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  1. #1
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    To shave or not to shave?

    That is the question!

    I haven't crashed in many years, and don't plan on crashing again, but if I did, I have some pretty hairy legs. I'm guessing I'll get pretty ripped up. Are there any other reasons for shaving? Any insights on this would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Long-time Curmudgeon DrPete's Avatar
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    As a roadie, shaving is mainly a social/"in-group" thing. The whole road rash issue is bunk. It's mainly about looking cool.

    On the other hand, it's quite nice massaging in some embrocation on a cold race-day morning... I can imagine it would make getting in/out of the wetsuit a bit smoother...
    "Unless he was racing there was no way he could match my speed."

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrPete View Post
    As a roadie, shaving is mainly a social/"in-group" thing. The whole road rash issue is bunk. It's mainly about looking cool.
    Seriously, no kidd'n? What's not cool about hairy legs??

  4. #4
    Body by Guinness cjbruin's Avatar
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    Chicks dig shaved legs. End thread
    Fredo, you're my older brother and I love you...but don't ever take sides, with anyone, against the family again...ever.

  5. #5
    Long-time Curmudgeon DrPete's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Calminian View Post
    Seriously, no kidd'n? What's not cool about hairy legs??
    Pro road racers all shave their legs. Makes it easier for the soigneurs to give the post-race massages and what not. At the mere amateur level it's all about vanity, but even so, roadies even down to Cat 5 will see someone with shaved legs and view them as a stronger, more serious/dedicated cyclist.

    Weird, I know, but there it is.

    Still thinking about shaving for my tri this coming weekend...
    "Unless he was racing there was no way he could match my speed."

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrPete View Post
    Pro road racers all shave their legs. Makes it easier for the soigneurs to give the post-race massages and what not. At the mere amateur level it's all about vanity, but even so, roadies even down to Cat 5 will see someone with shaved legs and view them as a stronger, more serious/dedicated cyclist.

    Weird, I know, but there it is.

    Still thinking about shaving for my tri this coming weekend...
    Huh. That is too funny. I'd always heard it was a protective measure for crashes. Nah, I'm gonna keep mine hairy. I don't want to risk someone taking me too serious.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjbruin View Post
    Chicks dig shaved legs. End thread
    Hmmm. You think? I don't know. I have a feeling chicks dig guys with shaved legs about as much as we dig chicks with hairy legs.

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    Last edited by Calminian; 05-26-09 at 03:03 PM.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrPete View Post
    As a roadie, shaving is mainly a social/"in-group" thing. The whole road rash issue is bunk. It's mainly about looking cool.
    Really? I found changing dressings on my arms a huge pain (literally) compared to my legs when I hit the deck earlier in the year!

    Definitely better for massages.

  9. #9
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    OK, shaving your legs is a bit of a timing thing. Shaving your legs will give you the most time savings in the swim, then less in the bike, and almost none in the run. BUT, training with hairy legs(especially swimming) has the advantage that it is harder during training, so you can go faster in your peak race when you do shave. Pick one or two races per year as a peak race where you shave and taper, but don't shave before 5 weeks of training and no races or before the fun run on Saturday.

  10. #10
    triathlete? roadie? MTB? caelric's Avatar
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    Leg hair does almost nothing to slow you down during any event, especially since we wear wetsuits during most tri swims.

    Shaving does not protect you against road rash, either, but what it does do, is make it easier to clean the wound. Plus, pulling a bandage off a hairy leg hurts a lot more than pulling a bandage off a clean shaven leg.

    I shave my legs, but I don't have any illusions that I am faster for it.
    Go Fast By Any Means, my triathlon/motor sports blog

  11. #11
    Long-time Curmudgeon DrPete's Avatar
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    I've had road rash on a hairy leg and a shaved leg and really didn't see a big difference in wound care.
    "Unless he was racing there was no way he could match my speed."

  12. #12
    runnin' down a dream edbikebabe's Avatar
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    I always shave... Oh wait - you were talking to the guys, weren't you...

  13. #13
    Senior Member Barchettaman's Avatar
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    Makes a big difference if your swim ´leg´ is without a wetsuit, i.e. in a pool.

  14. #14
    Senior Member IRONHEAD1's Avatar
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    if your like me and your legs are totally covered in tattoos no one notices if you shave or not
    Cervelo S1 w/ mavic ksyrium sl's
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  15. #15
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    i want my legs to be like that but i have plenty of other things i need to spend my money on and seeing as how my parents are still supporting me i.e. college and a new bike i cannot since my father greatly disapproves of them...i have four already tho

  16. #16
    Long-time Curmudgeon DrPete's Avatar
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    Also remember that if you haven't trained yourself to the point of having some decent definition in your legs, shaving will just make you look like a little girl.
    "Unless he was racing there was no way he could match my speed."

  17. #17
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    Okay, I just checked with my wife. She says she digs my hairy legs. That does it for me. Not to shave!

  18. #18
    Senior Member Blossom's Avatar
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    Here is the real reason behind shaving. It is very much about being part of the 'in-group' and respecting the traditions of the group. Shaving has been part of cycling for years and years and once you are regularly doing hammerfest rides with the racers, you shave.

    By why? At my local Wednesday night race that is cleverly disguised as a group ride, I usually know about 60-70 percent of the folks. I know who is a squirrel and who is solid to ride behind or beside. But when I don't know the person, I want to know that he knows the rules about riding in a peleton and that the well being of everyone behind him depends on respecting the unwritten rules. If he respects the shaving tradition, I'm more inclined to let him get close.

    So why do I shave? Tradition.

    Uhm... and vanity. My legs are clearly my best feature and they look even more defined when hairless. The claims of being more aero, or better massages, or easier for bandages are all excuses for tradition and vanity.

  19. #19
    Senior Member thedutchtouch's Avatar
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    also a non-shaver here, with a fiancee who approves of leg hair.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blossom View Post
    Here is the real reason behind shaving. It is very much about being part of the 'in-group' and respecting the traditions of the group. Shaving has been part of cycling for years and years and once you are regularly doing hammerfest rides with the racers, you shave.

    By why? At my local Wednesday night race that is cleverly disguised as a group ride, I usually know about 60-70 percent of the folks. I know who is a squirrel and who is solid to ride behind or beside. But when I don't know the person, I want to know that he knows the rules about riding in a peleton and that the well being of everyone behind him depends on respecting the unwritten rules. If he respects the shaving tradition, I'm more inclined to let him get close.

    So why do I shave? Tradition.

    Uhm... and vanity. My legs are clearly my best feature and they look even more defined when hairless. The claims of being more aero, or better massages, or easier for bandages are all excuses for tradition and vanity.
    I kinda get it. It's like a proclamation of commitment—letting fellow riders know you're a "real" cyclist. I have nothing against tradition. But if there really is no benefit at all, I'll keep the hair.

  21. #21
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    oh and did i mention the Placebo effect? it's just like buying a $10,000 bike or wearing a $500 suit, you think you're faster so you go faster.

  22. #22
    superArti artifice's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barchettaman View Post
    Makes a big difference if your swim ´leg´ is without a wetsuit, i.e. in a pool.
    i see what you did there. ^^
    i woke up one morning and i stepped out of bed | had to get a bike, had to paint it red
    Of all the treasures I have, it’s the memories that are the most precious.

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