Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff: A Guide on Choosing the Best Gym Towel


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With gym memberships growing exponentially in the US, and over 60 million people signed up to a fitness-based membership of some sort, the country can now be considered to be fitness-obsessed.

People are increasingly concerned about living a balanced lifestyle. This entails not just eating a salad occasionally and hitting the gym for 30 minutes a week. People are now interested in providing their bodies with the right fuel, and using equipment that will help them reach peak performance in their workouts.

This is why you need to choose a good quality gym towel which you can take to the gym with you for your sessions.

Far from being an unnecessary luxury, a gym towel will allow you to stay hygienic during your workout and prevent your body from becoming bogged down with illnesses from other gym users.

If you are looking to pick up a high-quality gym towel but need a bit of guidance before you choose, please continue reading.

Why Do I Need a Gym Towel?

For people who are new to the gym, it may not be obvious why you’d need a gym towel. You may be thinking that the towel is just to wash in the shower after you’ve finished exercising.

That couldn’t be further from the truth.

The first thing you’ll notice when you enter a gym is probably the sweat that covers every piece of machinery inside. This is completely natural for a place where people exert themselves from dusk until dawn.

The reality is that you want to keep this sweat, and the bacteria within it, away from your body as much as possible. You also don’t want to become part of the problem.

Gym users are slowly but surely realizing that they should bring along a gym towel as part of good gym etiquette.

We have now established that you need to have a towel with you at the gym, for the sake of your hygiene, and well as the hygiene of others. But why not just bring a regular bath towel from home?

There are two key reasons why you should not do this. Firstly, you don’t want to begin mixing your regular towels with some which have the sole job of absorbing lots of sweat.

Secondly, there are a number of qualities that you’ll need from your gym towel which regular towels may not have.

Desirable Qualities in a Gym Towel

The first factor that you should consider when choosing your gym towel is the material. For the best balance of price and performance, cotton is the best material for a gym towel, especially if you can find a 100% pure cotton towel.

Cotton towels offer outstanding absorption, and they are gentle on the skin. You don’t want an abrasive material, as this could graze your skin or even make marks of the gym equipment.

There are some other materials which you could pick for your gym towel. Microfiber has the advantage of being small and drying very quickly. This means that you could use it multiple days in a row, if necessary.

You should also be conscious of the size of your towel. You won’t be needing a full-sized bath towel with each time you go to the gym.

A towel around the 30″ x 14″ size is probably the best size compromise. You should choose a relatively thick towel (about an inch), as this will mean that the towel will last longer.

One key advantage of using a specific gym towel is that they are designed to be washed very frequently. Whereas a normal towel will begin to wear out and become course after several washes, a gym towel should remain soft and absorbent for much longer.

How to Properly Use a Gym Towel

You should try to build a habit of using your gym towel both before and after exercising on any machine. This ensures optimum hygiene and sets a great standard of etiquette for other users to follow.

Most gyms will have an antibacterial gel available near to the machines. You should first use this to spray down the machine.

Next, it’s time to use your gym towel. Gently wipe away any visible sweat that you can spot on the machine.

You won’t need to clean the equipment from head to toe. Only the areas that come into contact with the skin of gym users needs to be cleaned.

Focus your efforts on the areas of any machines that make contact with the hands. Human hands are the most effective spreader of germs in the entire human body.

They easily pick up and distribute bacteria. And because humans frequently touch their eyes and mouths with their hands, which can spread illness and infection.

Once the equipment has been wiped down, you are ready to use it for your workout. Don’t feel the need to wipe down the equipment between sets. Wait until you are totally finished before repeating the process again to clean the machine.

Gym Towel Recommendations

There are plenty of conventional gym towels available. However, a couple of highly innovative products are now entering the market which provides amazing benefits to your workout.

The TowelTech Premium Fitness towel is one such product. This unique product has been engineered with hygiene and convenience in mind to separate it from the majority of the towels available on the market.

TowelTech uses a modern fiber called Tencel. Tencel provides a built-in resistance to both bacteria and odors that natural fibers like cotton cannot match. In addition to this, it is a very fast-drying material.

The design includes an integrated magnet, meaning it can hang onto most equipment, keeping it away from the floor and other unclean surfaces.

To finish off the convenient design, the TowelTech includes color-coded sides, so that you never wipe your face with the side that has cleaned the equipment. It also has a zipper pocket for your phone and keys.

Upgrade Your Workout

Using a gym towel will change the way that you work out for the better. You will be at less risk of picking up infections and viruses from the machinery.

It will also allow you to contribute to the spreading of good gym culture. This is important as gyms become more mainstream throughout society.

Have you already got a gym towel? Be honest in the comments below and tell us if you have ever used a machine in the gym and not wiped it down after.

Jeff Campbell

Jeff Campbell is a husband, father, martial artist, budget-master, Disney-addict, musician, and recovering foodie having spent over 2 decades as a leader for Whole Foods Market. Click to learn more about me

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