Why do rugby players wear a headguard?


We get asked all the time “Why do rugby players wear a headguard?”

A headguard is a soft shell protective helmet worn by rugby players. Originally designed for forwards to provide protection against cauliflower ears rugby headguards are now worn by players of all positions, even those who don’t play in the scrum. Don’t believe us? Why not check out our World XV of famous players wearing scrum caps.

Note:  Governing body World Rugby make it very clear that the purpose of a rugby headguard is to prevent cuts and abrasions. There is no medical evidence to suggest wearing a rugby headguard prevents concussion.

But there are still 3 very good reasons rugby players should wear a headguard.

1. A rugby headguard can prevent lacerations and abrasions

Us rugby players are a curious breed. We will put our head where it hurts for the greatness of our team.

Our head is a precious thing and we only have one, so why wouldn’t we want to ensure we give it a little protection.

The head typically has less flesh than many other parts of the body. That means many blood vessels are close to the surface. Just a small cut or abrasion can cause profuse bleeding.

Wearing a rugby headguard when playing rugby can help absorb, deflect and spread the forces of many of the impacts that can result in cuts or abrasions to the head.

2. A rugby headguard can prevent cauliflower ears

3. A rugby headguard offers more protection than tape

Isn’t strange that players throughout the world are willing to protect their feet with the latest boots from adidas or Nike at the cost of £100 or more, yet they rely on a £1/€1/$1 roll of electrical insulation tape to protect their ears.

For sure the tape sticks your ears to the side of your head to prevent them getting hammered or even worse prevent a tear during a severe impact.

A rugby headguard offers all-enveloping head protection. The physical properties of impact absorbing foam offer far more protection than a bit of sticky tape.