Sportspersons undergo intense training to attain mastery over their chosen sport. But you would think that this feat requires intense training, tactics and concentration only. It’s surprising to note that something as simple as body hair could also have an impact on sports performance! The next time you watch any sport, you will note that most sportspersons – men or women – will have removed their body hair.
The body hair is removed not just to look presentable. There are a number of reasons for it:
The most common reason for hair removal in sport is comfort. The materials that make up performance clothing, whether for athletes or cyclists, cling closely to the body. The hair comes in between the clothing and the skin, and this can cause chafing and discomfort.
Helps with Injury
Keeping the skin hair-free keeps it cleaner, and many sportspersons insist that lack of hair helps their injuries heal faster! Wounds can be cleaned better when there is no hair at the site of injury. Hairless skin is also ideal for sports massage, since the oils do not clog up the hair and pull it during massage.
For most amateur athletes, the milliseconds that can quite literally be shaved off their times, won’t be that important. Those who are serious about their sport however, are able to really squeeze their times for everything they can, by removing the resistance that body hair provides. This is particularly effective for swimmers, who often choose to remove every last hair that isn’t covered by a swim suit.
Hair Removal Methods
Sportspersons have to train every day, and wear their athletic clothes when the do so. This means that they must be hair-free every single day. While shaving might seem like the best option for everyday hair removal, frequent shaving causes a rough stubble, ingrown hair and inflamed skin. There is a greater chance of nicks and cuts as well. Besides, ingrown hair makes wearing sports clothing very uncomfortable, even painful.
Athletes and all sportspersons should instead use a depilatory cream. The cream breaks down the proteins of the hair, so that it is dissolved just below the surface of the skin. When the cream is washed off, the hair comes away easily and painlessly. The skin remains smooth and hair free for up to four days, and the hair regrowth is soft.