Maintaining a sense of normality during crisis times, like what we are facing with the COVID-19 pandemic, is extremely hard.
“Gyms give us a sense of normality and routine, and for some, a workout is an essential part of life. Exercise gives us a physical and mental health boost each day. However, while gyms remain open and operational, we all need to be aware of how we can maintain our safety,” says Accredited Exercise Scientist, Nardine Presland.
According to one expert, COVID-19 is not transmitted via sweat.
“As a respiratory virus, sweat isn’t generally a transmission route, though contaminated skin and hands can be. Think more about how you might touch your nose and then touch equipment, or cough on a hand and touch equipment, than about the sweat itself,” Dr. Tara Smith, a professor of epidemiology at Kent State University explained.
“This advice shows us that now, even more, good gym hygiene is imperative.”
Keep your hands clean
Before starting any workout – wash your hands. Halfway through a workout – wash your hands. When you have finished your work out – wash your hands.
Washing your hands thoroughly is an excellent way to maintain a slightly higher level of hygiene than not. An even better recommendation is to carry hand sanitiser with you and use this throughout your workout.
Most gyms have cleaning liquids for equipment available, so you can clean the equipment before and after use.
Use a towel
Doing a warm-up or core exercises on a community yoga mat? Or using a seated piece of exercise equipment? Put your towel down first. Micro-organisms thrive in warm, dark and moist places. Make sure you wash the towel/s when you get home.
Bring your own water bottle
Avoid communal water dispensers or bubblers. Bring your own bottle that is clearly labelled, and we advise using a water bottle that has a lid and no exposed spout.
Make the most of down times
If you can, avoid spaces when they are busier. Avoid traditional busy times such as early morning or after work. You can always call ahead to get advice on when traditional busy times are.
Stay away when you need to
It is vital that you follow the recommendations as set out by the Department of Health to not attend public spaces.
It is great for our physical health, supporting our immune system and maintaining strong mental health.