If you’ve ever borrowed a yoga mat from your gym, you may have wondered about contracting athlete’s foot. Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection that makes feet dry, red and extremely itchy. You get it when your feet come into contact with dead skin cells infested with the fungi. And, like all bacteria, these infection-causing cells thrive in warm, damp environments — AKA, pretty much every corner of your gym or fitness studio. While athlete’s foot remains solely (wink, wink) on the skin’s surface, a staph infection like MRSA can enter your body through any opening in the skin and cause a serious infection throughout your body. MRSA can be contracted the same way athlete’s foot is, in any damp place where other people have walked before you. Most gyms have sanitation wipes readily available and encourage members to wipe down their equipment after each use, and if not, make sure to bring your own!

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