Some of these factors lurk hidden in places that you might not ever suspect, but with the right amount of knowledge and information, you can protect yourself from these unhealthy dangers and still enjoy your regular workout at the gym.
Where You Might Not Expect
Sure, you can get hurt at the gym just by using equipment incorrectly, but one of the biggest perpetrators of gym-related injuries actually has to do with infections and unsterile equipment.
Although it’s the staff’s responsibility to take care of gym equipment and ensure that it’s safe to use, many staff members neglect this duty so you have to take responsibility for yourself. Some of the areas that you might not expect may be the dirtiest ones at the gym, including:
1. Showers / restrooms. Always wear protective footwear in the restrooms and shower facilities.
2. Handles on cardio equipment. Wipe down / sanitize any parts of a cardio machine that are commonly touched, like power buttons and handles.
3. Free weights. These are likely quite dirty and should be wiped down before you use them.
4. Stretching mats. These areas are notorious for accumulating sweat, dirt, and skin particles. Either wipe these areas down before you, or lay a protective towel between you and the mat.
These areas are common breeders of bacteria and if you’re not prepared when you go to the gym, you could have an infection or illness waiting for you. In order to fully take charge of your health, you have to not only exercise (which you’re already doing), but also ensure that any equipment that you use is safe and not a danger to your health.
Maren also writes articles for a New Jersey worker’s Compensation legal team, because, like hidden gym dangers, sometimes workers fall victim to unexpected injuries as well.