Wrestling Mats Are a Leading Cause of MRSA in High Schools and Colleges November 07, 2016 09:00

The CDC (Center for Disease Control) reports that more Americans die from Staph or MRSA each year than from AIDs or HIV. Also according to the CDC, the top sports attributed to MRSA infections are wrestling, football, and rugby. MRSA, Staph, and other skin infections are rampant in high school and college sports due to the amount of skin to skin contact between athletes, as well as the exchange of bodily fluids. In a sport like wrestling, skin to skin contact is unavoidable and there is little way of knowing whether your competition has a skin infection or is carrying a bacteria or virus. Regardless, wrestlers leave a lot on the mat, including bodily fluids which can also transmit MRSA or Staph long after the match is over. 

The worst part about finding so many wrestlers with infections? MRSA and Staph are preventable, along with other skin infections, flu, and HIV. Keep reading for things that you can do to prevent infection and things your high school or college should be doing to protect wrestlers and athletes.


  1. Educate themselves and others. Coaches and teachers should educate wrestlers on the factors to help prevent infections and how to recognize and treat one right away. 
  2. Use good personal hygiene. Athletes need to shower directly after competition or practice with antimicrobial soap. Clean your practice clothes and uniforms after every use.