Why Do Swimmers Shave Their Armpits
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.
Why do swimmers shave their armpits. A study conducted by the american college of sports medicine compared freshly shaven swimmers with a control group in the pool. Competitive swimmers are known to shave their entire body. One of the benefits of shaving your armpits is that you rid it of hair that provides a base for your apocrine glands. Both won gold medals.
Since then many studies have been conducted including one by nasa. They shaved because they believed it reduced drag. Some of the reasons are hygienic. Thats what happens in the armpits when the apocrine glands release their milky substance.
Studies show that removal of body hair has a direct impact on performance a substantial one at that. 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. Its odorless until it conspires with bacteria to produce the dreaded bo. Swimmers shave their entire bodies including their arms legs torso chest and back.
This is only partially true. Some of the most manly men in our society shave their armpits for different reasons. 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. There actually is good reason for it.
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. Many professional athletes shave off almost all their body hair olympic swimmers body builders some runners etc and do so for different reasons.