Treadmill Running Etiquette In Gyms

Treadmill Running


By Simon Gould

Going to the gym to use a treadmill means you avoid all the hassle of maintaining one at home. The cost for a year membership is usually cheaper than buying one too. But unlike at home there are some rules to follow when using a treadmill in a gym. Some of these maybe posted on the gym wall and some may not. We'll go through them here.

Those rules

Don't hog the treadmills - This is especially the case during busy periods. There are usually time limits posted when there aren't enough treadmills to go round and you're not to exceed these limits. This is so that everyone can have a go. Even if there are no limits posted if people are waiting don't start a long run and hog the machine for an hour as that's a bit selfish. Try to find another time to go if you need to use the treadmill for a long period.

Wipe down the machine after use - Some gyms provide spray or wipes to help and encourage you. It's a good idea to use them and not leave all your sweat for others to encounter. If you run for a while there are many parts of the machine that will need a rub down. Especially do the console, handlebars and by the motor cover as when you run your sweat can cover some distance. Other gym members will thank you for it.

Don't save treadmills - It is really unpopular and quite selfish to claim a treadmill when you're not even using it. This may involve putting a towel over it so no one else can use it. This is similar to what people do on vacation when they put their towels on the sun beds in the morning. Even if the gym isn't too busy this is not a good idea to do.

Leave some space - This is an unwritten rule and is like invading someone's personal space. If the treadmills are very close together and there are plenty free then don't go onto a machine that is directly next to someone using one. If there are 8 treadmills and only 1 person using one then leave a machine free next to you rather than going next to someone.

Don't stare - It can be very tempting to look at the person next to you and their console to see how fast or how long they've been running. But you really shouldn't do it, you may want to strike up a conversation and have a peek when you've done this but staring at others while they're exercising should be avoided.

Exercise properly - In the gym I go to there is always someone who scrapes their feet along the belt when they walk or run. This creates a screeching noise that is really annoying to others. It's bad enough hearing some people grunting but a loud high pitched sound coming from the treadmill belt is very off putting so don't do it.


A lot of these you will do without realizing as we've all got to take care of others when using a gym. Even new starters will pick up these rules whether they're written or not and a little reminder if someone is hogging the treadmill will often work wonders. This helps to keep the exercise flow of people in good order.

If you're a member of a gym with lots of treadmills then you're in luck. Many of these rules are not needed. Time limits may not be needed as well as saving the machines. Wiping down is something you will have to do and you might need to bring a small towel in especially for that purpose. The best thing you can do is enjoy your exercising and be considerate to others.

Thinking of buying a treadmill? See my top 3 recommended treadmills for 2021

Meet The Author

Simon Gould

I'm Simon Gould. I've been around treadmills my whole life. From running on them at an early age to working in treadmill dept's of national stores. I've run outside and I've run on treadmills and I prefer running on treadmills. I still run on one nearly every day and love it.

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