Aug 17, 2021
Ouch! Yep, that’s the sound that I would make in the shower after a long run or long race. That awful rash that you just don’t notice until the water hits it.
What is this?
This was the first thought that came to my mine after completing my marathon and showering. In that moment I realized whatever this was it didn’t like the water. It was later that realized that this rash was right where my camelback sat on my shoulder. Then it clicked in my head as I remembered that as the camelback got lighter through the race the more it was moving up and down on my shoulder, rubbing back and forth on my shoulder. However, it took several years later after experiencing chafing in other areas that I realized it was more than just having a camelback on my back.
So, what is chafing?
Chafing is a skin problem that is caused by friction, moisture and some type of irritating fabric.
Typically chafing occurs from prolonged rubbing and friction of a fabric to your skin.
It typically shows up as a mild red rash developing from the friction. However, if the chafing persist it can cause bleeding and crusting of the skin.
Yep exactly. So how do you avoid this irritating rash?
In some cases chafing can be prevented and sometimes chafing can still occur.
Follow these 7 tips to help prevent chafing:
Antiperspirant can prevent sweating before problems occur. Apply a thin layer of deodorant to areas you know are more prone to chafing.
Applying a thin layer of lubricant (creams, oils and powders) can provide protection to areas that are more predisposed to chafing.
- Moisture-wicking clothing
Have you ever heard; Cotton is Rotten? Cotton retains sweat and moisture and keeps your skin damp which increases your chance of more friction. Wear clothes that allow your skin to breathe.
- Proper fitting clothes and additional items
Clothes or any additional items you may wear that are big can move a lot which can cause friction. Wear clothes that fit properly to avoid a lot of movement and friction on the skin.
- Soft bandages
For areas you know that will cause irritation; apply a thin bandage to help protect that area from friction.
- Remove wet clothes
After completing a workout or run you may want to go eat something or may choose to sit around. However, sitting with clothes that are wet can cause irritation to the skin. Make sure you remove wet clothing as soon as possible. Wet clothing increase dampness on skin which can cause irritation to the skin.
- Plan for the weather
If you are a sweater, try to plan training or running when it’s cooler or at times where the humidity and temps are not as high.
Chafing can be aggravating and prevented. Use these valuable tips to avoid the awful shower experience of this unfriendly red rashes. Remember, there are some things we can control and other things we cannot control. Take time out to implement the things you can change.
By: Felicia. R. Hall @feliciarhall
Felicia is an educator and motivator at heart. Felicia is a Certified Athletic Trainer, Corrective Exercise Specialist, Run & Fitness Coach, RYT 200 Yoga Instructor, Educator and a doctoral candidate. She is a small-town girl who loves running, nature and helping others become the best version of themselves.