04 August, 2011
Regulations for Hair
Both the National Collegiate Athletic Association, which governs college wrestling, and the NFHS Wrestling Rules Committee, which regulates high school wrestling, have similar rules regarding appearance and hair. Wrestlers must have short hair that does not hang below a standard collar in the back. The rules also mandate short sideburns that descend no lower than the earlobe. Bandannas and hair nets are not permitted in competition. Due to these regulations, most wrestlers compete with a short style such as a buzz cut or crew cut. Although grabbing hair is strictly prohibited during competition, it can happen if you have a slightly longer cut.
Regulations for Facial Hair
According to the NCAA wrestling rule book, wrestlers must be cleanshaven and smooth, with no abrasive stubble that could injure another player. The rules permit a short mustache that does not hang down past the lips. Wrestlers with other facial hair, such as beards or long sideburns, can obtain a legal face mask which covers it safely.
Female wrestlers are encouraged to don short hair and are not allowed to wear barrettes or pins during a match, as per the rules of the International Federation of Associated Wrestling Styles. Male and female wrestlers who have long hair must braid it and coil it tightly into a hair cover or headpiece and cover it with a statutory helmet. A match will not be stopped if a woman's hair falls out of it's updo or helmet.
Sumo Wrestling Hairstyles
In the Japanese tradition of sumo wrestling, hair regulations are very different than in Western wrestling. Most sumo athletes have very long hair that is styled for competition by special hairdressers. The most common sumo hairstyle is the top knot, or chonmage, which features a large bun of hair on the top of the head. Sumo wrestlers have worn this style for centuries, theoretically to cushion the head from injury. When a wrestler retires, he undergoes an elaborate hair-cutting ceremony that treats his hair with appropriate reverence.
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