Category: Health & Fitness

Five Important Life Lessons Going to the Dentist Taught Us

Sometimes, as teenagers, we might not fully grasp the importance of taking care of our teeth and visiting the dentist. For many teens, visiting the dentist can even be an overwhelming experience. Although dentists have our best interests at heart, they can be intimidating to anyone who doesn’t understand why they are there. As we grow older, we learn about the value of good dental health and regular dental checkups.

It is essential for parents to teach their children the significance of oral hygiene and to visit the dentist. To learn more about what going to the dentist has shown us, continue reading.

It’s Not As Scary As It Seems

Many children are frightened of going to the dentist. It’s not hard to see why, as dentists often seem threatening with their scary tools, gadgets, and strange noises. As we get older, we realize that for the most part, the dental office isn’t such a frightening place. They keep our mouths and teeth healthy and looking presentable, and often give us a free toothbrush at the end of our checkup.

It Is Important To Brush

The dentist teaches us from a very early age that brushing and flossing are crucial. Good oral hygiene prevents plaque, cavities, and gum disease. The less dental problems and conditions we have, the less we need to see the dentist. Kids should be taught the importance of dental hygiene to ensure that they remain healthy, as well as to prevent the need for more dental visits in the future.

Everyone Needs To Go To The Dentist

Although visiting the dentist can be intimidating, it is a part of life that everyone must participate in. Even with good oral hygiene, we still need to have our teeth cleaned, and our mouths looked over. Dental visits are necessary for everyone and prevent the occurrence of many harmful conditions.

According to ABC Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics, “our goal is to equip each child with the tools they need to maintain healthy teeth for a lifetime.”

Too Much Sugar Leads To Cavities

Everyone loves sugar. It is almost a daily part of our diet. The dentist teaches us that indulging in too much sugar can wreak havoc on our teeth. Cavities form when bacteria and sugar build up on the teeth and eventually destroy the enamel. From a very early age, kids should be taught that excessive sugar intake can lead to unhealthy teeth and gums.

Cavities Aren’t The End Of The World

Even with brushing and flossing, some of us will inevitably end up with cavities. This diagnosis can be a scary thought for a child, but parents should teach their kids that treating cavities and other ailments are not as painful as it seems. Getting a filling to prevent a cavity will usually hurt less than needing a root canal or other procedure because the cavity was not resolved. It is always best for kids to be open and honest about any dental issues they may be having so that they can receive the proper treatment.

If your child is struggling with the thought of going to the dentist, they are not alone. Teaching your kids the importance of oral health and visiting a dentist is a good way to instill life lessons about the value of a healthy mouth. Your child will eventually learn to appreciate the dentist as much as you do.

 

Personal Beauty: How to Fall in Love with How You Look

No one looks perfect all the time. Even supermodel Cindy Crawford once said, “Even I don’t wake up looking like Cindy Crawford.” If you have attributes that you don’t like, you may be able to improve them and help yourself become healthier at the same time.

Skin

Your skin is your biggest organ, and taking care of it is the first step to a beautiful you. One of the biggest mistakes people make is washing their skin too often. This dries it out, which can lead to redness, flaky skin, and other problems. To combat dryness, your skin may produce more oil, which can lead to breakouts. Unless your dermatologist tells you otherwise, there is no real reason to wash your face more than twice a day. If you have to skip one of these washes, skip the morning. You shouldn’t ever skip your nightly face washing routine. Make sure that you remove all your makeup and use a moisturizer after washing your face. Moisturizers trap the water in your skin, which makes it look and feel better.

Hair

Your hair is one of the first things people notice about you, so if you have to deal with difficult hair, you may spend a lot of time trying to get it to cooperate with you. While there are some things you can do with all types of hair, different styles and treatments can make your hair easier to work with. For example, curly hair should not be washed every day, fine hair gets weighed down by heavy moisturizers, and thin hair looks stringy if it isn’t volumized. If you have tight curls, using a hair relaxer can help keep your hair under control. Look for products for your hair type, so you get the best results. You can also talk to a stylist about getting your hair cut specifically to make your hair more manageable.

Makeup

Makeup is a great way to feel better about how you look, but you can easily make things worse. Investing in a good foundation is a great start. Cheaper foundations have a limited range of shades and can make you look like a clown. Almost all makeup stores will do a free color match for you, which will get you the right shade with the right undertones. Don’t apply too heavily; it’s bad for your skin. Only do heavy makeup on your eyes or your lips, never both. You will look like you are wearing too much makeup. Once you find a look that works for you, stick with that. You can modify it a little bit for special occasions, but having a go-to look will not only help you feel good about how you look, but it can also help you get ready quickly.

No matter what you decide to do to improve your look, remember that there is no one way that you have to look to be beautiful. As cliché as it sounds, a lot of your beauty comes from how you present yourself and how you act. Find something that you love and make it yours.

Napping Is Healthy For Teens But Why?

napping is healthy for teens

It seems teenagers feel tired almost all the time. Waking up early in the morning for school, studying all day long, doing extracurricular activities and hanging out with friends and family can wear anyone out, I know! Plus, the science of sleep (and that includes napping) says it’s entirely reasonable for the natural sleep patterns to change during adolescence, shifting towards later hours for going to bed and waking up.

Staying up late during weekdays and sleeping belated on the weekends affects your biological clock and the quality of your rest. Thus, you are prone to various sleep disorders and also depression; but the most visible and immediate effects are looking bad, feeling moody and performing poorly in school or other activities. Lack of sleep affects your ability to learn, concentrate and solve problems; it makes you more prone to acne, aggressive behavior, irritability, and anxiety. As if all of these are not enough, there’s also a high risk of becoming overweight because sleep deprivation usually leads to overeating.

So what can you do? Experts say you need 9 to 10 hours of sleep to perform at your best, but you just can’t seem to be able to get it! Luckily, there’s a trick that can help your brain and body: napping. And let me tell you why:

napping is healthy for teens

Napping means getting energy

Naps make you feel energized and ready to function properly. They improve your performances: you’ll be able to concentrate better and give your best to whatever you might be doing.

Naps restore vigilance

It’s usually in the early afternoon that you feel your vitality fading out: you get a bit sleepy and lose your focus. A quick nap will bring back your sharpness, and you’ll be amazed how much you can accomplish after only 20 – 30 minutes of good rest.

Naps improve your learning ability

Short naps (also known as “power naps”) are a common habit even at NASA. Several studies (including the one conducted by NASA) have shown that power naps improve the memory process of consolidation, which is a big help for anyone who wants to learn something new.

Napping prevents burnout

Burnout is a condition of our modern society always on the run, still trying to achieve more. It affects teenagers, in the same manner as it impacts adults. To prevent such a thing from happening to you, consider napping once, every day. It will save you from feeling frustrated and stressed.

Naps make you more productive

Maybe productivity is not the ultimate goal at this age, but it’s a means to an end. So you need to give your best to accomplish what you want, and napping can help you do this. Plus, taking a short nap in the afternoon will make you feel good, and that’s a perfect reason to make it a habit.

But here’s the trick: to be effective, the power nap shouldn’t be longer than 30 minutes. If you go over this particular time interval, you’ll wake up feeling groggy, and your performance will suffer. The experts say that the optimal nap should last precisely 26 minutes. The best time to take such a nap is during the afternoon: not too soon after you woke up, not to close to bedtime. And try to turn off electronic devices while taking a nap. Lie down on your comfortable mattress – if you don’t have one yet, visit Try Mattress’s website to find out which model suits you best – and enjoy half an hour of relaxation. Everything will seem different afterward.

The preceding was a sponsored post.

Party Foul: Why Underage Drinking Really Isn’t Cool

Parties are the ultimate high school gathering. You can hang with your friends and go crazy with little to no adult supervision. But sometimes this reduced supervision can lead to the presence of alcohol. Even though it is illegal, it might not seem like a big deal to drink, but you need to be careful. There aren’t many benefits to drinking and there are a lot of serious consequences that you will have to deal with.

Death and Injury Rates

Each year there are about 4,300 deaths associated with underage drinking. On average, approximately 2,000 teens die every year because of drunk driving. Drunk driving is not cool. Getting caught could mean some serious legal repercussions, such as jail time, heavy fines, and community service. Having a record can prevent you from getting into a good college or even finding a job.

Additionally, thousands of teens are injured each year while under the influence of alcohol and many of them report that they were assaulted by a peer who had been drinking. Alcohol poisoning can also occur when you binge drink. The effects of binge drinking range from a nasty hangover to death, so it is not something to mess around with.

Risky Behavior

Drinking lowers your inhibitions and impairs your judgment. When you are drinking, you may make stupid decisions or put yourself in situations that are not safe. You are more likely to hurt yourself or to get hurt while you are drinking. You are also more likely to be sexually assaulted. Thousands of teens report each year that they were sexually assaulted while under the influence of alcohol. Even if you are consenting, you may not use proper protection, which leaves you vulnerable to contracting an STD.

Impact on Your Brain

Did you know that underage drinking can result in changes to your brain? Your brain won’t finish developing until your mid- to late-twenties, meaning that anything that you do to your brain can have a permanent effect on your brain. Underage drinking has been shown to impact that development and the functions of the brain. The younger you are when you start drinking, the more likely you are to get addicted or to impair the development of your brain. Not only can this cause a problem for you now, but it can also make it easier to get addicted to other substances.

So before you take that first sip, consider what you are getting yourself into. Drinking can wait until you are older, and you can still have fun with your friends without getting drunk.

What Do I Do if I Get Hurt at Work?

Getting your first job is an exciting prospect. You get to earn your own money and you have more freedom then you did before. You might be prepared for various challenges, but have you thought about what you are supposed to do if you get hurt while you are working?

Inform Your Employer

If it is not a life-threatening injury, the first thing you should do is inform your supervisor. When you get hurt at work, you are eligible to have your employer pay for your medical bills, but you have to follow the proper procedures. Your supervisor will help you with any paperwork and make sure you know what you need to do.

Seek Proper Medical Treatment

Go see a doctor as soon as possible. Instead of going to your primary care physician, talk to your employer about which doctor you should go to. Your employer has insurance for worker’s injuries and if you go to a doctor outside of their network, they won’t cover your medical bills. If you are confused about this, have your parents come with you to talk to your boss. You should also keep all the documentation from the doctor about your injuries so you can file a report.

Follow the Doctor’s Orders

This may seem like common sense, but you need to make sure that you do what the doctor tells you to. If the doctor tells you not to go to work, don’t go. If they tell you not to lift heavy things, don’t. You run a huge risk of hurting yourself more severely, so be careful. You don’t want to hurt yourself more or cause yourself any more pain than you are already in.

Review Workers’ Compensation

See if your employer provides a workers’ compensation program that benefits injured workers. The information about this should be in your employee handbook. You probably aren’t eligible to collect lost wages, but if the accident was caused by negligence, you may receive some compensation. If you have more questions or can’t find the information, talk to the human resources department.

Consult a Lawyer

Hopefully, your employer is easy to work with and they are willing to pay any medical bills or provide the compensation that they are required to. However, some companies will try to get out of giving you the compensation you deserve. If you run into this problem, find a lawyer who has experience with worker’s compensation claims. They will go over your case with you and help you get the assistance that you need to pay your bills.

The likelihood of being seriously injured at your first job is pretty small. Follow safety regulations, and the chances get even smaller, but they are still there. It’s better to know what to do if you end up in this situation than to get overwhelmed by everything that happens when you are hurt.

5 Common Sense Tips to Make Your Skin Glow

Fair, healthy and glowing skin will not only enhance your appearance but also boost your self-confidence. While some people use multiple skin care products in an effort to achieve flawless skin, the process does not have to be difficult. There are simple natural tips that can help you achieve the healthy glow you desire for your skin. Developing a daily routine that will help you care for your skin will not only make your skin better but also help you lead a healthy lifestyle.

Eat a nutritious diet

Observing a nutritious diet will play an important role in helping you achieve healthy skin. Ensuring that your body is supplied with the necessary nutrients and vitamins will help to avoid digestive problems that would cause skin impurities. Some of the foods that are good for your skin include broccoli, fish, brown rice, tomato, soybeans and white meat. Developing a habit of eating healthy food will leave you with clear, spotless and glowing skin.

Avoid processed foods and, especially, refined carbohydrates. It is hard to do, as you are constantly bombarded with ads for sodas, Starbucks, candy, chops, and other snacks…but you know they are bad for you so choose healthier options when possible.

Drink plenty of water

Drinking the recommended two liters of water per day has numerous health benefits. Water will boost your immune system, ensure that your body is hydrated and get rid of any wrinkles on your skin. As a natural detoxifier, water will not only eliminate toxins in your body but also help the skin to get rid of all impurities that undermine its appearance.

Now, some people cannot drink this much water and remain comfortable. That’s okay–simply drink as much water as you can and substitute pure water for soda, coffee, energy drinks and other calorie or chemical-filled junk.

Detoxification

When toxins and waste accumulate in the body, they will not only steal the glow of your skin but will also result in blemishes. This is why you should consider natural detoxification programs as a way to make your skin glow. Skin that is free of impurities is more likely to be beautiful and glowing.

Fortunately, your body is very capable of detoxifying itself without any tricks or products. Simply eat well, drink lots of water, and get your exercise and sufficient rest and your body should detox on its own. Massages and other methods of circulating the blood, such as a sauna/sweat program can also help.

Physical activity

As just mentioned, avoiding stress and getting enough sleep will also help you to achieve and maintain beautiful skin. Taking part in yoga and meditation can help you reduce your stress levels and leave your skin healthy. Physical activities are known to increase blood circulation, a factor that will ensure that your skin is nourished with the oxygen and nutrients it needs to remain healthy. Blood circulation will also facilitate the removal of waste from skin cells.

Natural skin care products

There are a number of natural skin care products that you can use if you want to have beautiful skin. Cleansing, moisturizing, and toning products such as doTerra oil will work great on your skin.

You can make yoru skin glow with a bit of work, and testing what works for you to make your skin glow best. Consulting a dermatologist and other experts in this field will help you get even more advice on how to take care of your skin.

5 Reasons All Teenage Girls Should Take Martial Arts Classes

Are you interested in trying a workout that’s both fun and useful? As a teenager, you know you’ll be going out into the world soon. Martial arts classes can help you learn how to face an often scary world with confidence. Here are five reasons why all teenage girls should take martial arts classes.

Self-Confidence

The importance of self-confidence can never be underestimated. Confident people value themselves more and as a result, do better socially, professionally and in life in general. Self-confidence will give you the strength to stand up for yourself and others. Martial arts can help you feel strong and capable no matter what others may throw at you.

Respect

Respect is a common tenet in all forms of martial arts. Martial arts teach respect for not only yourself, but also for authority, teammates and other competitors. Many other sports pit competitors against each other, losing this element of respect. In a respectful environment, win or lose, you will always gain something positive from the experience.

Self-Defense

In an ideal world, you would never need to use you self-defense skills, but unfortunately, we don’t live in an ideal world as any criminal attorney will tell you. It’s important for teenage girls to learn to protect themselves. In a worst case scenario, your martial arts knowledge could save your life. And the best thing about martial arts in particular is that size doesn’t matter. It’s all about skill. With the right skill, you can take down an opponent twice the size of you. That’s not the case with other fighting techniques like boxing or wrestling.

Health

Several studies have shown that martial arts are beneficial to both physical and mental health. The confidence and self-respect you gain from these classes teach you to value and appreciate yourself. With the serious obesity epidemic, it’s important now to establish a healthy attitude toward the physical health of young adults as well.

Martial arts classes offer a shame-free environment suitable for all skill levels. It’s an ideal way for you to get into the habit of working out regularly. It’s also a good way to diversify your existing workout. Plus, martial arts are something you can practice your entire life.

Fun

While there are many serious reasons to get into martial arts, at the end of the day millions of people take classes because they’re fun. These classes offer a no pressure way for you to socialize with and compete against people of all ages. With every class, you will advance your skill level, and it always feels good to accomplish something.

Win a New Heart Rate Monitor Watch from Dakota Watch Company – Review

While smartwatches like the Apple Watch may be getting all the attention lately, the hefty price and complexity of these devices makes them “not ready for prime time” for most people, let alone cash-strapped teens. One feature that many of these watches carry is a heart rate monitor, a valuable tool for anyone looking for better health through exercise.

What does a heart rate monitor do? It measures how fast or slow your heart is beating. Why is this important? Because it helps you adjust your activity level to maintain your heart rate in the right range when exercising, which can be important for getting the maximum results without overdoing it. You can read more about the science behind this here.

While the Dakota Heart Rate Monitor won’t talk to you like Siri does, or tell you if you have any text messages, it does do one thing very well: measure your heart rate. We are GIVING ONE AWAY to one lucky winner…but first let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons.dakota

Operation is simple. Just wear the watch, and touch the two big sensors on the face with your index and middle fingers. Within a few seconds, your heart rate will be displayed, and you can record this information in one of 16 memory slots if you want.

We tested a review watch sent to us, and can say it works well and is accurate. While it is marketed as a heart rate monitor, we would say it is really an all-in-one sports watch. At first, the number of features and modes was a bit overwhelming, but reading the manual for a few minutes cleared everything up. Here are some of those features:

  • 12/24 hour time modes
  • Dual time (ability to quickly switch between two time zones)
  • Countdown timer
  • Stopwatch with Lap timer
  • Alarm
  • Ability to store heart rate and lap times
  • Exercise mode, which helps you calculate the cumulative calorie consumption and fat burned for workouts
  • Personalization with gender, age, weight, height, target calorie consumption, resting heart rate and upper heart rate
  • Backlight
  • Water resistant to 330 feet
  • Anti-static and shock proof 42mm case

Here are some of the cons. Its got somewhat of an 1980s-1990s styling, with some old-school LCD digits and neon accents. If you are into that retro look however, you might find this appealing. Also, the list price of $49.95, while way more affordable than any smartwatch on the market, seems a bit high for the style of this watch. But I guess if you wanted to just make a fashion statement, you probably wouldn’t be looking for a heart rate monitor, right? The last little thing is that you really need to keep your manual handy. There are lots of modes, and remembering how to operate each function takes some time–it’s not a device you just pick up and start using immediately.

Other than those minor things, we recommend this watch for anyone looking for a durable, accurate sports watch with built-in heart monitor. To find out more, visit Dakota Watch Company.

GIVEAWAY!

We are giving away one Dakota Watch Company Heart Rate Monitor!

How to enter:

1. Follow @teenswannaknow on Instagram
2. Post a pic of your favorite exercise. You can enter more than once and increase your chances of winning–each different picture counts as an entry!
3. Mention @teenswannaknow in your description and use the hashtag #TWKgiveaway in each picture posted
4. Winner will be DM’d once selected, and must reply within 48 hours with a mailing address
5. Contest open only to those residing within the United States, as we will only ship to US addresses.

We will pick one random winner from all entries received by 11:59 PM on Thursday July 2nd, 2015. SIMPLE! We’ll also follow you back if you enter and follow all the rules.

Autumn Calabrese’s Fitness Tips and 21 Day Fix Extreme – Interview with Teens Wanna Know

Teens seeking to get in shape know how tough it can be to stay committed to a program until you see results. Even if you stick with the workouts, it is easy to lose the fitness game by eating too much of the wrong types of foods, which slow your gains and can discourage even the most dedicated exercisers.

Autumn Calabrese solved this problem for countless people through her best-selling and highly effective workout/diet plan called 21 Day Fix, available through Beachbody.com. What makes the program so appealing is that it requires only 30 minutes a day of exercise for three weeks, and you get to eat so much food that you will never starve — although the diet will take some getting used to if you have never eaten a lot of fruits and veggies before or are addicted to carbs.

Fortunately, Autumn designed system of color-coded containers to measure your food and help you hit the right ratio of protein, carbs, and fats for maximum results.

On February 2, Autumn Calabrese’s latest program, 21 Day Fix Extreme is being released…and this one promises to take your fitness to the next level.

We got the chance to ask Autumn a few questions while she was on a short vacation…scroll down for the Q&A where she reveals just what she eats personally and how long her daily workouts last — prepare to be motivated!

Autumn CalabreseHello Autumn, nice to meet you. Tell us what motivated you to become involved in the world of fitness?

Fitness has always been a part of my life. I grew up dancing and went on to major in dance in college. I enjoy being active and never wanted to sit at a desk all day. I also really enjoy helping/teaching people to lead healthy lives. Fitness is a perfect fit for me.

Your 21 Day Fix program is Beachbody’s #1 selling weight-loss program to date. What has been the most satisfying part about having created such an impactful product?

Having the #1 selling weight-loss program is great, but helping people is the best part.

I have received several emails from people saying they previously had eating disorders and after doing 21 Day Fix they are no longer afraid of food. They now understand what to eat and when and feel healthy and in control.

That is an unbelievably amazing feeling!

And now you have your new product, 21 Day Fix Extreme. What are the major differences between this and the original?

21 Day Fix is a program for everyone of all fitness levels, it teaches proper portion sizes but still allows some treats and “cheats” The workouts are 30 minutes and there is a modifier so even someone who has never worked out before can keep up and have fantastic results.

21 Day Fix Extreme is taking it to the next level. The portion control is still there but the nutrition is laser focused, no more treats or “cheats.

I’ve stepped up the intensity on the workouts as well. They are still only 30 minutes and there is still a modifier to follow but this is no a program for beginners. Its dialed in and focused; its for people who like intensity — but its only 21 days. You can do anything for 21 days!

Click picture to see the product on Amazon

You are in fabulous shape. How many hours a day do you work out (be honest!)

Being honest I workout for about an hour and 15 minutes a day unless I am prepping for a fitness competition. If I’m getting ready to compete then its closer to 2 hours a day. I enjoy working out so I like to make my workouts a little longer.

I know most people don’t have that kind of time for a workout that is why I design my programs to be 30 minutes. You push for 30 minutes, get in, get out and get on with your day.

What does your diet consist of typically…and do you use the little color-colored containers yourself?

I do use the color-coded containers, not every day at every meal because I can eyeball my portions sizes pretty well but I do still use them to make sure I’m staying on track.

My diet consists of lean proteins like eggs, chicken, turkey and the occasional steak, healthy carbohydrates like steel cut oatmeal, sweet potatoes, brown rice, lots of veggies, fruit, a little healthy fat like avocado, almonds, coconut oil or peanut butter and a LOT of water.

What is the biggest fitness or nutrition challenge you have had to personally overcome, and how did you do it?

I have a bulging disk in my lower spine. It doesn’t bother me often but when it does it puts me out of commission for almost 2 weeks. I’ve learned how to workout smart and not aggravate it.

I make sure I warm up before every workout, stretch at the end of every workout, get plenty of rest and most importantly: listen to my body. If it starts to bother me I take it easy for a few days to make sure it doesn’t completely slip out of place.

Of all the people you have helped through your work, are there any stories which stand out in your mind?

There have been a lot of the last 12 years. My very best friend was once a client of mine. I started training her when she was pregnant with her second child.

There was a person in the original 21 Day Fix test group that I got to know very well. She had a very tough story of domestic abuse, I watched her get stronger both physically and emotionally through my program and ultimately change her life. She lost 100 lbs in 11 rounds of 21 Day Fix. That’s a pretty great one.

If you could travel back in time and give ONE piece of advice to your teen self, what would it be?

Just believe. Everything happens for a reason.

All of those doors that are going to slam in your face will ultimately lead you to the exact place you are supposed to be, so for now, smile and enjoy the journey.

What is coming up next for you?

There are a lot of new things in the works, I can’t talk about all of them just yet. For now my focus is the launch of 21 Day Fix Extreme. I’m so excited to give this program to people.

Anything else we should know?

I always say if its important to you you will make time, if not you will make an excuse.

Life is busy for me, I’m a single mom trying to navigate my way through this crazy, awesome new life but I’ll always make time for my son and for my health.

Could you send us a selfie of whatever you are doing right now, like hugging your pet, throwing up a peace sign, just chillaxing, whatever? We like to keep it real!

The selfie attached is me sitting working in the lobby at the Westin Snowmass, I’m here with my son Dominic to celebrate his 6th birthday. He’s in a snowboarding lesson and I’m working 🙂
Screen Shot 2015-01-23 at 1.26.34 PM
Even with little-to-no makeup and pulling mommy duty, Autumn still looks amazing!

Follow Autumn Calabrese on social media:

https://www.facebook.com/autumncalabresefitness
https://twitter.com/AutumnCalabrese
http://instagram.com/autumncalabrese
https://www.youtube.com/user/AutumnFitness

 

Teen Gym Etiquette – Do’s and Dont’s

Its the beginning of a new year, and you know what that means: NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS! Yay!

This means a lot of teens are going to start heading to the gym to work on their fitness goals. Like anywhere else, there are certain things you just don’t do when working out, which you might not be aware of. So, to help you avoid embarrasing yourself when you are “tryna get swole,” we have some tips here from Diane Gottsman, national etiquette expert and owner of The Protocol School of Texas.

ID-100103170
We tryna get swole
  1. Do dress appropriately.  Wearing the appropriate workout attire means you’ll feel your best and get a better workout. If you are wearing too baggy clothing you will be distracted by your clothes catching on a weight. Too revealing is distracting, and comes across as a bit desperate for attention. Neither are good starts to a great workout.
  2. Don’t drop the weights.  If you’re strong enough to get them over your head, you’re strong enough to get them back down to the ground in a safe location so others don’t trip over them. In other words, put away your “toys” after you play with them by re-racking the weights after using them.
  3. Don’t save a machine. If your friend is getting a drink of water, that’s one thing. But, putting your towel on the treadmill to “save” it for someone that may or may not show up is impolite. Share the equipment and allow other guests to work in with you.  If there is a time limit on a machine, get off and move on when your time is up.
  4. Do mind your own business. Giving unsolicited advice may be taken with appreciation or a grain of salt.  Unless someone is in danger of hurting himself or herself, keep your instruction and step-by-step tutorials to yourself.
  5. Don’t stare.  Overtly checking someone out is nothing short of creepy. Equally off-putting is watching someone check themselves out in the mirrors as they make their way through the gym and back to the locker room. You look the same in every mirror!
  6. Don’t sing. When listening to your favorite music with your ear buds securely in place, remember you are probably singing along at a louder decibel (or two) than you may think.
  7. Do wipe down the machine before moving on. Preferably not the same towel you use to wipe your face and body. It’s worth investing in a pack of fitness towels with a germ shield. Use the disinfectant the gym provides specifically for this purpose.
  8. Do back up. Respect other people’s personal space and take a step back while waiting for the weights or machine. If someone is stretching before a class, or has placed their mat down for yoga, move your mat over so the other person has room to move freely without hitting you in the head with their foot.
  9. Don’t use the pool as your shower. Soap and water are still your best option. And please, whatever you do, don’t forget deodorant.  It’s better to smell fresh as a daisy, rather than stale as an ashtray.  On the other hand, don’t over use the cologne or scented lotion.  Just come in smelling clean.
  10. Don’t spit in the sink. Guys…don’t even think about spitting in the shower, water fountain or sink. And, keep your gum in your mouth until you find a trash can.  The water fountain is not the place to leave it behind.
  11. Do leave your cell phone in your gym bag (safely locked up in the locker room). Don’t carry your cell phone around with you while you lift weights or put it on the side of the basketball court while you play a quick game and then complain when it turns up missing or stolen.

And, a few of Diane’s etiquette tips for the outdoor exercise enthusiast:

  1. Stay on track.  If you are using a public area to run, bike, or jog, but want to take a shortcut back, resist the urge to hop someone’s fence or bike across the golf course. Also steer clear of areas that are close to children, or even remotely populated when you feel the immediate need to relieve yourself and can’t wait another moment.

    ID-100273853
    Any kids around here? Oh, thank god….
  2. Plan for dusk and dawn.  It might be more convenient to take your daily run in the early morning or late night hours but keep in mind the limited visibility of oncoming traffic. Wear reflective clothing and use reflectors if you plan a midnight bike ride (which I advise against for safety reasons). Don’t forget to wear your bike helmet, and include a reflector or light.
  3. Obey traffic laws and be respectful of drivers and pedestrians.  Utilize all pedestrian crossings and stop at stop signs if you are on a recreational vehicle. Keep in mind that you are responsible for other people’s safety as much as they are responsible for yours. Don’t surprise a walker from behind, or expect a driver to veer off the road to accommodate you.
  4. Clean up after your pet. If your exercise routine includes a jog or walk with your dog, bring along some plastic bags for your dog’s waste.
  5. Walk single file. If you are walking with a group of people, when you see someone walking toward you, allow them to pass by doubling up or walking single file, rather than making them step off onto the grass to allow your entire group to stay together. It’s really very rude!
  6. No littering. Those plastic water bottles won’t throw themselves away and dropping one on the side of the road or in someone’s yard and committing to circle back and pick it up never happens.
  7. Dress in layers. There may be a chill in the air when you leave the house but you will quickly warm up when you start moving. Peeling layers off is better than quitting because you are too hot too soon. Guys, when you don’t have an extra layer to shed, keep your T-shirt on and remember what you look like bare-chested, carrying around that extra 30 pounds from the holidays.

Thanks Diane!

Diane specializes in executive leadership and etiquette training, with clients ranging from university students to Fortune 500 companies, and her seminars cover topics ranging from tattoos in the workplace to technology at the dinner table and the proper use of social media. Her advice is backed by a Master’s Degree in Sociology with an emphasis on adult behavior.  Visit http://dianegottsman.com/ and http://www.protocolschooloftexas.com/ for more information.