Off-road biking is thrilling and adrenalin pumping sport for both spectators and participants. It is no tarmac racing; bikes skid and roll while racing at increasingly high speeds, building the spectators excitement with each close call. With the dirt, dust, mud and grime that cakes the bikes and the riders it is a sport that challenges even the most talented riders.
Due to the dangerous nature of the sport it is important that the bikers involved with off-road sports take care of their body to the best of their ability. One part of the body that is always receives a battering while racing, is the biker’s skin. Even though they are typically covering in protective off-road clothing, the bitting winds and harsh racing conditions can easily place a heavy toll on the skin. So if you are a professional racer with a tight yearly racing schedule, its time you thought about your skin.
Here are a few skin care tips for off road bike racers that will go a long way to protect your skin from the typical hazards of the sport.
Apply Sunscreen Liberally –For off road bikers, typically the only part of the body that is exposed to the elements is the face. When the wind blows on the face, there is a false sense of comfort because the sun does not feel as hot as it should be. In reality there is just as much of a chance of burning the skin of the face as if you were standing directly in the sun and exposed to the UV rays. The only solution is to liberally apply sunscreen over the exposed areas, preferably every two hours if possible.
Pay special attention to exposed areas like the neck, ears and nose. Men generally have large pores around the nose and this is where most of the skin’s oil is produced, which has a twofold effect. First, sunscreen dissolves more quickly around this area because of the oil requiring any lotion applied more often. Secondly, the sun reflects more strongly off the oil, making the area more liable to sunburns.
Stop using exfoliants – Exfoliating products like facial scrubs and serums are typically good for the skin, removing the dry skin cells on the surface. However, this process also increases the sensitivity of the skin, leaving the skin vulnerable to the dirt and dust of off-road racing. It is recommended racers refrain from exfoliating products at least three days before an event.
Wash skin thoroughly post event – After the event, wash your skin thoroughly with a natural soap that is free from sulphates and other harsh or abrasive chemicals. This will cleanse your skin of grime and debris from riding reducing any potential inflammation or acne. You can also use a cooling gel based mask with hydrating properties to lower skin irritation and redness caused by exposure to wind and sun. Finish with a moisturiser that will penetrate deep within the skin to leave it fresh, supple and healthy.
For professional off road bike racers, it is recommend you take advantage of the period between races to take special care of your skin. One of the best ways to do so is to visit a beauty salon for a series of skin rejuvenation treatments. An IPL machine or a microdermabrasion machine will gently remove the dead and dry skin cells on the surface, leaving the skin shiny and glowing. Going through this process once in a while is definitely required.
The importance of skin care for off road bike racers cannot be more overemphasised. Follow these tips to maintain a fresh glowing skin.