First there was road rage, then trolley rage, then parking lot rage. Now there's a new phenomenon: gym rage. And South Africans seems to be specialising in it.
It started off with a complaint in Joburg of a man shouting racist insults to a woman in a spinning class, then a Richard's Bay woman spent a night in jail after racially abusing a man who allegedly jumped the queue at the super circuit, and now a Pretoria man has allegedly spat on another man in what appears to be another racially motivated incident. Could gym-rage be on the increase?
If you're a regular gym-goer you will most likely have experienced some form of gym-rage in the form of irritation at someone who doesn't use a towel and sweats all over the equipment, or someone who 'reserves' one piece of gym equipment while working out on another.
Some nasty habits to avoid
Not a karaoke club. One can often get a bit too enthusiastic when the endorphins are pumping and the headphones are on. Just remember - not everybody is lucky enough to be wearing headphones. And there are few people who sing in showers or gyms who would be advised to leave their day-jobs.
Headphone hell. Make sure the volume on your headphones is not turned up so high that the person on the bike next to you has to share your passion for pushing pedals to The Pogues. They might actually prefer The Carpenters, and anyway this can't be good for your eardrums.
Treadmill trick. People who have towels over the settings of treadmills are immediately under suspicion. Are they trying to cover up that they're actually running very slowly? Or are they resetting the machine and going over the 20-minute time limit?
Don't be a chatterbox. People come to the gym to exercise, not to hear your life story. By all means greet other regulars, but there are few things more irritating than being on the treadmill, and having to listen to non-stop chatter from the next machine.
No one has a reservation. You cannot "reserve" equipment by placing your towel, book or disc player on it, while you finish chatting up a girl or, even worse, talking loudly on your cell phone.
Read more of the most nasty gym habits here.
Yet while irritation is a normal feeling to experience when someone interrupts your exercise session, rage is an entirely different emotion and if you feel yourself heading down this road, it's time to take a step back and re-evaluate why you are at the gym in the first place - to feel better about yourself and get fit.
What gets your blood boiling in the gym and how do you deal with it?
(Health24, March 2012)
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