Why Do Cyclists Shave Their Legs? Top 5 Reasons

There are many traditions and trends associated with cyclists. And what I have particularly noticed is that well-seasoned cyclists mostly have clean-shaved legs.

While watching a cycling tournament on television or anywhere else, cyclists’ legs are very easily noticed.

As they pedal in an attractive and somewhat effortless manner, my eyes have severally caught their hairless and well-defined legs. After making this observation many times, I began to wonder why do cyclists shave their legs?

After doing my research and making extensive findings, I came across satisfactory answers to the question. 

Here we will shed light on the reasons for most pro cyclists choosing to keep their legs and even arms hairless when cycling.

Reasons Why Cyclists Need to Shave Their Legs

There are different reasons for this tradition among cyclists.

Before you grab a razor and shave your legs and arms, especially for those who’d prefer keeping their hair, read through the reasons provided in this article.

By the time you’re done with it, you should be able to determine whether you should shave your leg hairs or not.

Here are some of the common reasons why cyclists shave their leg and arm hairs:

1. Improves Your Aerodynamic

Lots of research has been done to improve the efficiency of cyclists when riding against resisting wind.

One of the discoveries made is that clean-shaven legs actually help to reduce the overall resistive effect of riding against the wind.

Simply said, hairless legs provide better aerodynamics.

2. Recovery from Road Rash

After a rigorous cycling exercise, you may experience road rash.

It’s believed that recovery from a road rash is quicker on hairless legs or arms.

3. Massages After the Ride

Post-ride massage is one of the answers to the question why cyclists shave their legs.

A good massage improves blood circulation and consequently leads to the removal of toxins and lactic acid from the massaged area.

These massages, done with the use of topical lotions and oils, make it easier for the cyclist’s muscles to endure and recuperate from the stress of pedaling.

Usually, such massages are more effective when the leg is hairless. This is because the massage oils go straight into the muscle without being interrupted by any hairs.

4. Makes It Easier to Get Tanned

When you frequently ride your cheap bicycle in the sun with a pair of biking shorts on, a visible tan line starts to form.

Those who are really into cycling take pride in their distinctive tan lines.

This is because the tan lines are evidence of their consistent biking and accumulated experience. Tan lines are actually easier to get and are also more visible on shaved legs.

5. Everybody is Doing It

When you analyze sporting exercises that have been around for quite some time, it’s common to observe some traditions or trends that have been passed down for many generations.

Even when the original reason for making such traditions is unclear. Shaving both the legs and arms has also become a sort of tradition that many cyclists adopt today.

It’s like a symbol of professionalism and serious-mindedness in all bike friendly cities all over the world. So, if you don’t mind shaving your legs and arms clean, you can also join in the trend.

Where to Stop

Before you start shaving your legs, you’d likely want to know where to stop with the shaving.

I would recommend shaving your legs up to where the leg gripper is located. It makes sense to simply remove hairs on just the exposed parts of the legs.

However, if you’d like to go beneath the shorts and remove all hairs, you’re free to do so. Individual preference is permitted.

Hair Removal Tips for Cyclists

Here are some of the effective ways to remove hairs from your legs and arms:

Normal Razor


There are razors designed for men and those designed for women. Both of them are most effective in different parts of the body.

For instance, shaving arched areas of the body like the legs is better done with women’s razors. When it comes to shaving hair off the face, a men’s razor is better.

Both women’s and men’s razors can be purchased at affordable prices. They are widely available at shops and malls across the country. You can also order them online.


Depending on how much hair you’re shaving, you may need a lot of disposable razors.

This is because disposable razors don’t last so long – especially when used on wide surface areas.

Electric Razor


This is a more efficient method of shaving. An electric razor is usually durable and you can conveniently use them without having to get a new one every time.

Electric shavers save you the stress of manual razor shaving. They work faster and produce a clean result.


Since these razors require electrical power to function, you need to have them fully charged.

If you’re going on a journey, and there’s no means of charging the razor at the destination, you need to make sure that it’s well-charged before then.

Other disadvantages include noisy operation (sometimes) and a high cost of purchase.



These creams have certain advantages over waxing and razor shaving.

For instance, the pains associated with first-time waxing won’t be experienced when using hair removal cream.

The process of application is also easy and straightforward. These creams are widely available for purchase at affordable prices.


When using a hair removal cream, there shouldn’t be open wounds on the legs or arms.

This is because the chemical-based cream could cause adverse effects if it gets into an open wound. For hair removal creams to be effective, the hair should be significantly moisturized.

Leaving the cream on your skin for a lengthy period could also cause adverse effects like skin burn.



Unlike razors, not that many people use waxing for hair removal. However, the working principle of wax strips makes them a really good method of hair removal.

Wax strips are able to pull out the entire hair strand from the roots instead of only cutting partial lengths of the hair strands.

The final result from hair removal through waxing is quite impressive; the legs are fresh and the pores become more breathable. Waxing hurts less as it’s done from time to time. It also becomes faster and more effective.


Considering the fact that wax strips work by sticking to hair, your leg hairs must be at a significant length before they can be successfully waxed.

This means that if you wax your leg hairs now, you’d have to wait till they grow to a significant length before you can wax again. Waxing also hurts a lot when you try it for the first time.


Clearly, there are different reasons that answer the question why cyclists shave their legs.

Whatever reason appeals to you most, shaving the legs seems typically advantageous for cycling.

However, there’s a good chance that most cyclists adopt this tradition based on the need to look professional, experienced, and dedicated.

Because so many other cyclists do it, you may feel a bit “out of place” if you have hairy legs.

Shailen Vandeyar

A proud Indian origin Kiwi who loves to plant trees and play with my pet bunny when not out cycling through the best routes, reviewing the latest gear, and sharing tips on everything biking.

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