Are you confused and/or shocked by that statement? Then this article is for you!
If you’re thinking about joining a gym or have recently joined a gym, you may soon notice that there are a number of terms that regular gym goers use that are quite confusing, strange or sound just plain offensive!
This article will help prepare you for gym jargon so that you know what it means before you hear it. Go prepared!
Snatch – A complicated Olympic lift that involves lifting a barbell from the ground to overhead.
Clean and Jerk – Also a complicated Olympic lift that involves lifting a weight from the ground to the shoulder position and then “Jerking” it overhead.
Warm Up – Before you start your workout you should always warm up. A warm up can consist of light cardio and active stretching.
Cool Down – A cool down involves getting your heart rate back to a normal range after your workout.
Spot – When someone asks you for a spot in the gym they are asking you to watch them while they do an exercise to make sure they don’t squash themselves. As a spotter you should help the person if they cannot get the weight back up and make sure they are using proper form.
Lift Off – A lift off is helping someone get a weight bar off the rack and into position for a lift.
Work In – If someone comes up and asks if they can work in a set, they are asking if they can share the piece of equipment you are using.
Sets – Sets are the number of rounds you are going to do of an exercise.
Reps – Reps are the number of times you are going to lift a weight in a given set.
PR – PR stands for Personal Record. This means that you lifted more weight on a certain lift or did better in a workout than you ever have before.
RX – RX means that you did a workout as prescribed as opposed to modifying it and using less weight or doing less reps or sets.
WOD – Workout of the Day.
Double Under – This is a jump roping term that refers to the rope passing under your feet twice in one jump.
Thruster – A Thruster is an exercise that involves both a front squat and a shoulder press. You start with a barbell in front of you on your shoulders and hold it there while you squat down. Stand back up and use your momentum to thrust the weight above your head and lock out your shoulders. Return the bar to your shoulders and repeat.
Quads – Quads are the upper leg muscles located in the front or your leg. The proper name for these muscles is Quadriceps.
Hamstrings – Hamstrings are the muscles of the upper leg located on the backside of the leg.
Glutes – Glutes are the muscles of your butt.
Biceps – Biceps are the muscles of the front of your upper arms.
Triceps – Triceps are the muscles of the back of your upper arms.
Traps – Properly referred to as the trapezius muscles, these are the muscles located in the center of your back that extend all the way to the top of your neck.
Lats – Your lats are the muscles of your back that are located on the upper sides of your back.
Gym Rat – People who spend a great amount of time in the gym.
Muscle Head – Someone with huge muscles.
Gains – Gains refer to the progress you achieve over time in your workouts.
Spinning – A type of stationary bicycle that has a spinning wheel on the front of it generally used during spinning classes.
Squats – a lift in which a standing weight lifter drops to a squatting position and then rises to an upright position while holding a barbell on the shoulders; also : a competitive event involving this lift. (Not to be confused with people who live somewhere, like in an abandoned building, without paying.)
Barbell and Dumbbells – These are the things you lift in the gym. Barbells are longer and are used by putting weight on both ends. Dumbbells are generally used in one hand and usually come in fixed weight increments…not to be confused with dumb people…
Now that you know a little more about the gym and the jargon used there, you should have a better idea of what to expect when joining a gym. You are also better prepared for some of the things you may hear at the gym that might otherwise be very confusing or embarrassing!
Good luck with your gym endeavors and remember these gym jargon terms when training at the gym. However, exercise caution when starting off using these terms to avoid getting overzealous and looking stupid yourself…
By Wes Young