Safety

Wrestling Safety Tips

Headgear

Wearing a headgear will help prevent trauma to the cartilage in the ear. This trauma can cause deformity commonly known as cauliflower ear. Although some may think cauliflower ear is cool or the brand of a wrestler, it is very painful and can keep wrestlers out of competition until healed. Wrestlers are required to wear headgear in competition. Wrestlers should always wear headgear in practice as well.

Mouth Piece

Wearing a mouth piece while wrestling will protect teeth. Some studies have shown that wearing a mouth piece may also prevent concussion in sports. Wrestlers with braces are required to wear a mouth piece in competition that covers all braces on top and bottom teeth.

Warm up and Stretching

In order to prevent muscle injury, it is important to warm up and stretch properly at the beginning of each practice and competition. It is also recommended to stretch as part of a cool down after practice or competition. This helps to prevent injury as well as increase flexibility needed for optimal performance.

Skin Infection

Conditions such as tinea, and impetigo infections are common in all sports and not life threatening.Wrestlers with contagious skin infections are not permitted to wrestle until they are considered noncontagious by a physician (usually 5-10 days with treatment depending on the condition). Skin checks are done by officials before each competition. Wrestlers should check themselves before each practice. Skin infections can be lessened through proper hygiene. Shower immediately after each practice with soap and always use a clean towel. Always wear clean practice gear or competition uniform. All cuts, scrapes and open sores or wounds should be clean and covered while wrestling. Products such as Kenshield and Matguard can be used to clean skin and prevent skin infections. Mats should be washed before each practice or competition with an antibacterial detergent or bleach.

Supervision

It is important to have proper supervision when wrestling. Coaches and officials play a huge part in injury prevention during live wrestling. It is not in the nature of many wrestlers to give up in a position even though it may cause injury. It is often up to supervising officials and coaches to see and stop potentially dangerous situations.

Weight Loss

Rapid weight loss and dehydration can not only negatively impact a wrestler's performance, it can also cause dangerous health issues. Due to intense physical exertion, wrestlers will lose water weight through perspiration during practice and competition. It is important that wrestlers rehydrate immediately after practice and competition in order to maintain optimal performance. Coaches should monitor wrestler's weight before and after practice to prevent rapid weight loss. In the past 10 years, mandatory weight certification procedures have become required in high school and college wrestling. Pre-season weight certifications test body fat and hydration to determine the lowest optimal weight at which a wrestler may compete. These standard have changed the way wrestling as a whole has managed weight loss. The sport is now safer due to mandatory weight certification.