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Physical Education

Personal hygiene

Personal hygiene is another way of being the best you can be. No one likes sweaty armpits or greasy hair and apart from it being unattractive, poor hygiene affects performance and can even cause infections. Commonly, sports-related infections are fungal based and include the appropriately named ‘athlete’s foot.’

Elements of personal hygiene

Hygiene is the way we take care of ourselves to stay healthy: showering after sport, trimming our nails, and changing into clean clothes regularly. Good personal hygiene is an important part of a sportsperson’s routine. It helps to prevent infection which can otherwise affect performance.

Two common sports-related infections are:

Athlete's Foot

athlete's foot

Athlete's foot. Picture courtesy of Jean-Francois VIAU

This is a fungal infection. It is usually cracked skin and itchiness between the toes which can be treated by washing and drying well, then coating with fungicidal cream or powder.


Verrucae are caused by a virus and are usually warts on the sole of the foot. Treat with mild acid cream or solution, or seek medical advice.

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