With January now well underway, gyms across the UK are packed with enthusiastic people hoping to get fit this year.
After a sweaty session you’d think that most gym-goers would chuck their clothes straight in the laundry, but a surprising new survey suggests that this isn’t actually the case.
Tap Warehouse surveyed 264 people who exercise at least once a week, and found that just 55% of Brits wash their gym clothes after wearing them once, while 10% never wash their sweaty garments.
Meanwhile, 44% wear the same sweaty gym gear more than once, with 7% waiting five or more times to wash their gym kit.
As you can imagine, this practice isn’t exactly hygienic, and can actually lead to some nasty infections.
Dr Abigail Short, a private doctor at bark.com, said: “Gym clothes can harbour lots of bacteria due to sweat and because of the interaction between gym apparatus and public changing rooms.
“Touching fitness machines, wiping your sweaty head on your t-shirt, or sharing a barbell can transfer germs. So, it’s better to keep things clean in the gym.”
The disgusting gym practices don’t end there – the survey also found that one in eight Brits use the same towel to wipe their face and gym equipment.
This means that bacteria – including Staphylococcus Aureus – can easily spread between gym-goers.
Dr Short explained: “Touching fitness machines, wiping your sweaty head on your T-shirt, chucking someone their water bottle or sharing a barbell can transfer germs, so it’s better to keep things clean in the gym.”
Based on the findings, Dr Short advises that gym goers should regularly wash their hands.
She added: “Please wash your hands! Fungal infections can be easily passed on from person to person, again because of shared apparatus and changing rooms.
“Washing before and after the gym massively cuts dow your risk of contracting one.”
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