Next time you get down on that bench, consider all the other guys and gals who sweated their way through their workouts there as well.
Along with that pool of perspiration, the other folks could be leaving a host of other nasty things behind. Things like viruses, bacteria, and fungi that can cause some gross, uncomfortable, or even serious skin conditions if they make their way into your body.
Dr Cameron Jones, a microbiologist with expertise in mould, infection control and environmental health, agrees, telling the ABC “a lot of gyms are open 24 hours a day and are used 12 hours a day at least, and there's a huge volume of people who go through.”
As a result, he says there are a lot of different germs - bacteria, yeast, fungi and viruses - lurking inside gym exercise equipment, floor mats and handrails.
Dr Jones also advises that floor-mounted resistance training equipment, in particular, may be hotspots for germs, adding “with the high-touch machines that have handles, the greater the force on the hand or the feet, the greater the transfer of germs to that item.
“If you're using your towel to wipe down equipment, you're putting it in contact with a truly unsavoury variety of germs. They can then be transferred to your house when you take home your gym kit."
“And if you're using your dirty towel to dab at your sweaty face, it can actually make you sick.
"You're already sweating and have elevated temperature. If the material on your towel is dirty, obviously if you pull that across the surface of your skin, then if you have any sort of surface (blemish), like a pimple, that can get infected."
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