Japan’s real-world One-Piece fitness gym is open, lets you pump giant manga meat

Don’t just be the king of the pirates, be the fitness king of the pirates!

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Listening to boys’ love during workout at gym causes strange problem in Japan

Seme’s confession of passion turns out to be too hot for the equipment to handle.

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New women-only gym in Tokyo offers free all-you-can-eat donuts and other sweets to members

You can skip the protein bars and snack on real desserts at this fitness center, but there’s a catch.

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Japan’s Family Mart convenience store chain adding fitness clubs to select locations

A convenient way to stay in shape.

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Japanese gamer shares images of most realistic Pokémon Go gym battle ever

Okinawan seaside becomes the perfect setting for this Lapras vs Gyarados showdown.

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Finding a half decent gym in Japan: A survival guide

Here’s a guide to finding the right gym for you in Japan, a surprisingly difficult endeavor.

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Balls Floating Atop the Jacuzzi Water Spirit and other supernatural denizens of Japanese gyms

Aside from having a way with words and a pleasant smell, it’s a job requirement at RocketNews24 that every man, woman, and child who works for us be physically fit enough to wrestle a crocodile to submission. As part of his quest to keep in fighting shape, our Japanese-language reporter Nakano regularly hits the gym, because if he doesn’t, who knows when we might decide to give his job to someone with more developed pecs.

Sometimes you find yourself running into some strange characters at the fitness center, as we documented in Nakano’s guide to the most annoying people you might meet at the gym. On occasion, though, their behavior goes so far beyond strange that it’s hard to see it as the actions of mundane human beings, and so today we’re taking a look at Nakano’s illustrated list of five people you might encounter in a Japanese gym shower room that are so weird they must be possessed by evil spirits.

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Before we even get into this, there’s something I have to say in the interest of full disclosure: I’m a bit of a gym rat and I have more than a little bit of a bone to pick with Japanese gym etiquette, so apologies if I sound a little harsh or gripe-y, and/or you feel the strong wind of me chucking dumbbells in frustration throughout this article.

Having experienced the joy and wonder of numerous American gyms – often 24 hours, never too crowded, always sprawling and well-equipped, cheap and usually never exceeding more than two elderly men gleefully prancing naked through the locker room at any one time – you can imagine the soul crushing disappointment I felt upon coming to Japan and realizing that even the best gyms routinely exceed US$150 a month to use, rarely stock all the equipment you’ll need, and are generally populated exclusively by old dudes who spend 10 minutes chatting up their buddies while sitting on the only bench in the place, and the rest of their “workout” enthusiastically blow-drying their testicles in the locker room.

The only small consolation I have is that, apparently, one of the gym-frequenting writers at Japanese sister site is similarly miffed by the myriad annoyances of Japanese gyms… and he’s even been kind enough to sit down and badly sketch out all the craziest folks who’re likely to ruin your workout:

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