After several months of constant headlines and increasing restrictions, you are probably more than a little bit ready for this crisis to end. However, there is no way to know for sure when the Covid-19 pandemic will finally calm down. Thus, you might as well buckle in for the long ride. Besides, the same conditions that spawned Covid-19 could very easily spawn something even worse in the future. Naturally, this presents problems when you go to the gym. Let’s examine some of those safety problems and some tips that can be used to solve them.
Proper Hand Protection
A lot of people wear gloves when going to the gym. Generally, these are fingerless workout gloves that are meant for only one purpose: To protect your palms from chafing and blistering during hard workouts. While they may be fine for normal circumstances, you now need something that provides better protection from germs.
There are many possibilities here. If nothing else, you might use a set of thick rubber kitchen gloves. You might feel a little bit silly, but you will be able to touch the equipment without fear. We would not recommend that you use standard latex gloves, as they are too easy to rip. The friction that comes from a good workout will easily tear them to shreds, leaving you at risk. Even if you wear normal gloves on top of them, those latex gloves just won’t do the trick.
Let’s think for a moment about the most likely vectors of Covid-19 transmission within a gym. Obviously, direct physical contact is the biggest danger. However, indirect physical contact can also spread disease. If someone with the virus uses a certain workout machine, for instance, and you then use it immediately afterward, that residual sweat on the bench can be enough to transmit the Coronavirus.
The easiest way to deal with this is to carry gym wipes with you that you can use to clean surfaces you come in direct contact with both before and after your workout. People may take offense when you sanitize the equipment, but it is generally good etiquette to wipe down equipment after you have used it.
A Durable Face Mask
This one is pretty obvious, as a lot of people are using masks these days. However, most people are using disposable surgical masks. These are made of a material that isn’t much more durable than ordinary paper. They may be effective in preventing viral transmission (there is some debate about that, but it’s unrelated to our subject), but they aren’t durable enough for the gym.
Thankfully, there are many companies making cloth or neoprene face masks that are thick and strong. Many of them also have respiration holes on either side, and these will help to keep you from inhaling carbon dioxide while breathing hard in the gym. You will probably want something that is held in place with strong velcro, as this will make it easier to get a good tight fit.
Proper Bags For All Your Gear
When you think about this subject, you don’t just need to think about the equipment at the gym. The gear that you bring with you can also be a vector for transmission, whether to others or for yourself. For instance, let’s say you wipe the sweat from your head with a towel. After that, you set the towel on the weight bench behind you because you want to get back to your workout. That means you are getting your potentially infected sweat all over that bench, endangering the next user.
You should switch your normal gym bag with one that is made of plastic and which can be fully sealed. When we say “fully sealed,” we are talking about an airtight seal that keeps everything contained. A plastic grocery bag is not good enough! This is yet another way to prevent indirect transmission through bodily fluids.
In the wake of all these problems, a lot of people will find it easier to exercise at home. However, that completely removes the social aspects of your gym experience. Thus, you may find it worthwhile to continue attending. No matter what choice you make, we hope that this article has been helpful to you and that you will show your gratitude by filling out the contact form below.