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I believe just about every long distance runner, hiker, and many more sports enthusiasts have run into the ever long problem of chafing: enter image description here

caused by constant rubbing of another part of the skin—two thighs, for example.

source

What are some preventative measures that can be conducted in order to prevent chafing? Are these techniques universal to all sports/activities or are these specific measures that need to be considered for each sport?

note: I went hiking the other day, and even with my 'under armor' spandex I had some chafing in the upper thigh area

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Great question, now that my runs are becoming 2+ hours I'm getting similar problems that you don't notice after shorter runs. –  Ivo Flipse Jun 2 '11 at 18:46
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Man, and I thought just losing weight would take care of all my chafing problems... –  Berin Loritsch Jun 2 '11 at 19:46
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6 Answers 6

Lubricate! Here's a good article from LiveStrong regarding exercise chaffing

If you already have chaffing, a rash, or know that you are prone to chaffing, use a skin lubricant. Usually, regular petroleum jelly will help to lubricate the area but other products such as Runner's Lube, Body Glide and Sportslick can help, according to Time-to-Run.com. Using a talcum powder can also help to absorb moisture and reduce chaffing, according to an article in the Chicago Tribune.

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That's going to rub/sweat off if you're doing long distances –  Joe Philllips Jun 2 '11 at 21:19
    
@Joe you'd be surprised how well a blob of vaseline works. I only need a tiny amount to last a whole marathon –  rmx Jun 3 '11 at 9:49
    
If you wear sunscreen is that enough to prevent chafing? If not, should you put vaseline on before or after sunscreen? –  L1th1um Jun 3 '11 at 19:22
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These may help you

1. Stay Hydrated

Your body will have lot of fluid to sweat off and hence lubricating the area; and reducing the friction.

2. Clothing

This very important one, avoid clothes that have lot of seems, which are loose. Wear proper under garments which have snug fit. I have would prefer cotton inner garments.

3. Stay Dry

If you are sweating then lubricate the area, otherwise completely keep the area dry.

4. Lubricant If you are sweating keep that area lubricated so that there wouldn't be any salt(from sweat) deposits, which would lead to friction and chafing.

Treatment

Wash the area with soap and cool to luke warm water. Apply some antibacterial ointment or antiseptic spray and cover it with bandaid. For more information.

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Let's try to prevent just posting links. Try summarizing them and explaining what they say. This isn't meant to be a 'link library'. –  KronoS Jun 2 '11 at 18:59
    
Isn't sweat one of the key factors that leads to chafing? –  Evan Plaice Jun 2 '11 at 21:12
    
Wait - Isn't 1 in conflict with 3 and 4? –  Kevin Vermeer Jun 6 '11 at 1:55
    
I know, but its like either of one of it –  Kirk Hammett Jun 6 '11 at 8:25
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Check out products like Body Glide, Assos cream, or plain old vaseline. Each has specific uses or uses that are better than others. For instance, Body glide is great for feet to prevent blisters on runs and also works well to prevent rub burns when using a wetsuit in swims. The Assos cream (and other chamois creams) are excellent for cycling and also fend off the "funk".

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+1 for Body Glide. New Balance carries a Body Glide branded stick that I've been using for months. –  Chrisbloom7 Jun 3 '11 at 5:53
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I find that compression shorts help me reduce chafing when biking. The spandex in the typical ones tend to wick away moisture to keep things dry enough to minimize chafing. I've been obese enough that just ordinary walking would abrade the hairs off my inner thighs.

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Are you wearing the compression shorts under (or over) biking shorts, or instead of biking shorts? I suggest liner shorts over compression shorts, like these from Nashbar for biking, if you're not wearing ordinary bike shorts. –  Kevin Vermeer Jun 6 '11 at 1:54
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It's the arms and sholders that cause the shirt to move and cause the chafing. I like to wear a tight polyester tank-top shirt under another shirt when running. With underwear and socks I just tried many kinds until I found some that were tight enough to stay in place but confortable.

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My meaty thighs rub together quite a bit and I've found that cutting the "legs" off of some spandex shorts and wearing them over my thigh is the only thing to stop that from happening. I've tried BodyGlide, MilkButter, etc. It all wears off. Spandex doesn't.

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