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Why Do Swimmers Shave Their Armpits

Both won gold medals.

Why do swimmers shave their armpits. Some female swimmers might trim down that area as womens swim suits are cut differently than mens and they might want to avoid a few embarrassing hairs sticking out but this is by no means a. The arms cover a large surface area of the body and are therefore an important area to shave as it will help to lower drag and increase the swimmers feel for the water. The practice of shaving became popular back in the 1950s when two male swimmers showed up for the olympics after shaving their bodies not just their armpits. This is only partially true.

Some of the reasons are hygienic. One of the benefits of shaving your armpits is that you rid it of hair that provides a base for your apocrine glands. There actually is good reason for it. Sweat mingles with bacteria on your skin to cause odor.

Other reasons are practical or have to do with pure aesthetics. Competitive swimmers are known to shave their entire body. Since then many studies have been conducted including one by nasa. Thats what happens in the armpits when the apocrine glands release their milky substance.

However a popular myth that needs to be dispelled is that swimmers shave to rid their body of excess hairs. Studies show that removal of body hair has a direct impact on performance a substantial one at that. While removal of hairs is definitely helpful in making ones body more aerodynamic in the water the real purpose of shaving is to remove the thin layer of dead skin cells that coat the outer layer of the epidermis. A study conducted by the american college of sports medicine compared freshly shaven swimmers with a control group in the pool.

They shaved because they believed it reduced drag. Some of the most manly men in our society shave their armpits for different reasons.