10 Odd Facts About Olympic Uniforms
An exciting event is underway, but all you can do is gawk at a dimpled track suit, aerodynamic helmet or a sequined swimsuit—sound familiar? Plenty of innovative, unique, and sometimes strange components make up Olympic uniforms. We recently did some research on the oddest Olympic outfits and wanted to share with you the most bizarre things we learned.
- The aerodynamic helmets worn by cyclists competing in the triathlon and time trail don’t have head cooling air vents—yikes!
- Earlier this year, the International Olympic Committee changed its rule regarding mandatory bikini uniforms for beach volleyball players, opening up the sport to nations that typically forbid women to show that much skin. Women now have the option to wear shorts and sleeved or sleeveless tops.
- When it comes to synchronized swimming, sequins and head ornaments are permitted in the pool. Swimmers also use a small clip of hard plastic or wire with a thin rubber coating to stop water from entering the nose during underwater movements.
- Synchronized swimmers also use a lot of hair gel. It's actually a special gelatin that’s applied as a warm, thick paste, which hardens as it cools, and stays firm in the cold water of the pool.
- This year, Nike designed new Team USA track suits that are more aerodynamically efficient due to dimpled patterned patches that are located on the forearms and legs, the fastest-moving parts of the body during a sprint.
- The track suits are also environmentally friendly, as they’re made in part from recycled water bottles.
- A top-end fencing uniform, which includes mask, jacket, pants, gloves, and chest protector, can set you back upwards of $1,000.
- Speedo’s famous full-body LZR swimsuits made with 50-percent polyurethane were banned after the 2008 summer games, critics deeming them more water vessel than swimsuit.
- The swimsuit worn at this year’s summer games has such a tight fit that users such as Michael Phelps need a special pair of grippy gloves just to pull it on.
- The hand grips worn by male and female gymnasts have built-in dowels that allow the athletes to have a firm grip on the bars or rings, and make high flying movements possible.
Read more: Odd Olympic Uniforms Explained
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