How often do you need to clean your home gym?
How often do I need to clean my home gym?
A general rule of thumb would be to wipe down “high-touch surfaces,” such as dumbbells, mats, or a bench, after every use, Dr. Nelson recommends. “You can serve as an unwitting courier for bacteria from anything you’ve come in contact with during the day — think: subway rail, grocery cart, your coworker’s desk,” he explained.
If you share equipment with someone else, even if they live in your household, you’ll also want to disinfect surfaces in addition to wiping them down after each use, Dr. Nelson adds.
Ideally, you should deep clean at least once a month — more often if you use your home gym a lot or if the space has poor circulation or is damp, Dr. Nelson said.
How should I clean my home gym equipment?
For your regular cleaning, first wipe the equipment down with plain old soap and water, a damp cloth, or a dry dust cloth depending on what your equipment can handle, Dr. Nelson recommends. You’ll want to remove visible dirt and particles because those will “serve as a barricade to protect any resident bugs,” he explains.
Note: Be sure to unplug all electronics first and avoid drenching anything with electrical input or output, like the display on a spin bike.
Then, choose a disinfectant that kills bacteria and viruses. In addition to the recommendations below, check out the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) official guidelines for disinfecting your home.
Can all equipment be cleaned the same way?
A note of caution: “Many clear plastic displays and housings are made from polycarbonate, which has low chemical resistance to base alcohol solutions found in cleaners such as Lysol, Windex, and bleach,” explained Alex Davis, a fitness expert, and former plastics engineer.
You’ve likely seen the effects of hard cleaners on credit card checkout kiosks and the like, with cracked panels and erased number keys. For polycarbonate equipment, wash displays with only mild dish soap and water with a soft material, as sponges can also scratch, Davis advises.
During your monthly deep clean, soak any mats, clean items you use less frequently, and take extra care to clean areas that might get overlooked, such as the floor, handlebars, chairs, foam rollers, resistance bands, and yoga blocks. Don’t forget about your phone and headphones, too.
Most importantly, let the disinfectant sit on all surfaces for a bit. These products have a “dwell time,” meaning the time the solution has to be in contact with the bacteria to do its job, Dr. Nelson says. In other words, if you wipe off the disinfectant right away, you may compromise its effectiveness, so be sure to take a look at the directions before using a disinfectant, he recommends.
Should I also clean my fitness tracker?
Absolutely, yes. Dr. Nelson added that “if you wear the same watch for exercise and daily use, consider taking it off after vigorous exercise to let your skin breath and give it a quick wipe down so sweat and bacteria aren’t trapped up against your skin.”