How to make friends at the gym

How to make friends at the gym

Below you will find an in-depth guide to making the best of your gym visits if you are looking to use your gym time to find new friends and build new relationships.

Why you should make friends at the gym

Some may think the gym is not a good place to make new friends, but we disagree. If you are wondering why you would want to meet new friends at the gym, here are the top four reasons why you should give it a try:

  1. People at the gym often have a growth mindset and people with a growth mentality are great friends to have. While you may be looking for casual friendships at the gym, that doesn't mean they'll have to be short-term. People with a growth mentality are significantly more likely to believe that "people can always change for the better." This means that when you go into a friendship with another member of your gym with an open mind, you're more likely to help each other grow as people and, in turn, have a long-lasting relationship.
  2. You have at least one shared interest – exercising at the gym! Whether it is weight lifting, spinning classes, or just jogging on the mat, you have something in common immediately. You'll have an easy topic to fall back to and a reason to keep meeting up.
  3. Making friends at the gym is also great because it's convenient. It's something you can do during your lunch break or before/after work. It's part of your routine anyway, so why not make friends while doing something you already do?
  4. Having a gym buddy can be extremely beneficial when it comes to achieving your fitness goals. When you have someone to workout with, you're more likely to stick to your exercise routine and make it to the gym on a regular basis since you are accountable to each other. Workout partners can provide motivation and encouragement when you are feeling unmotivated or uninspired. Having someone to exercise with can make the experience more enjoyable and helps push you to work harder and reach new goals.

Don't be the weirdo

First things first, you should be respectful of others' boundaries and space. You don't want to be that annoying guy at the gym that others have to avoid. Not everyone may be comfortable with striking up a conversation or having someone approach them while they are working out. It's important to be aware of and respect these boundaries, as it can make people feel uncomfortable or even unwelcome.

Don't be too forward or pushy, and be mindful of others' body language if they want to be left alone. Be considerate of peoples' time and make sure to ask before you approach someone who has headphones on (or any other sign that they're not interested in talking).

When facing rejection, it's crucial to maintain a positive attitude and demeanor. Remember, everyone has different comfort levels with social interaction, especially in a gym setting where the primary focus is often on personal fitness goals. If someone is not interested in socializing, respect their space and privacy. It's not a reflection of your worth or likability.

Finally, it's also important to be mindful of the language you use when trying to make friends at the gym. Avoid using sexist or offensive language, and make sure to be inclusive and respectful of everyone. Showing respect for people's boundaries and choices will create a more positive and welcoming environment for everyone at the gym and make it more likely for you to make new friends.

Don't be the smelly one

Having good hygiene and smelling good is important not only for your personal well-being but also for your social life at the gym. When you take care of your personal grooming, you feel more confident and refreshed, and it makes it easier to approach others and start conversations. On the other hand, not maintaining good hygiene and smelling bad can be a major barrier to building relationships with others at the gym. It can make it harder for people to want to talk to you, or even make them avoid you. This can be easily avoided by taking a shower before going to the gym and by using deodorant or body spray to freshen up. In addition, cleaning equipment after use and keeping the locker room clean can help create a more comfortable and inviting atmosphere for everyone, making it easier for people to connect and form new friendships.

Be consistent, have a routine

Being consistent and being around at the same time is an important factor when it comes to building friendships with fellow gym-goers. When you make a habit of going to the gym at the same time each day or week, you're more likely to encounter the same people on a regular basis. This can help you to start recognizing faces and, eventually, get to know them better.

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Additionally, when you're consistently around at the same time, it gives you the opportunity to start small conversations, ask for workout advice, or even invite them to join you in a class or workout routine. By consistently being around at the same time, you're able to establish a sense of familiarity and comfort with the people you see on a regular basis. This can lead to deeper connections and friendships over time.

In addition, being consistent also demonstrates a sense of dedication and commitment to your fitness goals, making you an attractive workout partner or gym buddy. People may be more willing to connect and make friends with someone who is consistent, dedicated, and serious about their fitness journey.

Finally, it's important to remember that building friendships takes time and effort. Consistency and being around at the same time is just one aspect of building relationships at the gym. However, it can definitely help to establish a foundation for deeper connections with others in the long run. Building a friendship is not a sprint, it is more like a long and slow marathon.

Ask to jump into a set

Making new friends at the gym can also be done by jumping into a set i.e. asking to do your lifting while the other person is resting. This approach allows you to work out alongside someone and provides an opportunity to start a conversation and get to know them. It's a great way to build camaraderie and potentially form a workout partnership.

When using this approach, it's important to remember to be respectful and polite when asking to join in on their set. Make sure to ask for permission before jumping in and to be mindful of their lifting routine. Also, be sure to return the weights to their original position after you've finished your set. This shows that you respect their equipment and space.

Use compliments the right way

Using compliments at the gym can be an effective way to break the ice and start making new friends. However, it's important to use them in a natural and non-pushy way. One way to do this is to simply pay attention to others and notice when they are doing something impressive or admirable during their workout. You can then offer a genuine compliment, such as "Great form on those squats!" or "You have amazing endurance!"

Another way to use compliments is by being observant of what others are wearing or using, such as new workout clothes or a new piece of equipment, you can compliment on that. This can be a great way to start a conversation and give them a reason to feel good about themselves.

It's also important to be sincere when giving compliments and avoid overdoing it. Giving too many compliments can come across as insincere or even creepy. It's best to be natural, spontaneous and not to force compliments.

In addition, it's important to remember that compliments are not the only way to start a conversation or make friends at the gym. They can be a good tool in your arsenal, but it's also important to be open and friendly, to listen, and to show interest in others.

Finally, it's important to remember that friendships take time to develop, and using compliments is just one aspect of building relationships at the gym. However, it can be a great way to start a conversation and build a connection with others.

Do small group personal training

Signing up for small group personal training can be an excellent way to make new friends at the gym. Small group training offers a more intimate setting compared to large group classes, which can make it easier to get to know the other participants. The small group setting allows for more interaction and conversation among the members, which can be a great opportunity to make connections and friendships.

Additionally, a personal trainer can also play a role in facilitating connections and building a sense of community among the group members. They may offer tips and advice on how to work together as a team, and provide opportunities for group challenges or activities that can help bring people together.

In conclusion, small group personal training can be a great way to make new friends at the gym by providing a supportive and social environment while still getting a personalized workout experience. It's a great way to get to know some people in a small group setting and make new friends who can motivate and encourage each other throughout the fitness journey.

Remember to come early for the workout - there is a chance that others in the group come in early too, and that gives you a good chance to get to know your group mates.

Hit the gym at the right time

People may wonder what is the best time to meet people at the gym. The best time to make friends at the gym can vary depending on the gym's busiest hours, but generally, the best times to make friends at the gym are typically when it's most crowded, as this increases your chances of meeting new people and starting conversations around packed workout areas. These peak times usually are:

  1. Early Mornings: Many people hit the gym before work, making this a bustling time.
  2. Evenings After Work: This is another peak period as people come in after their workday.
  3. Weekends: Weekends can be busy with a mix of early risers and those who prefer a more relaxed schedule.

During these times, the gym is lively, and you're more likely to encounter a diverse group of individuals, offering more opportunities to make new friends. Of course, if you are on the shy side, you might find it more challenging to strike up a conversation when there are many folks around. So keeping that in mind, do what works for you.

Post-Workout Socializing

One effective way to foster connections is by choosing a gym that is community-focused and organizes social events. This creates a natural setting for members to interact and bond. Additionally, if your gym doesn't offer such events, don't hesitate to take the initiative. Proposing post-workout activities like grabbing a healthy meal, a coffee, or even organizing group outings can be an excellent way to start.

Engaging with fellow gym-goers on social media platforms is another effective strategy. Many gyms have their own Facebook groups or Instagram pages where you can connect with other members, arrange group workouts, or plan social gatherings. Furthermore, participating in group fitness classes can also lead to organic social interactions. These classes often create a sense of camaraderie, making it easier to suggest group activities afterward.

Use an app or website to find people keen to workout together

Using an app or website to find gym buddies or accountability partners can be a great way to connect with others and make friends at the gym. These platforms allow you to search for and connect with people who have similar fitness goals and interests and are also looking for workout or accountability partners. This can make it easier to find people who are a good fit for you and who you feel comfortable working out with.

One such platform is Brocnbells, a website that connects people looking for workout partners. It allows you to create a profile, search for others who are looking for gym buddies in your area and message them to set up a time to work out together. You can filter your search by location, gender, age, and workout preferences, making it easy to find people who are a good match for you.

Additionally, using an app or website like can help overcome the anxiety or shyness of approaching people at the gym. You can message people and make a connection before you meet in person, which can help to ease any nervousness or uncertainty.

In conclusion, using an app or website like Brocnbells can be a great way to make friends at the gym. It allows you to find people looking for workout partners and make connections before you meet in person. It's a great way to find people who share similar fitness goals and interests and who can help provide accountability and motivation on your fitness journey.

It can be hard to make new friends at the gym, but if you make an effort, it can happen

Making friends at the gym can be challenging, especially for those who are shy or introverted. Approaching new people and starting conversations can be nerve-wracking, and breaking the ice can be hard. Some people may prefer to work out alone, focusing on their own workout, and not be interested in making friends. Another challenge can be the feeling of competition among some gym-goers, which can make it hard to connect with others.

However, by following the tips provided in this post, such as being consistent and being around at the same time, respecting people's boundaries, using compliments, being open and friendly, and using apps like to meet new workout partners, you'll have a good chance of making high-quality friends at the gym.

It's important to remember that meeting new friends at the gym is not an overnight process. It takes time and effort. Good luck building new, lasting relationships that help you grow!