Health Risk at a Gay Gym?
I know this is politically incorrect and apologize for same. Nevertheless, I assume gay men suffer more physical problems as a group than straight men, because of the proportionately higher incidence of HIV and the various other sexually transmitted diseases in the gay population. My question: Are my assumptions correct? I am thinking of joining a gay gym (I'm straight) and wonder if I should have any more concern about getting in a hot tub in that environment than at a "straight" gym.
Interesting question. I'd say that the main point here is that it's not gay men who suffer more physical problems as a group than straight men, but it's people (men, women, straight or gay) who have a lot of sexual partners and practice high-risk sex who have a higher incidence of illness than others. By high-risk sex I mean sex with exchange of bodily fluids like semen, vaginal fluids, and menstrual blood. Specific acts include both anal and vaginal intercourse, and any kind of oral-genital copulation (male to male, female to male, male to female, and female to female).
So I don't see any particular risks in being a member of a gay gym, but I would not put my head underwater in any hot tub in any gym. I think it's fine to get into a hot tub, as long as you wash yourself off immediately afterward. But, there are definitely diseases than can be transmitted in water, particularly when there is heavy public use.
Also, don't forget to use an antifungal foot powder after using a public hot tub or shower.