With all the focus channeled towards intense training, tactics and concentration, one would never think that something as simple as body hair can have major impact on sports performance. If you see professional athletics, swimming, or cycling, you’ll notice that most – if not everyone- of the contestants, both men and women, would have gotten rid of their body hair.
There are a wide variety of reasons for doing this, and it is not just to be easy on the eyes during the competition!
This is one of the major reasons for hair removal while playing sports. Performance clothing for runners, cyclists, and other athletes are generally made of materials that stick to your body. Having an additional layer between your skin and the material can lead to the clothing space moving and rubbing, causing blisters, chafing, and discomfort.
Helps with Injury
Lot of athletes insist that getting rid of body hair helps with injuries. For those who are exposed to risks like road rash, such as cyclists, being hair-free can promote healing, and help in keeping the wound a lot cleaner. For deeper tissue injuries and conditions, being hairless helps during massages, as it allows for a much smoother surface and reduces the chance of oils getting clogged up in the hair.
For majority of amateur athletes, the milliseconds that can actually be shaved off their times, won’t be that crucial. However, those who take their sport seriously can actually squeeze their times from everything they can, even by removing the resistance that body hair provides. This is really effective for swimmers, who often remove every last hair that isn’t covered by a swim suit.
Hair removal methods
Figuring out the right hair removal method as a sportsperson can be a tedious task. As it is something that you would have to do on a regular basis, shaving may seem like the best bet. Shaving however, comes with its own issues. Regular shaving can make the skin sore and inflamed, and it also increases the number of ingrown hairs, which can make wearing sports attire painful and uncomfortable.
For athletes, the best choice can be a depilatory cream. These creams break down the proteins of the hair making it dissolve just below the surface of the skin, meaning that the hair would come off when you wash off the cream. This technique would leave you with smooth skin for up to four days, with softer hair regrowth.
So give it a shot, and reach the track ready for a performance matched only by your hair removal technique!