Gyms are reopening in several states, but a lot people are concerned if they're safe.
Before coronavirus, research found athletic training rooms already had high levels of bacteria.
The flu virus and even drug resistant bacteria was found on nearly a quarter of surfaces. That's based on a study of swabs at high school and college training rooms.
The good news is when people were educated about how to prevent germ spread, the count was reduced to almost zero.
So, frequent and clear reminders of expectations of gym members will be key for coronavirus as well.
“That's frequent and visible communication and that’s reminders of the importance of frequent handwashing, showering before you go to the gym, showering right after you go to the gym, reminding people to bring their own towels or water bottles,” said Dr. James Voos with University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center.
Dr. Voos was the lead author on that pre-COVID-19 study on gym germs. He says it’s also a team approach in coronavirus protection.
Facilities have to provide the appropriate cleaning supplies and organization for social distancing, but it’s up to members to stay home if they're sick, to wipe down equipment before and after use, and to wash their hands more frequently during workouts.
He also says it’s a good idea to go in for a shorter workout to start to get a feel for changes. Also, to allow for gyms to make any necessary changes as people start to come back.