Exercise may be good for your health, but bad hygiene almost never is. We don’t really pay much attention to it, but most gyms are generally not the most hygienic of places. There’s a reason we closed them all down when Covid was peaking (well, we closed everything down, but you get the point).
Working out in a dirty gym can get you a plethora of diseases that will immediately ruin the physical and mental health you’ve regained with your workout. Let’s take a look at some of the particularly nasty ones.
One of the most transmissible diseases you can catch in a gym, ringworm is so infectious because it thrives in wet environments (what, sweat and showers?) and can actually spread before the person infected with it has any symptoms. It’ll cause a rash that can spread quickly if left untreated, so go see a physician as soon as you have the first symptoms.
Yes, you can get an STD at the gym. And no, it won’t be because you got lucky. You can get herpes through open cuts or wounds and is mostly translated through saliva. So I think the best advice I can give you is to not put things in your mouth at the gym. While you are unlikely to get herpes from surface material, it’s better to not risk it at all.
Add flu to this as well. As we now know after 18 months of Covid-19, badly ventilated rooms are Heaven for infectious diseases. If there were ever badly ventilated rooms on the planet, they have to be gym rooms, right? As for preventing this, you should know the drill by now: keep your distance, don’t cough in peoples’ faces, wash your hands, stay home when you’re not feeling okay.
Despite how cute it sounds, pink eye is an inflammation of your eye that’ll make it turn entirely pink or reddish. It can make your eye crust up overnight, which will make it harder to open the next morning. Thankfully, you’ll only ever catch this if you touch dirty gym equipment and immediately touch your eyes before washing your hands.
Also known as human papillomavirus or HPV, plantar warts are the bumpy kind of warts you can get on the soles of your feet. That said, you should be relatively safe if you never walk barefoot in a gym, which shouldn’t be too hard to achieve. Just keep those shoes on, wipe down your machines before you use them and this’ll be one less problem to worry about.
This funny-sounding disease is short for staphylococcus and can get pretty rough. It starts as a red bump with some pus and boils and goes all the way to meningitis. Thankfully, this disease is also the easiest one to avoid since it’s only transmitted through skin-on-skin contact. So as long as you avoid touching people, it should be fine.
This disease basically causes wounds that ooze and crust over. You’ll mostly only get this through skin-on-skin contact much like staph, so the same rules apply here if you want to avoid contracting it. In general, don’t touch people, don’t use dirty equipment, keep your distance, wash your hands. That’s all there is to it.