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Essential Gear for New Wrestlers

Part of the fun of starting a new sport is getting the right gear. When your child takes up wrestling, they will need to wear shoes and clothing appropriate for competition and practice. You don’t need to buy a lot. A few essential items will help keep your new wrestler safe and make them feel like a champ. Here are a few items that every wrestler needs.


Good shoes will support an athlete’s feet and ankles and provide the traction to keep them from slipping. Kids wrestling shoes are specifically designed for young wrestlers and are different from regular gym shoes. Look for a pair of shoes with ample flexibility, feels light in weight, has a sock-like fit, and includes mesh for breathability.


A singlet is a one-piece garment with a tight fit. Your child may be required to wear a singlet during competitions, but you can generally wear a T-shirt and shorts for practice. Singlets are usually made from nylon and spandex and allow for freedom of movement. A singlet may be provided if your child is on a school team.


Wrestling headgear protects athletes from the head and ear injuries during practice and competition. The headgear should have a snug but comfortable fit. Ear cups are often made from a rigid material and lined with foam padding. Some headgear is made entirely of foam, and this type of protection is usually adequate for beginners. It’s important to get headgear that fits appropriately. Look for youth sizes to ensure the best protection for your child.

Beyond the Basics

Depending on your child’s team, you may need to purchase a few more specialty items. Even if they aren’t a part of the team’s requirements, the following items can make wrestling more comfortable and safe.

  • Headcover: For wrestlers with long hair, a covering worn beneath their headgear helps keep hair out of the way.
  • Mouthguard: This piece of equipment offers protection from cuts and abrasions for athletes with braces on their teeth.
  • Lace covers: Wrestlers need to secure their shoelaces during competitions. Athletic tape works in a pinch, but covers can also be purchased if your shoes don’t have them built-in.

Every team or school will have different rules for outfitting new wrestlers. You’ll need to check with your coach to see exactly what your child needs to start. With just a few pieces of essential equipment, your child will be on the way to learning and having fun in wrestling.

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