Is Your Gym Killing You?

Illustration for article titled Is Your Gym Killing You?

As if it weren't hard enough to stick to an exercise regimen, now there's the news that in addition to sweaty spandex-clad thighs and the stench of B.O., the gym is a breeding ground for staph infections. As some people know, germs are everywhere. And if you're like me, you can't get a decent night's sleep at a hotel, feel creeped out if your skin touches movie theatre or airplane seats, and feel comfort only in a bottle of Purel. But now there are superbugs! And who knows what else. The bad news is that despite learning of the recent outbreak of staph infections at gyms, Equinox, The Sports Club/LA, Reebok Sports Club/NY and New York Sports Club said they "hadn't overhauled cleaning policies." So just as we've always suspected, exercise is bad for your health. No rubbing alcohol on the eliptical machines, no boiling water on the benches, no hospital-grade sterilization in the showers. How do we save ourselves?

Says Dr. Kent Aftergut, an assistant clinical instructor of dermatology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, "Antibacterial soap is probably not a bad idea." Gee, thanks a lot doc.

Staph at the Gym? Not If You're Careful [NYT]

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major disaster

@taylay: Oh...ew, that is nasty! I've never even looked down at the bottom. Now I'm afraid to.

Maybe I really should start brining some wet-naps or something to wipe the grips off before I use it. All we have is (dry) paper towels and no employees (other than the guy who comes around once a day to clean, though I don't know how much he actually does), since it's a small gym just for my apartment complex. I actually wish we did have someone staffing it. It's not that hard for nonresidents to sneak in, and there are several people I see there regularly who I know don't live here. They don't use the machines I like, so I've never bothered to say anything (and there's really not much they could do unless they had staff there all the time), but these people spend the whole time talking to each other really loudly while they work out, and god, they are annoying.