18 Super Dirty Spots at the Gym That Can Make You Sick

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11. Gym shoes

The soles of shoes carry a lot of bacteria. The longer you wear a pair without cleaning them, the higher the chance of germs and bacteria, including fecal matter and E. coli. Gym shoes are no exception. Most people don’t change shoes when they get to the gym, bringing everything they picked up on the street with them.

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12. Wipe dispensers

Most gyms have dispensers for moist towelettes, encouraging users to wipe down the station or machine they just used so it will be hygienic for the next user. But even that is a potential health hazard as a common use area that dozens of people will touch throughout the day, spreading their germs onto the dispenser and surrounding area.

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13. Weight-changing levers

Free weights are filthy, yes, but weight-lifting machines are not much better. People may occasionally wipe the handles and seats, but they often forget about the levers used to change the stack of weights on exercise machines.

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14. Water faucets

The sink faucet handles in a gym locker room are the most bacteria-infested surface of all, according to FitRated.com. They carry more than 545,000 colony-forming units (CFU) per square inch. That’s, on average, three times more than any other surface tested. The sink handle in one gym locker room had more than 7 million CFUs.

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15. Balance bar in exercise room

The balance bar is a commonly used piece of gym equipment. The good news is that many people use it while already wearing gloves because the grip is better. The bad news is that it’s not cleaned as often as equipment seats. To minimize your chances of catching some of the germs lurking on the bar, clean it before using.