Why Do Soccer Players Shave Their Legs? Here’s All You Need To Know

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Athletes in all sports you can imagine, have some form of habit or pre-game ritual that leaves us questioning why they do these things.

In the world of professional soccer, there are common practices that catch our eye, like players making holes in their socks, putting tape on their fingers and wrists, or shaving their legs.

Is it a tradition that has continued to be perpetuated without reason, or are there concrete reasons why soccer players shave their legs? 

Why Do Soccer Players Shave Their Legs? 

There are various reasons why soccer players shave their legs. It isn’t just a tradition that has been perpetuated without reason.

Many of these reasons are actually related to the nature of the sport and the demands that the sport places on the players. Here are some of the reasons why soccer players shave their legs. 

Easier Injury Treatment

Injuries really are an occupational hazard for soccer players. There is almost no professional soccer player who hasn’t faced a form of injury in their career. The physical nature of the sport means soccer players are usually at the end of some nasty tackles that require quick on-field medical treatment. 

When a soccer player requires quick medical treatment on the field, the medical personnel more often than not use the bandage for a lot of injuries, whether it’s a sprain on the ankle or a sore foot.

It’s a quick fix that would enable the player to get back to the field of play so the team doesn’t play with a man down for too long. 

Easier Bandage Removals

If you know anything about bandages, you would know that putting them on hairy body parts can be a little bit problematic, especially when it’s time to take them off.

Soccer players shave their legs because it is easier to get the bandages on and off their legs. It also helps prevent the chance of bacterial infection because when bandages are left for too long on hairy legs, it provides an ideal environment for bacteria to grow. 

This makes shaving their legs crucial for soccer players, as no one can be certain when there will be an injury that will require the medical personnel to use bandages.

If the soccer player hasn’t shaved their legs, the medical personnel might be forced to shave the hair off right on the pitch, which could potentially be a waste of their valuable time.

Shaving Legs for Massages

Pre-game and post-game massages are an integral part of a soccer player’s overall fitness. These massages help relax the muscles and also reduce strains around the tissues.

It’s been noticed that the players who have been religious with their pre and post-game massages are rarely prone to injuries.

While it isn’t a compulsory thing for players however, it has been noted that players who get their massages feel better about their bodies.

The massages can be directed at specific areas as directed by the team’s medical personnel or they could just be for the whole body. 

Massages can be a little bit difficult if there is a lot of body hair. A lot of body hair can make massages less effective than they normally should be.

So, it’s common for soccer players to shave specific parts of their bodies. Since the legs are an important part of the sport, and the legs go through a lot of stress during the games, it’s one of the key areas that need to be worked on by the massage therapist. 

The major problem with hairy legs during a massage would be when a couple of the hairs are inevitably tugged at, making the player uncomfortable and the entire massage session less effective.

Shaved legs are thereby, the most effective way of maximizing the massage treatment for soccer players. 

Slide Tackle

The slide tackle is one of the key aspects of defending in soccer. Defenders often have to slide tackle to regain the ball or to stop an attacker from shooting at goal.

Many defenders and defensive midfielders who are the ones who regularly slide tackle have had a lot to say about the difference between sliding with shaved legs and sliding with hairy legs. 

Slide tackling with hairy legs, they’ve reported, causes some friction between the pitch and the legs that can lead to grass burn for the players.

Making this move with shaved hair has been said to be much smoother, more fluent, and doesn’t cause as much friction between the pitch and the legs, thereby reducing the chances of the players getting grass burns. 

However, these claims haven’t been scientifically proven in any way but have been championed by many soccer players.


Soccer players have a body of art, which is often well-toned and muscular. Their training regimen and focus on their legs in the gym make their legs toned and well-proportioned. Shaved legs definitely look good on them. 

Many professional soccer players shave their legs just because they know it looks really good. Professional soccer players make a lot of money from their social media platforms by posting pictures of themselves in training or working out in the gym. We all love to look good and take pictures that make us look and feel really good. 


Soccer is riddled with so many traditions, and leg shaving has found its place among them. We can say that the concept of leg shaving is a mix of tradition, performance enhancement, and personal preference.

The benefits of leg shaving in the reduction of injuries and improving performance on the field cannot be overemphasized. However, it’s all about personal preference and would keep being quite an interesting part of the beautiful game of soccer.

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