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Do You Wear Headgear for BJJ? Protecting Yourself on the Mats

No, you, generally, do not wear headgear for BJJ (Brazilian jiu jitsu). However, some bjj practitioners choose to wear head gear to avoid getting cauliflower ear or if they sustain any ear injuries that may lead to cauliflower ear.

Key Takeaways

  • Headgear in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is optional and up to the practitioner’s preference. It is not required to participate in bjj.
  • Generally official BJJ competitions (like the IBJJF) do not allow headgear.
  • Choosing appropriate BJJ headgear involves considering material, design, and training or competition rules.

Types of BJJ Headgear

Again, in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ), headgear serves to protect the practitioner’s head and ears. Headgear options vary, focusing on either full head protection or specific areas like the ears. They also come in harder or soft options.

Generally, softer headgear is recommended as opposed to harder for bjj. However, this is up to your preference.

FeatureHard Headgear (like Cliff Keen)Soft Headgear (like Gold BJJ)
MaterialHard plastic outer shellSoft, flexible materials
ProtectionHigh impact resistanceCushions against impacts
AdjustabilityAdjustable straps for fitElastic material for snug fit and velcro straps
ComfortMay feel bulkierGenerally more comfortable
VisibilityCan obstruct peripheral visionBetter peripheral vision
Ear ProtectionRigid protection for earsSoft cushioning for ears
Usage in BJJLess common due to rigidity but still sometimes usedMore common, less restrictive
IBJJF ComplianceTypically not allowedAlso not allowed
DurabilityVery durableLess durable than harder headgear
AestheticsMore noticeable, bulkier lookSleeker, less noticeable
comparing wrestling type headgear to softer head gear options

Wrestling Type Head Gear

Depending on preference some bjj athletes choose to wear a more wrestling style headgear like those from Cliff Keen.

These are the classic headgear that many wrestlers wear with cushioned, harder padding around ears and straps that are harder to adjust initially (but generally do not need to be adjusted continuously).

Softer Headgear Options

Other bjj students prefer softer headgear options like those from Matman, Gold BJJ, or Roar.

These still offer padding aroudn the ear but do not have any hard parts and often use velcro instead of the plastic straps often seen in wrestling type headgear.

Headgear Use in BJJ Competitions

In Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) competitions, the regulations surrounding the use of headgear can be decisive for competitors. Clarity on rules and personal choice are key factors in deciding whether to use headgear.

Official Tournament Rules

Most BJJ tournaments follow strict guidelines which generally prohibit the use of headgear during matches. Such regulations are enforced to:

  • Maintain uniformity in competitor attire.
  • Prevent any potential advantage that headgear might provide.
  • Eliminate risks of injuries due to potential entanglements.

Examples of tournament regulations include:

  • IBJJF (International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation): Headgear is not permitted during competition.
  • ADCC: headgear is also no permitted

Frequently Asked Questions

Is It Common to Wear Headgear in Brazilian jiu jitsu?

While not common, some practitioner’s choose to wear headgear for bjj to protect their ears from getting cauliflower ear. Wearing headgear is up to the preference of the athlete and not a requirement.

What types of headgear are recommended for BJJ practitioners?

BJJ practitioners typically use ear guards designed specifically for grappling sports. These are constructed to provide ample ear protection while allowing a range of motion and not inhibiting hearing.

Is headgear allowed in BJJ tournaments?

The use of headgear in BJJ tournaments varies by the organization hosting the event. Some allow it, while others do not. Competitors should check the rules of each specific tournament beforehand.

How can BJJ athletes prevent cauliflower ear?

To prevent cauliflower ear, BJJ athletes should wear protective ear guards or head gear during training, especially when drilling takedowns and escaping from headlocks, as these are situations where the ears may undergo trauma.

Are rugby headgear models suitable for BJJ training?

Rugby headgear models are not generally recommended for BJJ because they may not provide the necessary ear protection and can be bulky, interfering with grappling techniques.

What are the top rated headgear brands for BJJ?

Some top-rated brands for BJJ headgear known for their quality and durability include Cliff Keen, Gold BJJ, Matman, and ASICS. They offer various models designed to meet the needs of BJJ practitioners.

How should a BJJ headgear fit to ensure maximum protection?

A BJJ headgear should fit snugly without causing discomfort. There should be no movement of the headgear during training. It must remain secure around the ears and chin to provide effective protection.