Do Basketball Players Shave Their Legs? (The Truth Revealed)

Have you ever wondered why most basketball players have baby smooth legs? What about their shorn look on NBA players’ heads?

What’s the advantage or the secret behind the shaving pattern? From a basketball point of view, body hair is the most debatable topic.

So, do basketball players shave their legs? Yes, most basketball players shave their legs, mostly due to hygienic reasons. Some even say that their shaved legs make them more agile and faster. Others claim that it makes the game easier as there will be less friction between the ball and the player’s legs.

And some believe that it is just to keep them clean and neat.

But what’s your opinion?

Do you think that basketball players shave their legs before games? If yes, then what could be the reason for the obsession with shaving body hair?

Don’t worry.

We’ve got an answer for you! As basketball enthusiasts, we talked to basketball players, interviewed fans, and interacted with barbers who shave athletes’ body hair to grab their opinion.

Oh and last but not least, I am a professional basketball player. So I share my opinion as well.

Read ahead to find out more on why these athletes shave their legs!


Do Male Basketball Players Shave Their Legs?

Keeping bushes could be a style to some athletes but not all. Basketball players shave their legs for many reasons. Female athletes shave their legs for aesthetic purposes, but what about male athletes?

man shaving his legs

Some men basketball players shave their legs because they feel that it helps them run better. It makes them move quicker and more agile.

And some NBA players even shave their legs to make the game easier, and others do it for hygienic reasons.

But does shaving really improve athletic performance? Does it help NBA players win by increasing their wingspan? Of course not.

Well, as a basketball player, I must admit I also have my legs because it’s just more comfortable for me. I don’t believe that has huge impact on my game, though.

Often, male basketball players have smooth legs because they shave them. Male basketball players shave their legs during the off-season to get rid of any hair growth.

Shaving also helps prevent ingrown hairs and razor bumps.

As a related read, check out our article on “Why Do Basketball Players Smoke Cigars“.

Why Do Basketball Players Shave Their Legs?

Basketball players shave their legs because of several benefits. Here are some of the advantages:

Players can display leg muscles

NBA players have something to show. While some would brag about their height, others can’t stop talking about their amazing muscle definition.

But for most basketball players, leg muscles are key. With bushy legs, displaying leg muscles isn’t easy; hence basketball players shave to show their muscular appearance.

In addition, read our article on Why Do Basketball Players Lose Their Hair.

Players show off their expensive tattoos

The NBA tattoo culture is not new, as most basketball players have tattoos on their arms and leg tattoos.

However, only recently, people started getting expensive and unique tattoos on their legs, dressed in shorts.

basketball tatooed player

Many basketball players like to show off their body art when playing basketball. They often put their names, numbers, dates, and other designs on their legs.

For this reason, most basketball players shave their body hair, especially their legs, to show off the expensive leg tattoos.

That’s especially true in the summer. Playing basketball outdoors during winter is another thing.

Prevents Dirt And Sweat From Accumulating

During the basketball game and other contact sports, basketball players sweat heavily. This causes bacteria to accumulate in their bodies.

Players’ sweat accumulates in areas where there are no pores or where there is plenty of body hair.

This leads to acne breakouts and infections. To avoid these problems and other issues, basketball players shave body hair, especially their legs, regularly. Generally, this is for hygienic reasons.

Improves Blood Circulation

When basketball players exercise, the heart pumps harder to supply oxygenated blood to their leg muscles. This causes the legs to become cold and numb.

However, it is important to note that shaving body hair removes dead skin cells.  As such, it improves blood circulation by increasing the amount of fresh blood flowing through the legs.

So it somehow helps in improving basketball players’ overall basketball skills.

Makes The Legs Look Younger

Women basketball players node to this point. Ask them about youthful legs, and they’ll tell you about shaving body hair. Legs tend to age faster than other parts of the body.

This is because they do not receive enough sunlight. Shaving reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It also makes the legs appear younger.

Reduces Ingrown Hairs

Ingrown hairs occur when hair grows into the skin. When this happens, the hair makes an unsightly bump. Basketball players who shave their legs frequently in one way don’t experience this problem, including myself.

Products Basketball Players Use When Shaving Their Legs

There are different kinds of shaving creams available in the market. Shaving creams are a lot easier to use than other methods when shaving hairy legs.

Check out the video below for more cool information:

The best ones would be the ones that contain moisturizers. Most NBA players use them. Moisturizing shaving cream prevents dryness and irritation on the legs and other parts such as their muscular hands showing from their sleeveless jerseys. It also keeps the skin soft and supple.

Shaving gels are another option. These products are easy to apply and remove. They leave no sticky residue after application.

They also come in various scents to eliminate body odor. So, choose whichever one suits your needs when removing leg hair.

In fact, girls who want to hook up with basketball players use similar cosmetics.

If you’re using shaving gel, you may want to use a shaving brush first. It allows you to apply the product evenly without leaving streaks.

It doesn’t matter whether you use a blade or a razor. Just remember always to use a new blade or razor for each session to avoid other issues.

You can also try using pre-shave oil. It helps soften the leg hair so that it becomes easier to shave. You can use coconut oil, jojoba oil, olive oil, almond oil, etc.

Most basketball players exercise frequently and hence need such natural products for safe aftershave cleaning and also to remove bad odor. Such products are an important arsenal in their basketball gear.

How To Shave Your Legs For Basketball Players 

Here are the steps basketball players should follow to ensure they get the perfect leg hair shave. At least, this is how I do it with success.

  • Cleanse the area with soap and cold water or warm water
  • Apply shaving cream to the leg surface
  • Use a shaving brush if needed
  • Use a razor or electric shaver
  • Rinse the area thoroughly
  • Dry the area with a towel
  • Apply moisturizer
  • Apply lotion
  • Apply sunscreen
  • Apply aftershave balm

Why Do Athletes Shave Their Armpits

Whenever a basketball player raises an arm to shoot during a basketball game, you’ll see a smooth underarm. But why do they shave armpit hair? 

armpit of an athlete

Basketball players shave armpit hair for the same reasons as shaving the leg hair, but often, they shave their armpits to avoid bad body odor from the accumulating sweat and bacteria.

Like in many other sports, arm hair can make one feel embarrassed and even ashamed. Basketball players shave armpit hair as the only way to get rid of this problem.

Afterward, they can dunk confidently without worrying about their armpit condition and even the body odor.

Mistakes Basketball Players Make When Shaving Their Legs

A common mistake NBA players and even football players make when shaving legs is to use a razor that has too much pressure.

a player sitting on a bench

If you are using an electric razor, it can be very difficult to control the amount of pressure applied to your skin. A good way is to start with a light touch and then gradually increase the pressure as you go along.

Turning away from the mirror is another common mistake that leads to injuries. Basketball players get deep skin cuts which turn dangerous.

Additionally, basketball players may forget to moisturize after shaving, which cracks the skin and causes ingrown hairs. To prevent this, apply some lotion before shaving and on shaved legs.

Lastly, failure to maintain the razor is another mistake. Razors need washing, sharpening, and good storage.


Let’s see some popular questions related to the topic.

How Often Should You Shave Your Legs?

Should you shave leg hair every day or once a week? Or maybe twice a month? This is something that only you can decide. You need to consider your personal preference and lifestyle.  Plus, players in many other sports have a long season before the shave.

Once you’ve decided, stick to it. If you’re a basketball player, you might want to shave your leg hair at least once a week. That way, you’ll be able to maintain a clean and tidy appearance. This is what I do as well.

What Causes Hairs On Your Body?

There are two main reasons why hairs grow on your body. One reason is hormonal, and the other is genetic. The first reason a whole body hair grows is due to the presence of hormones in our bodies.

When we reach puberty, our hormone levels change, and these changes cause much body hair to grow. This is also why women tend to lose hair when they become pregnant.

Another reason for growing hair is genetics. If you’ve parents who had hairy arms or legs, then the chances are that you too will develop hairs on your body.


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