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Social Media – And Workout Etiquette

Social Media – And Workout Etiquette

I experienced a few workout etiquette “faux pas” this last weekend, and of course that prompted a blog topic on how we could relate these missteps to our social media adventures.

1. Clean Up After Yourself

I commend you on an excellent workout; however, it isn’t required for you to leave the by-products behind when you move on to the next piece of equipment! Wipe down the equipment with a towel or spray w/disinfectant. You never know if the next guy might be a germaphobe, and you want to put their mind at ease. I’m not a germaphobe, but I’m not a fan of slimy either.

In the case of social media, send personal messages (applies to Twitter/Facebook/LinkedIn) to people who chose to follow you. In regards to discussion threads and blog comments, close the loop with a reply as a form of courtesy if not to add more information germane to the topic.  Don’t leave the discussion hanging! And if you accidentally over-step your bounds and realize it (or get called on your “junk”), own up to your trespasses and make amends.

2. Share the Equipment

I tend towards a circuit training approach, and I hoped to get some bench press reps in during my workout. I watched while a guy kinda sat there listening to his iPod.  I did a few other stations, and came back as he was taking weight off the bar. I asked if I could “work in”, and he said “nah, I gotta do incline presses…but only 3 sets”. OK, this one chapped me a bit (and was the true prompter for this blog). I understand that newbies may not understand the proper response, but the response I am accustomed to goes more like “sure, work-in…do you need a spotter”.  It’s part of building that workout camaraderie and accountability.

In the case of social media, we share the network, connections, links, etc.

  • Don’t be “That Guy” that dominates or derails a discussion (or becomes abusive).
  • Don’t fill your followers’ timelines with the latest “how to make money” deals.
  • Do share links to great articles/blogs/resources.
  • Do retweet/like/comment on good tweets, Facebook/LinkedIn statuses and blog posts. You are helping your tribe on both sides of the equation (the ones delivering the content and the ones who might really need to see that content).

3. Limit Phone/Text Conversations

I love my technology, and I do carry an iPhone during my workouts.  It provides my music, tracks my heart rate, and I’m available to my wonderful wife and daughters if they need anything (or gotta share that special “LOL” moment). However, do not decide to turn a piece of fitness equipment into your Lazy Boy while you play with your phone/iPod.  Oh, and look up while you are walking and thumb-typing.  Bumping face first into sweaty people is generally not a comfortable scenario. The 2:17 moment in this video is classic!

In social media, use technologies like HootSuite to your advantage (which are great for cross-posting as well as monitoring lists, Facebook news feeds and LinkedIn status updates) but limit direct messages that are auto-generated.  I’m even OK with receiving auto-DMs as a courtesy from people with thousands of followers…but don’t try to sell me with the first DM! Remember, the new social media is about the relationship and building trust.  If your tribe becomes your consumers, it will be based upon the principle of “People do not care how much you know until they know how much you care.” - John Maxwell. We are no longer in the age of interruptive marketing.

What’s your funniest workout etiquette story?  What’s your biggest social media etiquette “pet peeve”?

Photo Credit: A111028_jb_weights 013 by Joint Base Lewis McChord, on Flickr

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Brian Vickery

I love my Vickery Girls - and grandsons! My career has blessed me to the point I was able to start a new consultancy in 2018: Analytic Integrity. I look to provide analytic experience, and business integrity, to an Analytics world while helping data-driven organizations mature. I enjoy teaching and coaching, watching football and basketball, and playing tennis. I graduated UT-Austin.

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  1. Wow that was one disgusting video…

    I remember one of the first times I went to the gym… we didn’t have a weight room in our high school and I never really got exposed to going to the gym until just after collage and I started using the treadmill. Well after I was done and I left the machine sort of like your slug in the picture up above. Luckily to my horror at the time someone was nice about explaining what was proper and I have been good since. I love that so many places provide the germ killing wipes now. That is why in my Martial Arts studio we have the alcohol pump.

    • Always good to have those patient instructors…like what you can find in abundance at your White Tiger Martial Arts studio ;)