The main piece of attire that wrestlers wear is their singlet. Its slippery nature helps wrestlers avoid being grabbed by their opponent during a match. But, have you ever wondered what wrestlers wear under them?

Wrestlers usually wear briefs under their singlets, but some choose to wear a jockstrap or nothing underneath. Wrestlers will also wear wrestling shoes, mouthguards, headgear, and elbow and knee pads.

The rest of this article will cover what else wrestlers wear and why. I’ll also delve into why wrestlers don’t wear certain types of clothing and how these clothing choices impact wrestling performance. So, what do wrestlers wear under their singlets?

Why Wrestlers Wear Minimal or No Clothing Under Singlets

Wrestlers wear singlets simply because they’re the best uniform for the sport. Singlets stick close to a wrestler’s skin and prevent wrestlers from grabbing each other’s uniforms, an illegal move.

Wrestlers wear minimal or no clothing under their singlets to deter grabbing another wrestler’s clothes and thus help prevent injuries. For example, wrestlers risk injury from getting their fingers stuck in an opponent’s clothes when grappling. Singlets avoid this by being skin-tight on wrestlers.

Singlets have traditionally been the standard uniform for wrestlers due to their tightness, which improves both performances and deters injuries from occurring.

Types of Singlets

Singlets come in a couple of different varieties. What type of singlet one chooses depends on how they’re cut. Here are the three types of singlets: 

  • High-cut singlets. These are the traditional singlets and are what Olympic athletes wear to compete. They’re called high cuts due to how high they sit on an athlete’s body. High-cuts come up far on the body, leaving some room exposed around the armpits and underneath the neck.
  • FILA cut singlets. These are similar to high-cut singlets. Both come up relatively high on the wrestler’s body. FILA singlets, however, don’t come up as far as high-cut ones. They leave more room exposed under the neck and around the armpits.
  • Low cut singlets. These are the most revealing singlet and have significant cuts on the chest, sides, and back. They’re banned from the Olympics and most amateur and professional wrestling organizations.

Best Singlets for Wrestlers

  • Asics Men’s Snap Down Wrestling Singlet: This singlet has a snap closure for easy changing and anti-odor properties to help keep the funk to a minimum. They’re made with a flat lock stitching that offers a very supportive fit.
  • adidas Wide Side Panel Lycra Wrestling Singlet: Made with a wide side panel for maximum comfort. It’s cut a quad-length and the fit is incredibly comfortable. Offered in a wide variety of colors.
  • 4 Time Wrestling Singlet: Show off some personality in these high-quality, durable, and amazingly comfortable singlets. They’re great for all types of MMA, not just wrestling, and come in a range of bold patterns.
  • Gymskop Men’s Wrestling Singlets: Made from quality fabric, these singlets are flexible and durable enough to last for years. Fashionable designs offer a unique look.

What Else Wrestlers Wear

Singlets are the most recognizable part of a wrestler’s attire, but there’s more to their uniforms. Wrestlers wear singlets, wrestling shoes, mouthguards, headgear, and elbow and knee pads as part of their uniform. Singlets and shoes help with performance, while mouthguards, headgear, and pads protect wrestlers. But what else do they wear under their singlets?

When it comes to what wrestlers wear under their singlets, wrestlers have the choice of wearing cups, briefs, or nothing. Along with their singlets, they wear wrestling shoes and protective equipment to keep them safe while wrestling.

Wrestlers will wear specially designed wrestling shoes and safety equipment in addition to their singlets. Pieces of safety equipment include mouthguards, padding for the knees and elbows, and headgear. However, this will vary from wrestler to wrestler, as none of these are required.

Let’s take a deeper look at each piece of a wrestler’s uniform.

Wrestling Headgear

Wrestlers are often seen wearing headgear during their matches and training sessions. The purpose of headgear is to protect the face and ears of the competitors from slamming. Headgear can be broken into two different forms: Ear guards and face guards.

Wrestlers wear headgear to protect their face and ears from the slamming they experience. Headgear is divided into two types: Faceguards and ear guards. Ear guards are soft and cover the ears, preventing cauliflower ear. Faceguards, however, have stiffer padding and protect the face rather than the ears.

Ear guards fit over a competitor’s ears. These cups are then held in place by straps that go over, around, and under the head. They’re used to help protect the ears from slams.

Faceguards in wrestling are similar to faceguards in boxing. They’re padded and cover a wrestler’s face, protecting against wrestling matches. They fit on by straps.

Best Headgear for Wrestlers

Some of the best headgears for wrestlers, purchasable on Amazon, include:

Wrestling Shoes

An integral part of a wrestler’s uniform is their shoes. Wrestlers have a specific type of shoe they wear during matches. Wrestling shoes are similar to boxing shoes but different in particular ways. Like boxing shoes, wrestling shoes are lightweight and breathable to allow quick movement. Unlike boxing shoes, wrestling shoes provide greater ankle support.

Wrestling shoes allow wrestlers to remain light on their feet while also providing good traction. They also offer a lot of ankle support while being unrestrictive to ankle movement.

Another function of wrestling shoes is preventing infection. Wrestling mats can be host to parasites and other foreign bodies. Should these enter a wrestler’s foot, it can cause infection. Wrestling shoes prevent this, however.

Best Shoes for Wrestlers

Some of the best shoes for wrestlers, also purchasable on Amazon, include:

  • Adidas Performance Men’s Adizeros: These shoes make the list because they’re both lightweight and breathable while also granting a wrestler the necessary grip. 
  • ASICS Men’s JB Elites: These shoes are inspired by the wrestling champion Jordan Burroughs and built with tournament regulations in mind. They’re lightweight, breathable, and allow for quick movement.
  • ASICS Men’s Split Second 9: Like the other shoes on this list, the Split Seconds are lightweight, breathable, and provide a good grip on the mat. 


Mouthguards are standard in any combat sports, not only wrestling. They’re used to protect wrestlers’ mouths, tongues, and teeth. Should a wrestler not wear one, they risk potentially cutting their mouths.

Mouthguards are designed to protect wrestlers’ mouths, tongues, and teeth. Without them, wrestlers run the risk of potentially injuring their mouths. They secure to the teeth of wrestlers and help soften impacts a wrestler may face.

These, along with the other safety equipment wrestlers wear, ensure they avoid injuries.

Elbow and Knee Pads

Elbow and knee pads are other commonly worn pieces of equipment in wrestling. They both serve the same purpose, to cushion falls and prevent friction burns, albeit for different areas. Pads allow wrestlers to slide for takedowns and avoid injuries when falling awkwardly.

Elbow and knee pads serve the same function. They’re soft and cushioned, allowing wrestlers to fall onto their knees and elbows without damaging them. Pads also help prevent friction burns when a wrestler slides across the mat.

Both elbow and knee pads work by providing cushioning to the wrestlers’ joints. This soft material allows for falls without injury. Pads also will enable a wrestler to slide across the mat without burning their skin.

Best Elbow and Knee Pads for Wrestlers

Some of the best elbow and knee pads for wrestlers available on Amazon are:

Final Thoughts

Wrestlers wear singlets, wrestling shoes, and protective equipment as part of their uniforms. Singlets are worn because they prevent athletes from grabbing each other and also prevent injuries. Wrestling shoes are worn to allow quick and fluid movement while also giving wrestlers traction and ankle support.

Underneath singlets, wrestlers can wear briefs, a cup, or nothing at all. Most wrestlers opt for briefs since they’re inconspicuous, don’t get bundled up, and are comfortable during matches.

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