Why Do Soccer Players Shave Their Legs?

Soccer players are often known for shaving or even waxing their legs. There’s a reason that soccer players shave their legs to enhance their performance.

Soccer players shave their legs because of how frequently they get their ankles taped. Taping the ankle directly on the skin provides better support and stability. However, taping directly to the skin often painfully rips leg hair, so players shave the leg head to not deal with the issue.

In this article, we’re going to show you exactly why soccer players shave their legs.

Athletic Tape Directly On The Skin

Soccer players are consistently cutting back and forth on the field. Soccer is a game of changing directions at high speeds to beat the defender.

Consistently changing direction puts a tremendous amount of stress on ligaments, muscles, and bone structure.

Soccer cleats are typically low cut, which provides little ankle stability. To wear low-cut cleats (shown below) and still have ankle stability, soccer players will tape their ankles.

low cut soccer cleat

Typically, pre-wrap is applied to the ankle before the actual white tape for those unfamiliar with taping ankles. Soccer players play multiple games a week. Instead of using the pre-wrap to secure their ankles, they will use tape directly on the skin.

The athletic tape directly on the skin provides more added support, as it’s secured onto the skin and not the pre-wrap. For men with hairy legs, putting tape directly onto the skin may be fine. However, pulling the tape after a match may hurt the skin.

athletic tape for soccer

The tape is strong enough to pull the leg hairs out of your leg. It’s excruciating, and it’s similar to getting waxed. To prevent this, players will shave their legs. This makes it painless to put tape directly on the ankle.

Shaving Legs For Personal Preference

Shaved legs with definition look good. Soccer players, especially professional ones, often have large toned legs. They’re extremely muscular from the frequent kicking and leg exercises they do.

Soccer players wear shorter shorts so they can fully extend their stride without any interference. Shorter shorts, however, expose a good amount of leg, as seen in the picture below.

soccer player shaved legs

If you take Christiano Ronaldo for an example, his legs are muscular. It was reported he makes an average of $940,000 per Instagram post, mainly because of his good looks and muscular legs.

Soccer players will shave or wax their legs to show off their muscular bodies.

Shaving Legs For Massages

Soccer players relieve tight muscles from running by getting a deep tissue massage. This requires the masseuse to rub up and down the player’s leg.

If the player has hairy legs, there may be some discomfort in the massage for the soccer player. It will also make it uncomfortable for the person who is giving the massage.

On the flip side, the massage will be much easier on both the masseuse and the soccer player if the player has shaved legs. It will require less friction from the massage and help the player maintain comfort during the entire massage.

See Our Complete List Of Helpful Soccer Articles Here.

Other Reasons Why Soccer Players Shave Their Legs

Slide Tackle

The other reasons we’re going to explain here often vary from player to player.

The first reason is slide tackling. For players who are consistently on the ground, slide tackling with hairy legs can cause more friction between the surface and the leg, resulting in turf burn or grass burn.

Shaving the legs will make the slide tackle easier and more fluent. We haven’t proved this with any science; it’s a common theme for players to mention their shaved legs.

Shin Guards & Socks Easier To Wear

Players have mentioned that smooth legs actually make shin guards and socks more comfortable to wear. Often the socks can rub up against hairy legs and cause discomfort.

Soccer players that have smooth legs have reported being more comfortable to players throughout the course of the game. Again, we haven’t tested this idea but have just gathered reasons from soccer players.

Faster & More Aerodynamic

Similar to the reason why swimmers will shave their whole body, soccer players believe that no hair on the body makes them more aerodynamic.

We don’t support this idea and don’t think it makes much of a difference at all. Unless the leg looks like a tree with large leaves, there shouldn’t be much difference.

Athletic Tape For Shaving Legs

Are you a soccer player that shaves your legs? It may not seem like the manliest thing to do, but it can help, especially with ankle taping.

If you’re looking to shave your ankles for ankle taping, we recommend there are athletic tape and these razors to make sure there are no cuts or bumps.


Soccer players shave their legs because they need to put athletic tape on their skin directly. Hair follicles will be pulled out from the tape, causing a painful experience if the soccer players decide not to shave.

Players who don’t shave their legs often have to wear pre-wrap, which often slides when a player’s leg gets sweaty. Having the tape applied directly to the skin can help for stability purposes.

Male soccer players shaving their legs may not seem like the most masculine thing to do; however, the long-term benefits are worth doing if you’re consistently getting your ankle taped.

Do you think soccer players shaving their legs is weird or wrong? Let us know in the comment section below!

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