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5 Tips to Prevent Skin Infections at the Gym

by kelly / February, 13 2019 01:30

Photo of a woman in the background and out of focus working out in the gym by some free weights

Gyms are a hot bed of dirt, germs, and infections. Don’t get me wrong I’m still very supportive of working out at the gym and I try to do it myself every week but just know a variety of common skin infections are lurking around. I’m talking about ringworm, plantar warts, or impetigo. Ugh. But rest assured you can get a good workout in and avoid these infections by following a few simple steps suggested by the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD).

Wear Shoes

Yes some people go bare foot in the gym. I’ve seen it with my own two eyes and it’s not the most pleasant sight. So don’t do it. In fact you should always wear shoes at the gym and add to that around pools, in the locker room, and in community showers.

Wear Loose-Fitting, Moisture-Wicking Clothes

Wearing this type of clothing will help keep your skin dry and prevent germs from growing. Germs seem to like moist environments. Also make sure to wash your gym clothes regularly, preferably each time after wearing them.

Clean Equipment

I hate it when I see someone else’s sweat on a machine at the gym. I always clean equipment after I use it and before as well if I see that someone else hasn’t. Cleaning goes a long way to preventing the spread of germs.

For additional protection – consider adding a barrier, like a towel between your skin and the piece of equipment.

Keep Cuts Clean and Covered

Not only does this protect you but it also prevents the spread of infections to others. Avoid community saunas, steam rooms, and hot tubs when you have cuts. Once the wound has healed, head straight back in – I know I will!

Wash Your Hands and Shower

When you’re done working out, wash your hands and shower (don't forget to wash your face as well). One other tip – avoid sharing or using communal personal care items as much as possible at the gym.

Healthy Skin

These five tips will go a long way to protecting your skin, preventing the spread of illness and will make your gym experience both pleasant and healthy. For even more helpful skin care tips check out our Skin Care or Education blog series.

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