Shaving as Pre-Game Ritual

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According to Dr. Rob Bell, assistant professor at Ball State University and a certified sport psychologist, following a gameday or weekly routine leads to a better-focused, more relaxed athlete, ready to perform. Find out why these five pros lather up when prepping for battle.

Ray Rice Michael Phelps Derek Jeter Phil Hughes Ray Allen
Baltimore Ravens, RB U.S. Olympic Swimmer New York Yankees, SS New York Yankees, P Boston Celtics, SG
Game-day shaving is a must for Rice. Aside from making him "nice and smooth," the ritual ensure he's "good to go." The 14-time gold medalist shaves his entire body the day before a competition. Phelps says it makes him feel smooth and more aerodynamic. Jeter ditches his five o'clock shadow daily to comply with team policy, which requires that all players be clean shaven. Unlike Jeter, this Yank risks a fine since he doesn't shave on days he's scheduled to pitch. Hughes says when sweat drips on his clean cut face, it causes him to itch and lose focus. After stretching precisely at 3:45 p.m. on game days, Allen shaves his entire head before walking on the court to warm up at exactly 4:30 p.m.

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