top 6 fitness instructor pet peeves.

by Janetha on January 31, 2013

in guest posts

hey! i am on the beach. while i am gone, i have a series of guest posts lined up from many of my fabulous blogging friends. enjoy!


Hey there!

My name is Annette-and I feel super lucky to be posting on Janetha’s blog. I totally love her blog! And, I feel pretty cool that I’ve actually met Janetha a few times too.


Now you know I am cool by default, yah? ;)

Anyways, while Janetha is out soaking up the sun, I’ll be here freezing my butt off.

Oh, and sharing some pet peeves I have as a fitness instructor with all of you.

You’re welcome.

{Real quick about me: I blog at & also offer services through FitnessPerks, LLC via that site–coaching, plans, analyses & more. For my ‘real’ job– I am a full-time health coach by day, and a fitness instructor by morning & evening. I am obsessed with caramel, my husband, ice cream, reading, drinking spinach smoothies from my new blendtec, swimming, laughing, Swiss chocolate, and sleeping.}

Top 6 Pet Peeves of a Fitness Instructor

As someone who looooovvves teaching fitness (I teach anywhere from 8-11 classes per week, and I freaking love it! oh and I get to eat a lot because I do. Yesssss), there are some parts that are just annoying.


I thought I’d share a few, ya know, since some of you might be instructors and some of you might go to classes.

1. When people won’t listen to the safety cues.

I teach BodyPUMP & it drives me NUTSO when I say certain cues to help people move safely & they totally ignore me. I really do want them to have a good workout and get results, please listen up!

Besides, why would we be talking otherwise?

2. When members just ‘do’ their own thing.

If you come into a group exercise class, you’d think you’d DO the class, right?!

I for reals have people who do their very own thing –on purpose– during the class–and I’m like what?!

I don’t care really, but it just is annoying & distracting. Go outside the class & do your jumping jacks there!

{This is different in Zumba–when I have new people in my class, they’re often doing their own thing, but not necessarily on purpose…. ;) }


3. The members who set up RIGHT in front of me.

It’s unsafe if people can’t see me and we’re moving heavier bars or equipment.

Just give me a bit of space, mmmkay?


{But then again, there’s the people who refuse to come even close to the front & all stand in the back. It’s okay, I was there many years ago too! hah}

4. When class members chat throughout & during the class.

I totally get talking between sets or exercises or songs, but throughout the whole class?

…..Pretty sure talking about your dinner plans or kid’s soccer game can wait just a fewwww more minutes.

And to be honest, you’re not working hard enough if you can have long conversations throughout a class. For example, when I coach GRIT, it’s so high in intensity, that hardly anyone says anything….they’re just trying to breathe & not die.


5. Leaving early or coming late.

This one drives me bonkers. I totally GET that the gym is not people’s lives, but if you’re going to commit to going to a class, try to be on time & try to stay the whole time.

Of course I understand emergencies & rare situations of needing to leave early or coming late (hello horrible weather in UT these past 2 weeks!), but when it’s a regular occurrence, that drives me bananas.

6. When people don’t wear deodorant…….

Do I need to explain this one?


But when it all comes down to it, I love what I do!!

I am pretty lucky in that I actually don’t see these things that often (except the ‘do your own thing’ <–seriously-what the?!), so I am grateful for the awesome people who come to all my classes.

And if you are newer to group exercise classes (yay!!), come a bit early & tell the instructor that you’re new –he/she should then help you with equipment & such.

NOTE: My life changed once I started going to group x classes, and then got even better once I began instructing. I am one lucky girl.


*p.s. If you’re in the SLC area, come try out some classes–just let me know (BodyPUMP, CXWORX, GRIT, or Zumba)

**And wherever you are, connect with me on FB, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest, or my blog. YAY!

Well, have a GREAT day–and thanks Janetha, for having me! <3


What are some of YOUR pet peeves if you’re a fitness instructor??

And if YOU attend classes, what are some things that YOU see in group exercise classes that drive you nuts??

What is YOUR favorite group exercise class ever??

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{ 87 comments… read them below or add one }

Caroline January 31, 2013 at 5:40 pm

One of my pet peeves when I attend a class are the people who try to show off. They draw attention to themselves and make sure everyone knows how hard they’re working. I’m not a fan.


Donna March 6, 2014 at 2:07 pm

Not sure what you mean. Are you saying that if a member is more fit than the average person they should hold back so the others don’t get threatened/jealous/intimidated? Can you be more specific?


Katie @ Talk Less, Say More January 31, 2013 at 5:41 pm

Such a fun post! I’m someone who’s relatively intimidated by group exercises classes though I do find myself interested in attending (and teaching) them. Go figure?


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 8:22 am

You should keep going for that dream!!! I was very intimidated too, but once I started going, I loved it & then, the rest is history. Yay!


Kacy January 31, 2013 at 5:57 pm

Interesting, and good to know. I have a tendency to show up late :/ I try really hard but I use public transportation and sometimes shit just happens, but I still want to get in my Body Pump or Spin class. I try not to do it if it’s more than 10 minutes late though. Also, for morning and lunch classes I often have to duck out early to keep up with my work schedule.

It annoys me when I’m new to a class and I feel like an intruder if I ask what the set up should be or where the teacher usually faces in yoga or pilates. Can’t we all be friends?


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 8:26 am

That’s really true–and good for you for recognizing when it’s probably too late and/or disturbing.

I try hard to help people who are new set up, but I could see how that’s tough to always do. group x can be intimidating for sure! hence why I was sort of laughing about some of these that I shared–I mean, it’s sort of funny right? Apparently some didn’t think so. Oh well. ;) Thanks for your comment though, It think it’s great you try hard to get there on time even if a lot of it is out of your control!


Anne @ eatcleaneatreal January 31, 2013 at 6:02 pm

Oh my gosh I hear you on people talking. I used to teach water aerobics, and the women would just jab through class, then get mad at ME when they couldn’t hear me and yell at me to speak louder. SERIOUSLY?


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 8:21 am

haha. I know, right?! :)


Michelle @ Eat Move Balance January 31, 2013 at 6:03 pm

I loved BodyPump when I had access to that class! Wish I could find it again. Great post! :)


melissa January 31, 2013 at 6:08 pm

I can only imagine what instructors see every day!

I HATE when people come late or leave early. Especially in flow or yoga when people are making noisy exits during the quiet time!


Linz @ Itz Linz January 31, 2013 at 6:17 pm

Great post, Annette!


Lindsay's List January 31, 2013 at 6:33 pm

i’m so stoked that we get to meet at Blend!! Maybe you can rub off some of those Zumba dance moves on to me!


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 8:09 am

Yay! I am excited to meet you too :)


Kristy @ Kristy's Health Revolution January 31, 2013 at 6:41 pm

All of those things annoy other class attendees too! I’m not an instructor, and I’ve complained about all those things.


Sam @ Better With Sprinkles January 31, 2013 at 6:58 pm

This is awesome Annette – I love seeing the instructor opinion! I can see why someone setting up directly in front of you would be a little unsettling…personal bubble, people. :-p


Krista January 31, 2013 at 7:08 pm

I understand the late/early thing but as a full time working Mom it’s just life…45 minutes of exercise is better than none!


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 8:10 am

That’s really true–props to you for fitting it in!

As a note, I do ‘know’ who needs to come late in my classes & they are awesome about setting up quickly & not getting in people’s way, which is super helpful to allow other people to enjoy their workout & be safe. I bet you do that too! :)


Carisse Crossland January 31, 2013 at 7:54 pm

I am an instructor as well and also teach Body Pump. I agree with all of these 100%! Too funny!!!!!


Bridget January 31, 2013 at 8:12 pm

I think you’re being way too hard on your clients. As a fitness instructor you may forget what it’s like to be unfamiliar with common exercise concepts. It’s sometimes hard for a novice to listen to every instruction and do it exactly right. They are not always intentionally ignoring your safety cues. There is a lot to absorb at one time. And for those who do their own thing for a set, it may because of injury or skill level that they feel they need to skip whatever move you’re cuing and still be able to keep their heart rate up. A good fitness instructor wouldn’t find this too distracting to ignore. Yes it sucks to come late / leave early, but at least they’re coming at all. They are paying customers and should be encouraged to fit in a workout even when crunched for time.

I agree with you on the closeness and the chatting. And I think the deodorant comment was not meant to be serious. But I think you should cut your clients some slack on the other 3.


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 8:12 am

Hey Bridget, I get what you’re saying for sure, but as sort of a bit of joking–it’s kind of funny when people totally ignore what I say. I’m not a mean or negative person, so this was actually meant to be sort of funny. I am sorry if it wasn’t taken that way, because I totally love what I do & always try to put the members first! :) thanks for your comment!


Heidi Nicole January 31, 2013 at 8:54 pm

Ahhh…I’m not a big group fitness person but I used to go to spin all the time. I absolutely HATED it when people came in and chatted the entire class. Its 5am. STFU and spin!


Madison @ Pilates Makes You Happy January 31, 2013 at 9:04 pm

Love this post! I also hate it when people chat during class! Go for coffee or something if you want to catch up…sheesh!


Leslie January 31, 2013 at 11:21 pm

I did not like this post. It seemed a little off putting that you would use a guest post to complain about what you don’t like about your job. I also find it odd that the reason given for loving your job is that it enables you to eat a lot??? The clients don’t really seem your priority and seem to impede you from “doing your own thing” . Maybe you are burned out from teaching too many classes. I usually enjoy Janetha’s guest posters and have often found new blogs that I love to read. I won’t be clicking over to yours. You did not make a good impression.


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 8:14 am

I’m not complaining–they’re observations. I love what I do! I’m sorry you didn’t like my style. Hope you have a great day!


Courtney February 1, 2013 at 12:17 am

This is one of the most negative posts I’ve read. I already don’t love group fitness classes but to hear an instructor talk that way about the people that are keeping her employed is tasteless and makes me wonder how many instructors judge this way. Why not a more encouraging post on how to be successful in a group fitness class? You’d still get your point across but wouldn’t sound so demeaning.


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 8:15 am

I’m sorry it was demeaning to you. It was meant to be sort of funny since I don’t see it all that often but I do see it, and Janetha thought it was a great idea. Sorry I offended you! Have a good day :)


Healthy Running Mom February 1, 2013 at 4:09 am

Hey Annette-
I never heard of GRIT before. Is it only offered in classes or can I purchase the dvd somewhere to do on my own?
Thanks for the help


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 8:18 am

Hey :)

GRIT is a Les Mills’ format–it’s their 30-min HIIT format & you can find out more here:

It’s only offered in select gyms right now…. but come & see me! :)


Mel February 1, 2013 at 5:22 am

I really hope that your clients don’t stumble upon this post, or your employer. This popped up in my reader this morning and I just had to comment. It’s pretty much a golden rule that you shouldn’t talk negatively about your place of employment/clients, especially on such a public forum.

If I attended your gym, I would be mortified and not even want to try any of the classes in fear of not doing something “right”. I think as a fitness instructor you should be helping people want to get active and learn the class instead of criticizing them.


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 8:18 am

Actually a bunch of people who go to my classes have told ME these things bother them. These are just sort of funny things I’ve observed as well. As a fitness instructor I always try my best to welcome everyone, but it’s sort of funny when certain people don’t listen time & time again. I’m sorry if it came off as negative. Have a good day! :)


Vanessa N February 1, 2013 at 7:15 am

Eeeek. I’m also not a fan of this post and feel downright icky reading such negativity this early in the morning. I agree with a lot of the comments above that it was probably not the best idea to take an opportunity of guest posting to criticize others. I would just like to remind you that, at one point in your life, you were starting out and trying things for the first time too – how would you have felt reading this? Would it have made you feel a bit insecure about the next class you take?


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 8:21 am

Hey Vanessa, I appreciate your feedback! It was meant to be sort of funny, since we all have quirks about jobs & things we do & I was just sharing a few I’ve seen. I’m sorry if it made you feel uncomfortable–when I brought it to Janetha with that exact fear, she thought it would be a funny/great idea too. So sorry!


Maren February 1, 2013 at 8:31 am

I am totally with you on the “chatting the entire time” thing. Drives me insane! I teach spin, a core class, and tabata. I am in the middle of my training for GRIT! (holla!) I am just practicing my video right now and I am so excited to teach it! You are right about how intense it is. WOW. I also was supposed to go to CX training next weekend, but the other two girls that I was going with backed out and it’s a 5 1/2 hour drive from where I live, plus I just did GRIT two weeks ago, so I decided that might be a little overwhelming! :) Can’t wait to go stalk your blog! haha p.s. are you coming to BLEND?! I’d love to meet you and talk all things Les Mills!


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 11:45 am

YAY!!!! Good luck on the video–I’m uploading mine today, actually. woot :) Your kind words mean a lot, it’s always a bit scary to share your thoughts & humor as a guest post…. ;) I WILL be at BLEND! yay!


Becca February 1, 2013 at 8:52 am

You know, sometimes it is a choice between not having the energy to motivate myself to exercise, so skipping the workout, or taking a class that’s a little longer than my schedule allows, and leaving a little early. You should realize that people take classes for a lot of reasons – to get more into fitness, to be part of a community, to have a constructive hour of working out, or to get motivated when motivating themselves might be hard (as in my case). You should be pleased that people want to do those things, with you nonetheless, and not be peeved that they have to leave a little early/come a little late. Very few women have a ton of time to go to the gym and are just trying to get SOMETHING in. No one’s leaving early just *because*, they all have **somewhere they need to go ASAP.**


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 11:38 am

I appreciate your comment-thanks! It’s true–for sure people only have so much time, but it is nice if they’re considerate in the way they do it. That’s all :) I should’ve said that, thanks!!


Bria @ West of Persia and Yoga With Bria February 1, 2013 at 9:11 am

Fellow instructor here. Yoga, Pilates, sometimes Body Sculpt type stuff. Oh lawdy you hit on some of my pet peeves. Another one? “Hog the Teacher” types. In other words, those who just want you ALL to themselves. Ok, on one level, it’s flattering, but on another, there are 20+ other folks in here. They matter, too. If they want so much individual attention, book a private session.

Grrr, that felt great to get out. Ha, thanks for the venue!


Bria @ West of Persia and Yoga With Bria February 1, 2013 at 11:15 am

Forgot to say: I honestly don’t mind if people roll in late and/or leave early sometimes, as long as they are polite about it. Entering and leaving quietly are key. All good…totally understand that we all have busy skeds and some movement is better than none!


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 11:46 am

that’s a really great point–I should’ve said that. Thanks :)


Cor February 1, 2013 at 9:34 am

I have to agree with some other commentors; this was so negative! I can’t really see the humor in this, it is just a list of complaints. I like what one person said, you could’ve turned this around to be “how to be successful in a fitness class”… but this was not an appetizing read at all and I would never want to look into your paying for your classes.


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 11:41 am

sorry you felt that way–this was not meant to be offensive at all. And like I said in the post, these are a few things I see very rarely, but still see–so I thought it’d be fun to share as a guest post–esp since it’s a different perspective, as Janetha isn’t an instructor. She liked the idea too. Hope you have a good day nonetheless!


steph February 1, 2013 at 10:35 am

i agree that this post is really one of the most negative ones i’ve seen lately, and i wonder who the target audience is? if it was intended to encourage people to attend group fitness classes, it seemed to fail (and certainly re-enforced fears).

it also seems pretty unprofessional – if you take your job seriously and are really motivated to help others (not just force yourself into working out a lot so you can eat a ton), some of these issues could be addressed by you in class. if these are issues for you (light-hearted or not), why not address your classes?

“hey guys, i know this class is meant to be fun, but please take my safety cues seriously. and keep the talking to a minimum!”


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 11:43 am

it was a different perspective, that’s all. it was not meant to offend or hurt anyone’s ego. especially since I said IN the post that these are things I see rarely, but wanted to share/joke along with others about. and I guess my sense of humor didn’t come across? sorry I offended you at all. guess I have to work on that humor of minre–I’ve always been a bit awkward….thanks :)


Kimberly @ Healthy Strides February 1, 2013 at 11:22 am

I have someone in my BODYPUMP class who does his own thing with abs because of a back problem. My peeve with BP is when participants ignore timing to get in more reps – it’s so not the point but it throws me off.


Cancan February 1, 2013 at 12:11 pm

exactly there are injuries that cause people to change the moves etc. If someone sets up directly in front of you, why not kindly ask them to move backa little? They may not know. Also yes people will run late and people will leave early. At this age of obesity etc. I think we should encourage any length of workout — isnt it awesome if they are there? I am just saying.
I hurt my rotator cuff during skiing over new years and I am in PT and I remind my yoga instructur every class and I think she appreciates it. Because I do need to change or limit certain moves.. Just the other perspective I suppose. :)


Cancan February 1, 2013 at 12:14 pm

I do not need a response to this comment but honestly I also thought this post was very negative. Sorry but humor did not come through at all I thought you wanted people to take your fitness class seriously but honestly many people work out to relieve stress and they may not want to take it seriously. I understand your perspective too but it is what it is. Good luck!


Amanda E. February 1, 2013 at 1:23 pm

I think you can have fun while still taking things seriously though. Sort of like going to a movie. When you go, you probably still have fun but you restrain from talking, checking your phone, etc. In a fitness class, there are certain bits of decorum you should follow just because it’s polite. If you want to go and goof off and not listen to the instructor at all, why are you paying for the class? Especially since, in some types of classes, the instructor is tasked with keeping you safe.


steph February 1, 2013 at 2:21 pm

agreed, but those are things that can be professionally addressed in a class, and not done in a negative way on a blog that (i thought) was targeted to people who attend / might attend fitness classes.

it probably would have been helpful to word this post as “6 great tips for a better group workout” — #1: hey, you showed up so you might as well listen, right? don’t talk over the instructor and this isn’t the time to have a 60 minute chat with your bestie

words are important.


Kristen@goodngoodforya February 1, 2013 at 12:36 pm

I normally wouldn’t bother commenting with a “hey- good post, made me smile” but it seems like you could use it:-) I’m not a group X instructor but you hit some things that bug me too. And it’s not generally the newbies or resolutionists but people who have been going a long time and should know better. I think instructors can tell the difference between people who are doing modifications and those who just want to be different.


Amanda E. February 1, 2013 at 1:20 pm

Agreed. That’s how I took it too. I haven’t taken a ton of fitness classes but I have taken enough that even I can see when people are just trying to make modifications for their own health/safety and when they seem to be grandstanding or whatever. I can certainly see why people would feel a bit anxious after reading this post if they were already anxious before, but I think most people are understanding and the issue isn’t “doing your own thing” or “coming in late” on its’ own, it’s how you act as you’re doing it. If you distract the whole class when you come in late, that’s an issue. If you distract the whole class while you do your own thing (making lots of noise, etc.. not just the act of doing your own thing) that’s a problem.

In fact, looking into Body Pump sounds like fun. I really like lifting weights but I had only barely started when I got pregnant and I would like to have someone around to make sure my form is good and stuff now that my son is older and I’m getting back in the swing of exercising.


Annette@FitnessPerks February 2, 2013 at 1:45 pm

bodypump is the best!! I might be biased, but ya know…. ;)


DonnaMarie January 24, 2015 at 11:18 pm

I am curious what you mean by “grandstanding”? Some of us are fitter than others…are you saying that we are supposed to go below our level to not make others feel bad? Correct me if I am wrong but why should I not go to my full capacity and waste my time because the person next to me might be upset? Am I misunderstanding you?


sherice@foodieluvsfitness February 1, 2013 at 2:12 pm

Hi Annette!
It seems to me that you need some love girl <3 Janetha's blog is my favorite. This is my personal opinion.. I think that people just viewed your blog differently than I did. I didn't think it was negative at all. You had some good light joking cues in your post..(ex.. nutso, I'm like what?! etc..) I do think that when people say things that maybe we have done, that it might hit a nerve. I don't think that you were saying you don't understand being late or leaving early. Sometimes crap happens like an accident in front of you on the road or you've got to get somewhere but really want to squeeze in that sweat sesh. And common sense is lacking in society these days.. Just sayin!! People need to lighten up and take words at face value. People seem to read a lot into what others say which I suppose is having the right to your own opinion but maybe some folks should read the Four Agreements. It changed the way I think about what people say to me and what others say in general.

Agreement #1 Be impeccable with your word
Agreement #2 Don't take anything personally
Agreement #3 Don't make assumptions
Agreement #4 Always do your best.
Really working on #2&3 has helped the way I view myself and others. Those 2 are really hard and if you think about them you will realize how often we do it!

Have an awesome day and I WILL be checking out your blog and following you an instagram.. my instagram name is foodieluvsfitness :)


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 2:44 pm

thanks girl :) I appreciate it. I love those 4 agreements–that’s very insightful, thanks for sharing!


Jennyb February 1, 2013 at 2:31 pm

as a group ex member for an average of 14 classes a week, they are probably the same peeves as i have!

As for doing their own thing – how about members getting on bikes and doing their own spin thing instead of the 2 tracks they don’t like in Body Attack! something one of my instructor friends told me that happens at another club she teaches at.


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 2:51 pm

whoa! You attend 14 classes per week!?! Impressed, girl. Nice work!!

and that hopping on the bikes?! hilarious. like really? hah.


Jennyb February 2, 2013 at 1:27 pm

Thanks. Its a good mix of cardio & strength i think, with a couple of shorter CX Worx. I beat myself up a bit sometimes because it doesn’t feel like enough and i feel i should be able to keep up with one of my friends/instructors who does 23 classes but then i seem to forget i have part time college and also work 30 hrs a week lol!

Apparently they are a strange bunch at that other club – not at all social like us – I am on the social committee and organised a party for 100 other group ex members for the 2nd xmas running in 2012.


Punky February 1, 2013 at 2:37 pm

Annette, no one thinks you meant to offend anyone by this post. But I think this is a lesson in “know your audience”. And don’t hide behind “Janetha liked it”. That doesn’t matter. Her opinion in just one. This is your content. You could’ve spun your insights as a fitness instructor in a more positive way. You didn’t need to use negativity as a way to be funny and light-hearted. There are better ways.


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 2:49 pm

I am not hiding behind ‘janetha liked it’ –I just appreciated knowing she thought it was fine/funny/a great idea for HER blog. She reviewed it before posting, that is all. :)

it is my content, and I am proud of it, thank you very much. I didn’t find it overly negative at all, and I think it’s interesting that people can be so mean online to someone they don’t even know. there are other ways to share opinions & not put down the person giving the opinion. just fyi. and if you read my blog, you’d see this is my sort of humor. sorry if it doesn’t jive with you. Hope you have a better day Punky!


Punky February 1, 2013 at 3:28 pm

None of these comments were “so mean” in my opinion. They were all giving constructive feedback, all of them polite but honest.

If you’re not open to hearing anyone’s opinion about what you could have done differently to make the content more receptive to your audience, perhaps you shouldn’t post on a public forum.


DonnaMarie January 24, 2015 at 11:28 pm

Well said.


Elizabeth M. February 1, 2013 at 2:39 pm

Annette! I live in SLC and I’ve been wanting to try Zumba, where do you teach?


Elizabeth M. February 1, 2013 at 2:42 pm

Oh and I totally used to take this spin class for a while, and there was this woman who would always come in late (like 30-40 minutes late) to the 5:30 a.m. class and would sit in a bike at the back, drink her starbucks, and just petal super slow. I wasn’t even the instructor and it drove me NUTS! I thought it was SO insulting to the teacher.


Annette@FitnessPerks February 1, 2013 at 2:50 pm

that is kinda hilarious ;) haha.

I teach in SLC–it’d be SO fun to have you!! email me at & I’ll give you exact deets –for privacy reasons. thanks!!: )


Caroline O February 1, 2013 at 6:05 pm

I loved this post!! You are funny and down to earth. It’s refreshing to hear when people don’t take themselves too seriously.


Anna G February 1, 2013 at 6:58 pm

I thought you made some great points. It’s always nice to be considerate of others, and you did a great job illuminating ways to be polite in a fitness class. You were funny and thoughtful and I really liked your post. Keep up the good work, girl!!


Alice February 1, 2013 at 7:24 pm

as an avid gym member, i can totally relate to those pet peeves. i mean who doesn’t have pet peeves? however, i do agree with the point that if i was one of your clients / member of your fitness group, i wouldn’t return because i’d be afraid of doing something wrong. i mean while we are all aware that people have pet peeves, it’s a little inappropriate to say them out loud.

but i’m sure you didn’t mean this post to come off as negative! i mean, i’ve had plenty of times where it sounded good in my head but it really wasn’t… you live and learn right? thanks for sharing anyways!

cut her some slack folks :)


Annette@FitnessPerks February 2, 2013 at 1:43 pm

thanks Alice! :)

I definitely see your point, but to be honest, I’ve laughed about these things with members IN my classes who’ve seen it too–and who’ve done some of these things too. (Which by the way, I mentioned in this post that I don’t see these things that often anyways). And hence it being funny to members in classes, that’s why I ended up writing the post–I seriously thought readers would find it funny too?

I don’t think there is anything wrong with awareness & trying to make different places we visit more fun & upbeat places. I do apologize if my humor in this all didn’t come out. I’ve never been the most hilarious person in writing. ;) I do appreciate your feedback though!!


Missy February 2, 2013 at 4:08 am

I enjoyed this post. I always wonder what the instructors are thinking….it’s good to know that they are thinking the same things I am!!

Would love to take a class from you, Annette.


Stephanie @ Wholesome By Design February 2, 2013 at 5:01 pm

I used to go to a lot of group exercise classes when I had more time and they fit into my schedule. My number one pet peeve was people coming to class drenched in strong perfume. I promise you, deodorant is enough. No need to pour cheap perfume all over yourself.


Lauren @ Oatmeal after Spinning February 3, 2013 at 12:36 pm

Annette, I hope you didn’t let people’s comments get to you. As a fellow instructor, I totally identify with all of the things you listed and have seen each and every pet peeve time and time again. And, I KNOW that you are the least negative person on the planet, and you meant for this to be light-hearted and fun.
I know that some people commented that you should cut people slack for just GETTING to the gym, or those who are just starting out, and I know very well that you weren’t talking about those people. It’s the ones that time and time again are in their own little world and have no respect for anyone else that make a class unpleasent. When a person comes into Bodypump after class has started, and walks in front of the class over and over again to set up (rather than going around the back), it causes a disruption. Or, the people that leave during the abs track and try to carry a bunch of weights back and drop them, narrowly missing hitting someone… that’s when it’s a problem. And yeah- people who “do their own thing” are VERY different than those who MODIFY based on their needs. I’ve had people come in my Spinning class and have HEADPHONES on and just spin away the whole time. YES, That is RUDE.
I enjoyed this post and was laughing along with it the whole time. Keep being the AWESOME instructor that you are- I know how much your classes love you!!


Janet February 3, 2013 at 3:52 pm

Awe, I was not offended. Respect for others is basic, yet often neglected by self- centered folk. (I call them the gum-crackers)
I thought it had a light tone, I also read your blog and have never found you negative!


Annette@FitnessPerks February 4, 2013 at 12:05 pm

Thanks Janet! :)


Bek @ Crave February 3, 2013 at 8:58 pm

Haha safety cues- what are they? Omg, having people put three risers under their steps or doing stupid stuff. It’s so unsafe. Drives me nutso. You think Les Mills puts enough time, money and research into it that people would realise they know what they are doing.

Haha when members do their own thing I will kindly ask them at the beginning or end to set up at the back so not to distract new people- often what they’re doing is unsafe and sometimes people will begin to copy.

I don’t mind SO much about leaving early or coming late. Most people let me know if they will beforehand which is really nice, and I always like it when people give a smile and wave if they do leave early.

I’d rather them come for most of it then not come at all ya know- sometimes it’s hard to be able to commit for the full hour since gym time schedules can be a bit odd.

Ps. Awesome post!


Belinda February 4, 2013 at 12:02 am

Wow, some of these comments are quite harsh! Just wanted to say, Annette, that I didn’t think this post was negative. I read your blog every day and love, love, love it – you are always positive, funny and motivating. I wish I lived in the U.S (I’m in Australia) so I could come to one of your classes! :)


Annette@FitnessPerks February 4, 2013 at 12:09 pm

thank you Belinda! I wish you lived here too & would come to my classes :) If you’re ever in SLC, let me know!!


Megan February 4, 2013 at 1:25 pm

People need to calm down about this post. I liked it Annette! It made me laugh because anyone who has attended lots of group fitness classes knows exactly what you are talking about! People should understand that you aren’t talking about everyone. Obviously people have their own personal reasons for leaving early or late, you’re talking about the people that ruin everyone else’s workouts by disrupting them in the middle of class. People need to learn to lighten up and not take everything so literally!


Annette@FitnessPerks February 5, 2013 at 2:13 pm

Thanks Megan, I appreciate that! :)


Katie February 5, 2013 at 9:59 am

Wow. It’s funny b/c some of these comments are as mean/demeaning as they are claiming the author is! I totally understand what she’s saying and it seems like it’s written as more of a “mock” post, not to be taken literally. Let’s be a little nicer here, you are entitled to your opinion but some comments here are coming off as very unkind.


Lindsay February 5, 2013 at 1:13 pm

I just re-read this post after you mentioned getting some negative comments on your own blog (I folllow both you and Janetha). Seriously, maybe it’s b/c I’m used to reading your posts, but this came across as light-hearted and funny to me. I think collectively, most folks who follow Janetha’s blog where she talks a great deal about weight-training, GPP, etc. are really into fitness and would be the type of class members that would also find this stuff annoying! Don’t let a few negative comments ruin your day. It may just be that out of context (i.e. away from your own blog where your passion and dedication to your classes is evident) the tone was misunderstood.

And girl…if I lived anywhere near you I’d come take your classes (in addition to GPP of course…ha)!


Annette@FitnessPerks February 5, 2013 at 2:14 pm

I appreciated this, Lindsay! And yes, come visit & do classes & GPP!! :) hehe


Eliza February 8, 2013 at 3:04 pm

Safe to say I won’t be reading her blog soon! So complained..yikes.


Jen February 19, 2013 at 9:58 am

I’m not new to fitness, but I am new to a few fitness classes. I actually recently started taking Zumba because I wanted to get more comfortable and confident with my body and dancing. It surely doesn’t come naturally to me. Glad to hear the instructor is likely laughing at me for “doing my own thing.” Good grief. Get over yourself, Annette.


Jane February 20, 2013 at 12:30 pm

I popped over after hearing that this post was awful, but it doesn’t bother me one bit. I can see how these things would be frustrating. I felt it came across in a lighthearted way.

It reminds me of when I watch Sex and the City, and a scene shows Carrie and her friends at yoga or aerobics or any other fitness-y class . . . and Carrie is always talking a mile a minute instead of doing the class. My first thought, each time, is “that is so rude!” ha.


Mary January 8, 2014 at 5:48 pm

I sub a mat Pilates to a regular group. A couple of them absolutely refuse to do the modification insisting they can do the full exercise. I think their pride is getting in the way. But the way they do it is so scary for me to watch! So now I will only teach the modification for those exercises, even though the rest of the class can do the full correctly. It’s kinda annoying but I don’t want those clients to hurt themselves.


DonnaMarie January 24, 2015 at 11:07 pm

I noticed you said it bothers you when someone “does their own thing” during your class. Here is an example of what I experience at most classes …the instructor and class take frequent breaks during the class. My level of cardio is very high, and I dont need breaks. If I keep stopping my heart rate drops and I am used to a full 45-60minutes of cardio without a break. So when they take rests, I do jumping jacks or something else to keep my heart rate up. I know it probably bugs people but why should I ‘water down’ my workout so someone else doesnt feel threatened? Some of us are fitter and shouldnt have to tone it down to coddle fragile egos.


Janetha January 26, 2015 at 1:42 pm

Hey, DonnaMarie! This was a guest post and so I don’t think the author will see your comment–just wanted to let you know since she wouldn’t be back here to reply! But her email is if you want to reach out to her :)


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