the old, "if you're strong enough to lift it you should be strong enough to set it down gently."

I said to him, "Do you even deadlift?" To which he replied, "yes I do but I don't slam the weight down." I was literally speechless.

This is a longer story than I care to get into at this point because I ended up confronting the manager and telling spike boy to get lost while I talked to him, the manager sided with me but it doesn't really matter because the die has been set and I am pissed. WTF?

I wasn't even training that heavy and it's not like I drop the bar or try to act like Barney Badass slamming weights around and strutting with invisilats.

Holy shit do I miss my gym. This is a first for me and I can't even comprehend WTF this guy is talking about. Really?!? Where do these guys come from?

I know, I know, that's what I get for training at LA Fitness but JC, I see such stupidity every day, most of these guys don't even rack their weights when finished, yell and scream with 200#'s on the bar, chuck dumbbells after doing seated curls....you know the deal.

Rude fuggin awakening. I'm not in Kansas anymore.


I joined a commercial gym for the first time in a few years when I moved this past August. Took me until mid January to get kicked out for deadlifting and "making up exercises". Apparently these things are against imaginary rules that must be strictly enforced, and the rules that are clearly posted all over the gym are just up for decoration.

Sounds like your interaction with the staff was a lot more civil than mine.


The manager sided with you- what's the big deal. You've basically gotten confirmation that you can put the weight down as loud as you fucking want to. Next time you DL find that trainer and sincerely ask him if he's up for doing some pulls with you. Maybe he'll learn that heavy weight makes noise and you'll calm down. Seriously- you won the "argument" and you're pissed? Come on dude. Deadlifting gets the testosterone flowing like a beast, whining turns the estrogen faucet on full blast.


Ya know, I'm old. Just ask my buddy Stronghold. I should have been doing concentric only front squats and all would be well.

I literally don't have the energy for this BS and will go to a gym a little further away to pull and just deal with it.

How the hell can you build intensity to get shit done when you know there are a couple little fucksticks hiding in the shadows waiting to complain.

I will still squat and bench there and torment that little fucker. He will be gone in due time and I will still be doing what I have always done.

Fuck his little spike haired skinny ass. He can continue to make a mediocre living teaching fat chicks how to lose 10#'s and I will keep getting stronger and earn more in a month than he makes in a year.


Yeah, but where are the videos?!


I'm curious what exercises you made up


Squats. Because I took a barbell out of a bench and put it in the empty squat rack.



Exactly. Same guy flipped out on me for pulling several months ago and, no lie, had a Vietnam flashback. Needless to say, BG and I lift at a new gym now- one that apparently gets a lot of business from people this guy has run off with similar idiocy.


Ummm, you never provided adequate instruction.

The old dog, new tricks thing ya know.


No videos = it never happened.



Copy his hairstyle and he will accept you.


Try stalking the douchebag trainer. Tell him you're gay and like to go on a date with him. Everytime you see him, tell him how sexy he looks today and how much you'd like to make out with him.

Chance is that he will avoid you like the plague. Only problem is if he is in fact gay, then you might have created another bigger problem than you already had.

Or send anonymous complaints to the gym telling the manager that this doucebag trainer is harassing female members.

Everything is allowed in love and war. Training is love, douchebag trainer is war.



Yes this happened to me, I was in this gym where and old man came and told me that I couldn't drop the weight and deadlifts were not allowed, I wasn't dropping the weight intentionally but it's hard to control the bar on the weight down, then I couldn't concentrate on the following sets since he was staring at me.

I will never go to that gym again, I'm going to another gym where chalk is allowed.


Like I said, this is a first for me and I just don't understand where these people come from. How can you spend any time in a gym and have shit like this come out of your mouth?

Although I have read about this on the internet, I was literally speechless and completely unprepared for the conversation when it came my way.

I was brought up on gyms where if you acted like a douchebag (abused equipment, made a spectacle of yourself and stalked around with invisilats, didn't clean up after yourself or were just being a ridiculous asshole yelling and screaming), you were as likely to get your ass physically thrown out and maybe thumped depending on how you acted, as you were to have your dues refunded to you on the spot and told to never come back. It just depended on how the owner of the gym felt that day and I have seen several fancy boys get thrown out ass over tea kettle.

However, a cloud of chalk and bars hitting the floor were expected and encouraged. It was what you did.

Fast forward and I am being told I can't deadlift by a 20 something that I am sure fancies himself some kind of personal trainer who is knowledgeable. He actually looks like he trains compared to some of his colleagues, so you just have to wonder what in the hell his point of reference is.

The thing I wonder is will he look back on this in a few years and realize what an idiot he was to even formulate a thought like that in his head, or will he just keep on charging down the estrogen highway?

I already figured out what I am going to do. I go in Monday to do pull-ups, etc. If he is sitting at his desk in the little trainer estrogen pit, while walking past him I am going to crouch down on my tippy toes like a cartoon character trying to sneak up on someone and put my finger across my mouth in the 'shhhhhhhhhhh' position.

That ought to be entertaining for all.


Too much gray on the temples. That's why I keep it short.

The morning you wake up with bed head, it's time to get the clippers out.

That's kind of my guage.


Same exact thing happened to me when my gym closed b/c of a tornado warning a couple years ago, so I went a county over to another gym with a buddy. I had the same conversation with the fella working there in the fitness center.
Him:"You need to stop slamming the weight down."
Me:"Well sir, I'm doing deadlifts? I don't understand?"
Him:"I know that, but you need to control the weight when you bring it down."
Me:"BUT I AM DOING DEADLIFTS and I don't plan on walking out of here with an injured back today."
Him:"Listen that weight your lifting is nothing, I've lifted far more than that-- so I am not new to this, okay?"

At that point it took every ounce out of me to just turn my shoulder and do one more set dropping the weight out of my hands from the top position :slightly_smiling: Last time I was ever there obviously.


This is one reason why i am willing to drive a little out my way for a gym where nobody gives a fuck (AKA a normal gym atmosphere). I do understand why they wouldn't want people chucking DB's, those things can break easy if you throw (not drop) them. At my gym, they have a big sign reading please don't drop weights, but everybody does, which means the staff and manager are cool in my book.


I see two solutions.

1.) New Gym ( this is what I would do )

2.) Stop caring what some tool who has no idea what he is doing says to you and pull whatever you want.


As satisfying as this is, this kind of behavior totally validates these policies that these gyms have. They're now able to say "Yeah, the last guy that deadlifted here was an asshole and dropped the bar from the top position, so now we don't allow deadlifts"

I built myself a home gym so I could stop dealing with this insanity, but when I train at a public gym I try to be an ambassador for heavy lifters. I loan out my gear, smile at people, and try to be friendly, so that these gyms have a positive impression of guys who deadlift. The last thing I wanna do is be the asshole they already think I am.

I definitely understand the frustration, and I've been there myself (it was actually the same situation as the TC which led me to a garage gym), but sinking down to the level of these mutants just harms us all.