With endless information at your fingertips where do you start?
Most people jump on Google or turn to Reddit and run various searches for the best BJJ soap to prevent ringworm. The problem is, with so much conflicting information out there it is hard to figure out what actually works and why. Aggressive marketing and a modern fear of bacteria has has lead to the belief that killing bacteria is the best to protect your skin from bacterial, fungal or even viral skin infection. Wrestlers, Grapplers and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioners especially find themselves in the unique situation of having to constantly worry about these nasty bugs, because of the environment they love to call home, the mat.
No one can argue that you get pretty up close and personal with your training partners or competitors. It is as much a part of the game as is the blood, sweat and tears that come from the hours of training you must invest to progress. A long time ago I heard the saying you either win or you learn. This could not be more true when it comes to your skin care. Athletes are up against the wall to maintain a strict hygiene regiments in an effort to not become the one person who spreads an infection to their entire team or school. Several of the most common skin infections include Ringworm (Tinea corporis), Impetigo, MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) or staph, herpes, jock itch and athlete's foot. These skin infections while very small can sideline an athlete from training and competition due to how easily they spread.
Can a wrestler, Grappler or BJJ practitioner go to extremes in an attempt to keep themselves clean and unknowingly make themselves susceptible to contracting the very infections they are trying to prevent? The unfortunate answer is, yes. These nasty bugs flourish in the very warm, humid environments athletes train and compete in day in and day out. The hours spent training to improve your craft similarly mean exposure to the bugs that flourish in that type of environment. Methods of prevention, some of which are still followed today, include straight bleach, the use of harmful chemicals or covering up the exposed area. All of these are the worst possible solutions. The lack of treatment can often lead to unintended health risks and transmission of the infection. Luckily, it has become a common best practice to remove yourself from training or competing until the skin infection has resolved itself.
Finding a resolution typically means a trip to the doctor for the appropriate medication or topical cream and time off the mat. However, prevention is always better than treatment. Practicing good hygiene and using a quality soap are the number one way to protect yourself from the possible skin infections you may get while training. Just as any true black belt has been tried and tested over the course of time you will not find any black belt that only has one method to attack a problem. They rely on their hours of training and experience when presented with challenges both new and old.
Herein lies the challenge of most soap makers: to develop a soap that can both defend and protect your skin. When choosing which soap you add to your arsenal you want a product that can produce consistent, reliable results no matter what. At Contact Sports Soap we have done this by harnessing natural, effective probiotics that are safe and healthy for both you the user and our environment. Our products are non-gmo, plant based (vegan), cruelty free and sustainable. The best part is our soap rinses clean so you don't feel any residue left over from your training once you towel off. You never have to worry about the consistency of our product because we lab test it to very specific standards and if it does not pass it never makes it to your door.