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How to Reduce Germs at the Gym

By Sara Butler

The gym is a great place. It's often where people find a place they're comfortable being themselves and bettering their health in the process. But the gym, simply because it's a place that inspires so much sweat, is also a place that has a lot of germs. Here are some tips you can use to ensure that you don't spread your germs or pick up anyone else's as you get your workout in.

Infections That Linger at the Gym

There are a few things that people tend to pick up in gyms. The most common include:

  • Fungal infections - Sweaty gym clothes are the perfect environment for fungi to grow out of control. Make sure when you use the showers at the gym that you wear protective shoes or flip-flops.
  • Viral infections - Illnesses that can be spread through droplets in the air or when you touch contaminated surfaces are prevalent in gyms. Just be mindful that when you touch gym equipment or when you work out next to someone, that you do take a chance of picking up a viral infection unless you take precautions.

How to Prevent Infections

There are a few hygiene tips you can put to work at the gym and outside of it to help lower your risk of infection. You should:

  • Use hand sanitizers - Most gyms have hand sanitizers on the wall to use both before and after you use a piece of workout equipment.
  • Wash your clothes after each workout - Sweaty gym clothes harbor bacteria and germs, so make sure to wash them in hot water after each workout to ensure that the germs don't linger or, worse, grow.
  • Shower - If you get really sweaty at the gym, then you should make sure to shower as soon as you can after exercise.
  • Use disinfectant wipes - Gym equipment can spread germs fast, so make sure to wipe down equipment before you use it and after you're done using it, too.
  • Dry off - Don't sit around in your sweaty gym clothes for the rest of the day. Make sure to take off your clothes and dry your skin to avoid gym-related skin infections.

If you're feeling ill, then you shouldn't go to the gym so you're not a source of infection for other people. Wait until your symptoms go away and your energy level can sustain a workout before you go back.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.

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