There are plenty of good reasons to re-rack your weights at the gym. It makes finding the equipment easier, keeps the floor free of clutter and helps prevent injury. Remember, not everyone is capable of lifting the amount of weight you can, and you could be preventing others from using equipment as well.
Dumbbells, Listen Up!
Dumbbells in the wrong slots and strewn about the gym floor are an annoyance and a safety hazard. Many of the dumbbells are black, which matches the rubber floor at most gyms. These are hard to see and pose a significant tripping hazard. Placing the weights in the wrong slots is not a safety concern; however it is a major pet peeve of gym goers.
Barbells, Back Where They Belong!
It is also important to re-rack your weights when using barbells as well. If you are strong enough to load those ten 45 lb plates onto the leg press, you are strong enough to remove them. Additionally, leaving them on the machine makes it difficult for others to use it. They will have to (if they can) remove all of the weight you left, leaving them prone to injury.
Barbell Trees, Keep Their Leaves!
We also need to consider proper re-racking of the barbells on the barbell trees. This is for both safety and etiquette purposes. While it is obvious that barbells left on the floor are a tripping hazard, the order in which you place them on the tree is a safety issue as well. The lighter barbells go in the top slots of the tree, with the heaviest ones at the bottom. Racking them in this fashion helps avoid back injuries when re-racking or removing.
In conclusion, please re-rack your weights! This poses a safety issue and is inconsiderate of others. A little bit of prevention can go a long way to making working out safer and more enjoyable for everyone.