Photo: danr13 (Getty)
As someone who never goes to the gym and as someone who shudders at the thought of lifting weights, this particular new bit of news doesn’t concern me as much as it should concern all you gym lovers.
According to a new study by Elliptical Reviews, which is a site that’s all about providing independent reviews of gym equipment, it seems that there is a large amount of bacteria on various different types of equipment at the gym.
The website attended three classes for several different types of workout to assess the bacteria that could be found in each one, swabbing equipment from barre, CrossFit, spin and hot yoga sessions. Some of their results were rather surprising. And not very nice.
The team measured the CFU of each swab, otherwise known as colony-forming units, a measure of the volume of microbes in a sample. It found that a swab from a CrossFit class contained 153,410 CU, Hot Yoga 25,533, Cycling 13.3 and Barre 10. Respectively, they analyzed swabs from a barbell, rental mat, resistance knob and wooden bar.
To put that into some context, that made CrossFit equipment forty-eight times dirtier than a toilet seat, Hot Yoga mats eight times. Barre and cycling equipment, conversely, were 320 and 240 times cleaner.
That’s right, folks. Instead of putting little pieces of toilet paper on a toilet seat before you sit down, perhaps you should be doing it on your gym equipment instead.
The site also found that the types of bacteria found on the equipment included a high percentage of bacillus, which is a type of bacteria which can both harm and help humans. It is used in some medicines and antibiotics. But more bad news. Research also found evidence of gram-positive cocci, which can cause skin infections and pneumonia. Swell.
So just make sure to wipe down all of the gym equipment before using it, and also make sure not to sit on a toilet seat if you have open wounds on your butt — which we really hope you don’t.