Playing sports or working out can be rewarding and fun, but it’s also hard on your body. For many, one of the biggest concerns is chafing. That burning sensation comes when the skin rubs against itself or clothing for an extended period.
Before you put on your running shoes or lace up for a long gym session, it is best to familiarize yourself with how to prevent chafing. These five tips will show you the best ways to do it:
1. Use the Right Powder
When it comes to chafing, the groin area is one of the most common areas for rubbing. The primary reason is that this area doesn’t have much fat or oil glands, making your skin dry and sensitive.
To avoid chafing in this area, carry a talcum powder or similar anti-chafing product in your gym bag. After you get dressed, sprinkle it on before heading out for a run or game of tennis.
2. Wear the Right Undergarments
Another cause of chafing is wearing clothing that doesn’t fit properly. If your clothes are tight (or if they’re made from synthetic fibers), then they might not allow the skin to breathe.
Wear breathable undergarments such as cotton or mesh shorts and shirts when you can. When putting on tight clothes, use a lubricant such as petroleum jelly or body glide to reduce chafing.
You can also buy special anti-chafing undergarments that keep the skin from rubbing directly against clothing. There are many quality stores online that specialize in designing anti-chafing garments for athletes.
3. Use Antiperspirant for Sweaty Areas
You might think that sweat is your worst enemy when it comes to chafing, but this isn’t true in most cases. Chafing tends to be worse when the area is dry and sticky, so a bit of sweat shouldn’t do too much damage.
The real reason to use antiperspirant is that it will reduce sweat production. The skin will feel more relaxed, reducing your risk of irritation.
You should still take steps to prevent chafing if you’re planning a big workout, but this is one area where using an antiperspirant can help.
4. Don’t Ignore Lubricants
Some areas will become very sweaty when you play sports or work out for extended periods. If chafing is a concern, it’s important to use lubricants in these hot spots.
One of the most common areas is under the breasts, but problems can also develop under the arms and groin. Make sure to apply a lubricant every time you work out or play sports for the best results.
5. Use Anti-Chafing Clothing
If you’re worried about chafing, then it’s a good idea to invest in anti-chafing clothing. This is especially true for athletes and others who experience many problems in the groin area.
Several different garments can protect you from rubbing and irritation when you play sports or work out. Some shirts have smooth panels around the thighs, while others have moisture-wicking materials that pull sweat away from your skin.
Even if you’re not worried about chafing right now, keep in mind that this could change as you age or increase the amount of time you spend exercising. Several types of clothing are machine washable and can be used for years, so you might as well have a few of them on hand just in case.