Swaying (not just sweating) at the gym

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109 Posts
Joined May 2011
Please explain to the n00b...

Has the gentle rocking of the ship you were in ever interfered with your workout?

I'm a free weights and machines kind of person, I don't use Bosu balls... but are they used in ships? Will hilarity ensue? Pretty please?

And if the sea is nasty, will they close the gym?

But has anyone ever been affected by the rocking while at the gym? What happened? Are there specific safety measures at the gym? I suspect there isn't a squat rack, at most a smith machine, right? They wouldn't want anyone bending the bar in a ship... I think. Not that I do those... but would they allow Olympic lifting, for example?

So, in comparison to your local gym, how is the gym of a ship any different?
A2, MI
3,421 Posts
Joined May 2012
The gentle rocking hasn't affected us.

Our "routine" is generally to do the Spinning class and then do some machine weights.

however, we were in rough seas once where the spinnng class didn't agree very well with me. I was "ok" getting up, eating, walking around, etc. and starting the spinning class was ok. But, when we started doing up and down movements, that got to me pretty bad.

with the rest of the day spent sleeping, I can't really tell you if they closed the gym or not.

To calm your nerves a bit- of the +100 days we've been at sea, that was the only time we've had it that bad.

As for stuff there- I don't seem to recall seeing a lot of free weights, outside of the single hand stuff- big range of that, for sure. But not a single bar that you would do olympic movements on. Decent variety of weight machines, usually very clean. Treadmills, ellipticals, bikes are always there- some have rowing. Not being a big attendee of gyms, I could not tell you any specifics of the types or brands- sorry. (we mostly run)

They are pretty small, generally. The open area where classes are will have bosu balls and whatnot.

Figure it will be "ok to good" to maintain, but not really add to a training program.
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102,132 Posts
Joined Jul 2000
I've never had any problems with the gentle rocking of the ship impacting my workout and often when I am working out such as on the Elliptical Machine I do not even notice it.

Waterloo, ON
771 Posts
Joined Jun 2008
On our first cruise, my wife and I went to the gym on a sea day to get in a run on the treadmills. There was just enough of a swell that the ship would lurch ever so slightly at random intervals. This, in turn, caused everyone on the treadmills to suddenly stagger to one side all in unison. No harm done to anyone but rather hilarious to watch as we all struggled to keep our footing. I haven't laughed so much on a run for quite some time.
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Near Orlando but California Dreaming
14,321 Posts
Joined Sep 2002
I don't like a treadmill at home and often feel like I have sea legs when I get off, so there's no way I'd try it at sea. Yoga and weights work well for me, although I don't lift heavy and refrain from some of the more difficult poses which require significant balance--particularly of the handstand variety where a slip will plant you face first into the floor. :-0

Autocorrect responsible for most typos...
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Oakville, Ontario, Canada
1,894 Posts
Joined Mar 2010
Depends on how "stable" you are.

I never used to get bothered by movement of the ship. On our Eurodam Cruise, we encountered stormy seas on one of the smallest ships. Since that cruise, I find I am more sensitive to movement.

When we sailed Reflection in November, I had just lost 25 pounds and was committed to keeping it off. Each cruise, I pack workout wear and never make it to the gym. Vowed this cruise was going to be different. Day 1 - made it to the gym, 45 on the elliptical. I also had a smoothie from reflection spa - before my work out. On the walk back to the cabin, I felt a bit woozie. Figured I was hungry, walked back to the buffet and grabbed a light breakfast. Still felt woozie. Took a gravol and a short nap, felt much better. Day 2 was a repeat of day 1, only much worse. I took the gravol and nap before getting some food.

it hit me on day 2 that it was the movement of the ship. All the elipticals were facing out at sea. I was going up and down and watching the water move.

Day 3 - no workout - I was completely fine.

Next cruise, I will ask if an elliptical can be turned around. I think it was truly watching the movement of the water while going up and down that bothered me.

Day 4,5,6 and I just did a fast walk on deck, and I was fine.
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Wilmington, NC
748 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
I've found that I need to reduce my free weights when I'm on the ship. I don't feel the movement but Gravity is gravity and a little shift can throw off my balance and put me in a precarious position. So I lower my weights and up my reps onboard.
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washington, dc
439 Posts
Joined Feb 2003
Originally posted by Queen of Oakville
Next cruise, I will ask if an elliptical can be turned around. I think it was truly watching the movement of the water while going up and down that bothered me.

Day 4,5,6 and I just did a fast walk on deck, and I was fine.
I can run laps for miles, but 10 minutes on a treadmill on a moving ship and I'm toast.

The ships I've been on have had a nice selection of "dainty" free weights. I have no idea about the big-boy weights because I don't use them.
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52 Posts
Joined Sep 2011
You just need more awareness. Sometimes my foot comes and lands a bit more to the side than before, and I'll grab the side bars or something. Doesn't happen too often on big ships.

On some small ships there have been more bouncy bouncy. I think that treadmills pointed forward are generally more stable (at least in my mind) than those that face the side. I'd rather go forward and back than off to the side. Plus I'd rather look that way.
6,299 Posts
Joined Jan 2001
Yes, on my Breakaway cruise, Breeze and just two weeks ago on my Getaway cruise I most certainly
had side to side swaying and although I was able to get my run in, there were times I felt that I should hold the sides on the treadmill while running, even just for a moment to get my baring.
Once I was done running and used the rower, free weights or machines, I was fine.
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