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QOW - Exercise and Sweat After a New Tattoo

By October 7, 2007

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Q: Tuesday is my 18th [birthday] and I've been psyched for getting my first tattoo for the longest time [but] I am an athlete and I play basketball 5-6 days per week. I was wondering if sweating - a lot - would harm a fresh tattoo; for example, if I got the tattoo on a Friday and then ran on Monday. Would 3 days be long enough?

A: It kind of depends on where you get the tattoo. If you get it right on your shoulder blade where you'll be stretching that muscle a lot to throw the ball, it might cause some stress to a new tattoo. If you get something large that covers your calf, which is another area that is flexed a lot when running, it could be stressful to new ink. However, with really good care those first three days, it's more than likely that your tattoo would be okay as long as it's not a really large piece. The sweating won't be so much an issue as long as you shower immediately after playing and keep it clean and hydrated when you're not exercising. Just be careful with it and you should be fine.


October 8, 2007 at 12:22 am
(1) Gary says:

I just had a large piece 13 inch by 7 inch on by back and found that as long as I kept it lightly covered with ointmnet while working ( I sweat a bit at work) it was fine. That was 3 weeks ago and it looks fine. Clean and slightly moist (ointment) is the way to go

December 9, 2007 at 7:03 pm
(2) ashley says:

wow! this info helped alot! i just got a tattoo on my upper back, and im an avid biker. i knew that i wasnt really working out any muscles in my back so that wouldnt be an issue, but i was worried that my sweat would have negative effects. good to know im in the clear!

December 11, 2009 at 10:11 am
(3) Heather says:

same here! I just had one done last night on the back of my neck where I do sweat a lot. good to know I can still power yoga my way through. :o )

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