There's a lot of kit in a CrossFit gym and it all needs treating kindly if it's going to last.
Whether you're a CrossFit old-hand or a newbie, here's a quick guide to looking after the equipment in your gym .
Never drop an empty barbell. It makes gym owners weep. You may see the professionals throwing barbells around in an Eleiko gym, with Eleiko bars; those bars cost thousands and are up to the task. Most gyms you train in will have much cheaper bars and they are not designed to withstand that kind of treatment.
Don't drop a bar with fractional plates (anything under 5kg).
Don't drop a bar with 5kg plates on - they are thin and will bend and crack.
Make sure your bumper plates match - not for OCD purposes but because they all behave differently and some are bouncier than others.
If you do drop a loaded barbell, don't be a dick about it. Do it safely and under control. You are not the only person in the gym and midway through a wod you might be less aware of what is going on and who is around you. It is completely and utterly unnecessary to throw a bar down from directly overhead. It is very bad manners not to watch where it lands and downright dangerous to let it bounce all over the place. Treat your equipment, surroundings and gym-mates with respect.
Having said all that, if it's a toss up between your safety and looking after a £200 barbell, drop the barbell!
When returning barbells to the rack, don't drop them in with a clang, replace them gently and carefully - they will last longer this way.
If you bleed on the barbells (or pullups bars) please wipe them off afterwards with the antibacterial wipes in the green bucket.
2 Kettlebells and dumbbells
Don't drop them. They damage the flooring and they are not built to withstand that kind of treatment. Moreover, they are oddly shaped and they tend to go in directions you didn't bank on, which is dangerous for people and other equipment around you.
Don't let the handle snap back into the rack at the front of the rower; position it there with care.
When moving the rower around, do it with care.
When you have finished with the rower, return the timer to it's original position and move the handle all the way to the front of the rower so the chain isn't constantly under tension, move the seat to the front and stand the rower up carefully so it doesn't hit the wall.
4 GHD and Squat Racks
If you are unsure how to adjust them, ask to be shown - a lot of equipment in the gym needs to be used in a particular way. Learn how to do it right and teach others.
5 The prowler carpet
Don't put barbells on there - especially, don't drop loaded barbells on there, it will split the carpet and become unusable.
It takes 3 hours to clean the gym floor and due to drying times this can only be done at the weekends so to keep the gym clean, please avoid splashing chalk about. You don't need as much as you think you do. You don't need chalk for burpees or handstands.... If there is a lot of chalk on your barbell after you've used it, you can give it a quick wipe down with the wipes provided.
It rains quite a lot on the UK and outside gets muddy. Please wipe your feet when you come into the gym to keep the floors as nice as possible - tell your kids to do the same!
If your kids eat in the playroom, please get them to clear up any crumbs or wrappers - we are in the countryside and mice live round these parts.....they like crumbs.....
Please get your kids to put away any toys they play with and treat the rocking horse with love - he is old and a bit saggy.
If you turn the heater on, please make sure it is switched off when you leave.
You're grown-ups....you know what to do.
10 Other people
Introduce yourself to someone you haven't met before. Remember what it felt like to be brand new. Welcome new people in and make them feel part of your community. Remember your behaviour affects those around you. You do not do CrossFit in a vacuum. If you constantly say how much you hate the workout or how hard it is or how much you don't want to do it, that has an impact on those around you as well as your own mental attitude. If you get angry and shout when something goes wrong, that has an impact on those around you as well as not being a constructive way to deal with failure.
Be kind, be supportive, be friendly, work hard and have fun but do it all really tidily.....