Exercise and Workouts After a Hair Transplant Surgery

23 Jan, 2024

Taking proper care of your newly transplanted hair is essential especially during the first 3-4 weeks after the procedure, whether it's a Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) or a Follicular Unit Transplant (FUT). It is crucial to avoid any strenuous activity for the first 4 weeks after any hair transplant. It is imperative to ensure full recovery before engaging in intense activities such as hitting the gym or participating in strenuous exercise. This precaution is necessary to achieve the desired results of the hair transplant. Continue reading to understand the timeline for returning to the gym and the potential risks that should be avoided.

When Can I Exercise After a Hair Transplant?

The recovery process after a hair transplant is simple but requires patience. To optimize the healing and rooting of grafts, it is advisable to wait at least one month before returning to the gym, lifting weights, or engaging in strenuous exercise.

  • 1-week post-surgery:

  • Patients are encouraged to rest for a minimum of 7 days after the surgery to allow proper healing and attachment of hair grafts. During this period, avoiding sweating and direct sunlight is crucial. After the initial rest period, light exercises such as gentle walking are permissible, provided they do not strain the skin around the transplant area. Activities causing sweat, including intimate relations, should be avoided to prevent irritation.

  • 2 weeks post-surgery:

  • Scalp healing typically occurs within 10-14 days post-hair transplant surgery, permitting the inclusion of more vigorous exercises beyond gentle walking. It is recommended to start with a lighter exercise regimen than usual and gradually increase intensity. To prevent scarring, activities more strenuous than walking should be postponed until the scalp is fully healed. Consulting with the clinic or hair transplant surgeon is essential to ensure proper healing before engaging in demanding activities like weightlifting or pull-ups.

  • 4 weeks post-surgery:

  • After four weeks, recipients can resume strenuous exercise if their doctor confirms complete healing of hair grafts. This includes cardio workouts, swimming, weightlifting, and even team or contact sports. Some shedding of transplanted hair may occur, which is a normal part of the healing process, indicating healthy graft healing around this time.

What are the Risks of Exercising After a Hair Transplant Too Soon?

When you've invested time and resources in a cosmetic procedure, it's crucial to wait until it's safe to resume exercise to avoid compromising the health of the graft transplant site. Here's our recommended advice on what to avoid in the initial weeks post-hair transplant surgery.

  1. Sweating

  2. During the healing phase after a hair transplant, excessive sweating should be avoided. Sweat can lead to itchiness, and itching may dislodge the grafts. If sweating occurs, carefully dab it away to prevent the risk of tearing out new hair roots that have not yet firmly anchored to the scalp.

  3. Dislodging Hair Grafts

  4. In the first 3-5 days post-surgery, hair grafts are vulnerable to dislodging. It is crucial not to disturb the transplanted area with impacts, pulling, or straining during this period. Dislodged grafts may result in bleeding at the transplant area, damaging hair follicle roots and hindering proper hair growth.

  5. Straining

  6. Strenuous activities can increase pressure on the scalp, impacting the healing transplanted area and potentially causing grafts to pop out. It is advisable to take it easy and rest during the initial days following surgery.

  7. Infection

  8. In the early recovery days, hair grafts are susceptible to infection. Maintaining good hygiene by keeping bedding, towels, and anything that may contact the scalp clean is crucial. Consultation with the hair transplant surgeon is recommended before swimming, as exposure to seawater or chlorinated pool water may damage hair follicles, and natural water may harbor bacteria causing infection.

  9. Blood Pressure

  10. Exercise elevates heart rate and blood pressure. Until the transplant area fully heals (at least 4 weeks), avoiding high blood pressure is advisable to prevent bleeding that can damage newly transplanted follicles.

  11. Sunlight

  12. Newly transplanted hair follicles are sensitive to UV radiation. It is recommended to avoid direct sunlight in the initial 7 days after transplantation. Wearing wide and loose-fitting hats or hoods outdoors can protect the healing scalp.

  13. Wearing a Helmet

  14. Avoid wearing a helmet or protective headgear if the transplanted scalp area is still healing. Sweat accumulation and potential bacterial contamination in unsanitized helmets may cause scalp irritation and itching, compromising the healing process.

Should I Consult My Hair Transplant Advisor Before Resuming Gym Activities?

As an integral part of the transplantation process and postoperative care, your consultant will provide detailed guidance on healing timelines and when it is safe to reintroduce regular exercise. Depending on individual cases, some individuals may be able to resume their typical workout routines within a few weeks, while others may require additional weeks for complete healing, ensuring optimal outcomes. If you are certain that both your grafts and donor area have fully healed, you may choose to resume your exercise routine after consulting your clinic.