How to Stay Healthy & Safe at the Gym

Many people can now access gyms, as various states and cities continue to re-open. However, it is vital to proceed with caution as the coronavirus pandemic's spread isn't over yet. Yes, you must exercise to remain physically and mentally fit. But are there precaution measures you can take to avoid exposing yourself to infections at the gym? Here are some of the steps you must follow to be as safe as possible during gym workouts. Please continue reading to learn more.

The Gym Equipment should be Properly cleaned and Sterilized

If your gym does not wipe down machines and weights with a sterilizer between user-intervals, you better keep away from it. Also, make sure that there is proper gym disinfecting, including deep cleaning after hours of use. Thus, before joining any gym, it is important to have a conversation with its management on their cleaning policy. Well, they can be disinfecting their equipment, but it's your responsibility to cross-check the products they use to clean against the list of EPA-approved disinfectants.

Disinfectants take up to 10 minutes to be effective. Therefore, ensure that you don't jump to machines immediately after they are disinfected. I mean, it takes more than just cleaning the machines. What if my gym doesn't have the staff to clean the machines between workouts? In this case, you better bring your disinfectant to clean your machines before using them. It's challenging, but you have to do it to stay healthy and safe at the gym.

Practise Social Distancing at Gym

According to the ministry of health re-opening guidelines, gyms must space their machines so that they are six feet apart. What if my gym does not have enough space to maintain that spacing? Well, you better change your gym. There is no reason why you should compromise your health. Alternatively, you can go to the gym when it is not overcrowded as it is possible to leave a machine or two between you and the next person. Mostly, when working out, you won't be in masks. Therefore, it is mandatory to practice social distancing.

Bring your own Supplies

Most gyms provide towels for their members; however, it is not safe to use shared sheets a time like this. Yes, the gym towel might look clean, but you don't know how many people have touched it. For this reason, it is advisable to come with your personal supplies such as towels. Also, don't share water bottles in the gym. Having your own water bottle means that you will not be required to touch a shared water fountain. Don't use anything contaminated, and remember to clean your supplies well after leaving the gym.

Wear a Mask when it is Safe

It is not safe to attend a gym where everyone is not wearing a mask. It is challenging to wear a mask in gym sessions, especially if the workouts are intensive and cause you to breathe heavily. In this case, attend gym sessions where they offer lower intense workouts such as yoga and Pilates. Also, don't take your mask off until you have entirely exited the gym environment. If you have to do the high intensive workouts, ensure you observe social distancing as your mask will be off.

Sometimes, people are uncomfortable wearing masks, even in public places like the gym. Therefore, the gym management should have a written rule that members cannot be admitted unless they are on masks. Ensure that your gym management enforces this rule, and also, their staffs are in masks. If not, you better keep away from that gym rather than risk infection.

Pay Attention to the Flow of Air in the Gym

If your gym doesn't have enough ventilation, then it is not safe. The only way you can be safe is by going to a spacious gym with enough windows and ventilation channels. As it is known, adequate air circulation dilutes the virus concentration, which reduces the likelihood of infection. People who are exercising inhale and exhale more air raising the chances of infection in poorly ventilated gyms.

Following the above steps will help you remain safe and healthy in the gym- though it isn't without risk. Thus, you should assess your situation before deciding between returning to the gym. For instance, if you are in a high-risk category, you will have to consider your situation before going back to the gym.

Author's Bio: 

Katie earned a BA in English from WWU and loves to write. She also adores hiking in redwood forests and photography. She feels happiest around a campfire surrounded by friends and family.