There are many reasons for keeping gym equipment clean – from the happiness of the patrons (who likes to work out on machines that smell like day old sweat?) to the prevention of disease spread. Gyms are a breeding ground for germs, and unless properly cleaned, could wreck havoc on the immune systems and bodies of the individuals working out. The golden rule of gym patrons has always been to wipe down the machine after use, but just like there are people who don’t wash their hands after using the restroom (gross), there are people who don’t wipe down their machines after use. We recommend to wipe the machine before and after use just to be sure that you are using and leaving a clean machine.
Now let’s get into all the fun bacteria details about what is lurking in unclean gym equipment. Warm, moist environments are ideal breeding grounds for bacteria – which is exactly the environment of a gym. According to Dr. Pritish Tosh, MD of the Mayo Clinic, there is definitely potential for transmissions of certain kinds of infections. One of the biggies being Community-Acquired MRSA – which has been documented among athletic teams with shared equipment.
Even more problematic than weights and treadmills are the soft, porous equipment, ie. yoga mats and machine padding, as bacteria thrive in the squishy materials. “Other germs that may linger on shared equipment could cause urinary tract infections, E. coli, fungus growth (ie. athletes food) and warts including those cause by human papillomavirus” reports Men’s Fitness. Let’s not exclude the common cold, flu and ringworm which are so easy to contract on shared surfaces.
The good news is that working out regularly boost the immune system and there are also great cleaning supplies that allow us to prevent a lot of this contamination through simple cleaning steps. We recommend providing wipes in gym facilities for patrons use before and after their workouts. Because wipes are convenient, patrons are much more likely to use them over sprays. Wipes are pre-soaked, so they help give you control over the amount of liquid being used to clean the machine. They also provide better surface coverage than traditional sprays. Give us a call to find the right wipes for your facility!