Sweating it out in the gym is great fun, but not maintaining basic hygiene at the gym is SO not cool. The number of perspiration-covered people using the gym each day means the place is brimming with germs, so keeping yourself clean will help you avoid contracting some sort of infection or falling sick. Here are some of the basic gym hygiene tips you should never skip:
1. Always wash your hands properly
You should definitely wash your hands thoroughly with soap after using any gym equipment. Who knows where the sweaty hands that previously handled the gym equipment have been! While you probably won’t fall sick from touching dirty equipment, you might get an infection if you have any open wounds.
2. Wash your face before and after working out
Keeping your face clean will go a long way in helping you maintain a good complexion. Your sweat pores open up when you exercise and this means dirt on your skin can enter. Impurities are also removed from your skin via the pores so washing your face after exercising helps to keep your pores unclogged.
3. Change your clothes and get them washed asap
Sure, your clothes may have dried off by the time you finished cool down but that’s no excuse to lounge around in your workout clothes. By the end of the workout, your clothes are drenched in not just your own sweat but covered in germs from the equipment you’ve been using so change out of those and get them washed – this includes underwear, especially for women. All that trapped sweat can alter the vagina’s pH balance and put you at risk of a yeast infection.
4. Wipe down your yoga mat
Don’t wait until your yoga mat starts smelling bad before you start cleaning it. Always wipe your mat after using it before bacteria from sweat starts breeding. After all, the porous nature of the material yoga mats are made of makes them great sites for bacteria to hide and breed.
5. Bring flip-flops along
Athlete’s foot is not only a result of not changing out of your sweaty socks, it can also be caused by walking barefoot on dirty floors. Pack a pair of flip-flops whenever you go to the gym so you don’t have to spend unnecessary time in your dirty socks or pick up germs from other gym goer’s feet if you walk barefoot on the gym floor.
Gyms, like most other public places like swimming pools and saunas, are inevitable breeding grounds for germs and bacteria given the number of people visiting it. So do your body and health a favour and practice good hygiene at the gym. You wouldn't want to miss a training session due to a sick day!