Mirror (Nathan Bevan) 27th Sept 2017:
As First Word problems go, worrying about how often you should wash your yoga mat is pretty much up there.
So if there’s one thing more likely to put you off your chi than listening to Sting banging on about the benefits of Tantric sex, it’s the thought of getting ringworm infestation from a good stretch sesh.
Like it or not, while you might come out of a successful lunch time yoga class feeling spiritually cleansed, your borrowed mat will most likely be minging with all kinds of invisible nasties ready to lay you low.
Think of it: you’re in the middle of a Half Lord of the Fishes pose and the sweat is pouring off you and you’ve just left a bum-shaped moisture mark where you were sat.
At which point, as the dewy imprint of that pair of crescent moons slowly starts to fade, you need to ask yourself: “Am I okay with leaving that for someone else to salute the sun on?”
You wouldn’t a leave piece of equipment soaked in perspiration at the gym would you? Nope.
And you most definitively wouldn’t disrobe after savasana, take a big whiff your fetid kit and think, “Yeah, that’ll go another week, I reckon.”
Dr David Anthony Greuner, boss of NYC Surgical Associates, warns: “Bacteria can survive on a surface for several hours to days, while viruses can survive longer and even linger for weeks. Making skin contact with a dirty yoga mat covered in germs and bacteria can lead to skin infections, acne, toenail fungus and even transfer of the herpes virus and staph and strep infections in susceptible individuals. That’s the bad news.”
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