Super Search

Question from JoAnneh

I am a Pilates fusion teacher and yoga teacher.  In many of the corporate group exercise rooms I teach in, we use weights coated with polyurethane or neoprene.  In many cases these coatings are cracked, chipped or falling off in pieces. I have read that these disintegrating materials are quite dangerous to 1) touch, re: skin toxicity, 2) to hold (as they continue to fall apart with use and expose the student to bits of toxic chemicals both on the skin and in the air), and 3) to breath near, as the materials send small bits of inhaling-friendly chemicals into the lungs. I did a study for our town on leaf blowers and found that even the smallest microns of particulate matter blown into the air from them enters the lungs, passes the blood brain barrier, and causes all sorts of disorders, including contributing to heart disease, high blood, ADD like symptoms, and even–long term–Alzheimer’s symptoms.  I’m wondering if the materials on these falling-apart weights are just as dangerous?  The management has been slow to address this.

Lisa’s Answer

I can’t speak to how these specific materials would enter the environment.  One concern is that antimicrobials, which are sometimes added to plastic to prevent mold growth, can release nanoparticles into the environment.  Here is a study about nanoparticles escaping from plastic coating.


Toxic Products Don’t Always Have Warning Labels. Find Out About 3 Hidden Toxic Products That You Can Remove From Your Home Right Now.