Gym Guide – Pokémon Go

Gym Guide - Pokémon Go

Today we’re coming at you with a Gym Guide for Pokémon Go that we have come up with. We hope this helps you guys out in your quest to become a Pokemon Masters. This gym guide is for new players but also for advanced players, which can possibly learn something new. If you ever asked yourself, how to attack and defend a gym in Pokémon Go, this is the right guide for you. For more Guides about Pokémon Go, you should take a look at our Guide-Section.

When do I start with Gym Battles?

We recommend at this Gym Guide for Pokémon Go to be at least level 20 before you start doing gyms as this is where the levelling curve starts to get steeper and it become much harder to level. However if you intend to get into gym battling it’s important to start early. Make sure you hold onto your mid and low cp Pokémon as you’re levelling up. Keep your low cp ‘good’ pokemon, they’ll pay off later when you train up gyms.


To attack you want to tap the screen, the goal is to deplete the opponent’s health bar completely for all opposing Pokémon. You can long press the screen to use charge attacks, you can tell when they are ready based off the bar under your hp bar, the bar will begin glowing blue when a charge attack is ready. You can dodge by swiping left or right. To take over a gym you must deplete the prestige of a gym to 0 and then put your Pokémon in, training it up by battling against a friendly gym and increasing its prestige.


In this part of the Gym Guide for Pokémon Go we want to show you how to dodging works.

When the screen flashes yellow (as seen in picture) swipe left or right to dodge the attack (some moves don’t match their animations e.g. bubble). It is worth noting that dodging does not always completely negate damage, but reduces it by around 80%. It is important to make sure you don’t get caught in your long charge animations (most notably hyper beam takes a whole 5 seconds before you can do anything). As a general rule of thumb assume the AI charges its charge move bar about half as fast as you do assuming no dodging, (note that there is randomness involved). This means if the enemy Pokémon is using psychic (2 charges) and you are using blizzard (1 charge) by the time blizzard is charged you may want to wait for the enemy Pokémon to use its charge before you use blizzard as it is likely you will get caught in the animation.


At the beginning of a battle the opposing Pokémon will use their quick attack twice in quick succession, it may be helpful to dodge these 2 attacks if conserving health is of high priority.

Sometimes it is not worth dodging and faster to spam attack rather than to dodge to save a potential hyperbeam of damage (even if dodged).


Which Pokémon to bring to a Gym Battle

See this list for best Pokémon in general. Otherwise take into account super effective, resistances and stab. When rating how good a Pokémon is CP/Species > Type Advantage > Moves > IV.

Which Gym to take in Pokémon Go

If you want your gym to have a lifespan of more than 20 hours, we recommend in this gym guide for pokémon go, that you want to put it in a spot where there are not many people, not many spoofers, not near other gyms and preferably not accessible by car. People who see a high level gym on its own that’s hard to get to are much less likely to take that gym due to the resource investment it takes to actually take over the gym. An isolated high level gym (eg in the middle of a bush track) can often stand for weeks without any real contesting.

When to take Gyms in Pokémon Go

If you’re looking for some quick coins you want as many gyms in a close area and want to do so during off peak times, ie. weekdays during work hours, early morning, late night.


Don’t bite off more than you can chew

Especially when playing on foot and during peak hours, make sure you don’t go for too many gyms if there are many other players out and about, you may find yourself losing gyms you just took while on the way to your next one

What to deposit

Now we’ve come to the point in this gym guide for Pokémon Go, where you want to know this Pokémon you should deposit in a Gym. Generally you want to deposit your strongest pokemon with the best defending move set (this is often not the same for attacking, for example on slowbro confusion is much better than water gun for defending), to see which moves are the best for defending see this list. If you are training a gym into the higher levels (7 or above) you may want to consider laying a base Pokémon if there isn’t one already or you are unable to deposit anything meaningful. You may also want to consider adding a pokemon of a different type if there is 4 dragonites and 3 vaporeons already, variety makes your opponent’s life a bit harder.

Gyarados’ intimidate activated! Sometimes depositing high cp Pokémon with bad moves (especially dragonites) can scare lower level players into not bothering with a gym, so your 100% bite twister gyarados might not be a lost cause.


Base pokemon

Base pokemon are the pokemon at the bottom of a gym, often in higher level gyms you’ll see that the lowest pokemon is significantly weaker than the rest. This is because the pokemon is used to train against to raise the prestige of a gym in a more potion efficient manner. Beating a 2000cp arcanine with a 1000cp vaporeon will grant the same amount of prestige and xp as beating a 150 magikarp with a 75 golduck. You may also want to consider depositing a base pokemon if the lowest pokemon in the gym is a lapras/snorlax/vaporeon or something similar to help make it easier for other people.

Best Base Pokemon

The best base Pokémon are fire types as water types are generally much tankier and have type advantage, pinsirs with fury cutter, as they do negligible damage but have high cp, or high cp magikarp, as they only have access to splash and struggle (Splash does 1 damage as the damage formula is Damage = Floor ( .5 Attack / Defense x Power x STAB x Weakness ) + 1) It is noteworthy that base Pokémon are the first to go when being attacked, so you’ll be taking one for the team.

Training Gyms

When training gyms you gain more prestige based on the percentage cp difference between the 2 pokemon ranging between 100 prestige and 1000 prestige. The exact amount is given by the formula 250 * (Defender CP / Attacker CP).  Most of the time you don’t want to be killing more than one pokemon as you want to be lower cp than your opponent (taking into account moves of course), simply kill the base Pokémon and run, heal and repeat. This is why you want to keep a variety of pokemon opposed to just the strongest ones over a certain cp range. Find the lowest cp Pokémon you can beat the base with and repeat until you’re at the desired level. We recommend in this Gym Guide for Pokémon Go to generally to train your Pokémon to level 7 if you want any chance of holding the gym, especially in more populated areas.

IVs and Moves

IVs in Gym Battles

IV stands for individual value in this Gym Guide for Pokémon Go, they are a mechanic taken from mainline pokemon games but are largely simplified in PoGo. Each pokemon has 3 stats: Stamina, Defense, Attack. Each pokemon has a random number assigned to each stat between 0-15 (inclusive), the higher the better. This affects CP by about 10% at most. Some people will tell you their IV’s as a percentage, which basically means how “perfect” the pokemon is, Since the Defense and Attack stats are invisible, we cannot tell what the exact spread (with the exception of ToS breaking websites like PoGobag and Pokeadvisor) or powering up your Pokémon several times so people use a percentage instead of an estimated spread, i.e. 97.8% perfect could be 15/14/15, 15/15/14 or 14/15/15.

Determining IVs

In this Gym Guide we won’t show you how to determine IVs. To Determine IVs of your pokemon there are many calculators online/available for download for both IOS and Android. [May be taken down at some point]


Moves are more important than IVs in battles, so we make them important in this gym guide aswell. A CP1900 Gyarados with Dbreath/Hydro pump is better than a CP2000 Gyarados with Dbreath/Twister. Moves are generally what makes or breaks a Pokémon (apart from CP of course). Moves do not affect CP so it is easy to misjudge the power of a pokemon. Since the balance change, quick moves have become much closer in strength to each other. However as a general rule of thumb faster moves are better than slow moves (for attacking gyms). Defending a gym is the other way around, high base damage moves are better than low base damage moves as the AI attacks at a fixed rate. For example poliwrath with bubble is much stronger than poliwrath with mud shot for defending purposes.

Charge Moves

Charge Moves are very important in both defending and attacking for this Gym Guide, most (if not all) of the best charge moves only have 1 or 2 charges, as a general rule of thumb a high damage charge move that is affected by STAB to maximise time spent quick attacking without sacrificing damage or risking getting caught in animations during attacking. For defending moves with more charges and STAB may be better (around 2 or 3) as after the AI will use them much more frequently and are often harder to dodge. This is most notable when facing against a Dragonite with dragon claw, opposed to one with hyper-beam, Hyper beam takes a total of 5 seconds to complete its animation and is very easy to dodge, unlike dragonclaw which has a subtle animation which comes out almost instantly.

(Above information is subjective)


STAB (Same Type Attack Bonus) is an attack power bonus given when a move used by a Pokémon matches the pokemon’s type, increasing the damage by 25% (A Nidoking with Earthquake will have 125 base damage instead of the normal 100)


Unlike traditional pokemon, Super Effective and Not Very Effective are not 2x/0.5x in Pokemon Go. Pokemon Go SE and NVE multipliers are 1.25x and 0.8x respectively. For double super effective/double resistance the multipliers are 1.5625x and 0.64x respectively. A type advantage chart can be found here.

Where can I find exact move data?


How is CP calculated?

CP = (BaseAtk + IndAtk) * (BaseDef + IndDef)^0.5 * (BaseSta + IndSta)^0.5 * (ECpM)^2 / 10


Extra Tips in this Gym Guide

  • You can conserve potions by using revives and just battling at half hp
  • You can conserve revives by powering up your pokemon, restoring them to however much hp they gain from level up (as long as it isn’t 0)
  • Charge moves are often given away by a pause in the opponent’s attacking pattern
  • You may want to name your pokemon with a symbol (‘`~’, ‘^’, ‘<’ etc.) to make them appear at the top of the list when sorting by A-Z if you want to use them to battle.
    • Or just favorite


  • ‘Error’ is caused by bad code in the game preventing multiple users from entering the gym simultaneously
  • Double tapping the go button when starting a battle freezes the game
  • Entering a battle while someone has already started will cause your pokemon to take huge amounts of damage depending on how late you joined
    • Start battling at same time if possible
  • Some of the time when pokemon reach 1hp they do not die, this can be caused by damage from the previous pokemon only registering visually, and not to the server, keep attacking
    • Can also be caused by server lag
    • Can also occur when dodging, HP will be refunded when the next pokemon comes in or battle finishes.

Gym Guide Summary

  • Keep a variety of Pokemon
  • Dodge when screen flashes yellow
  • this list for what Pokémon to use
  • Take isolated gyms during off-peak times
  • Deposit pokemon with moves that have high base cp or easy for friendly trainers to kill
  • Moves > IVs
  • Here for move data

Thanks to user ‘pengu213456’ for help creating this guide.

We hope this Gym Guide for Pokémon Go was helpful for you. If you have any questions or feedback, please feel free to leave a comment.

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