What's the essential water polo gear you'll need to play the game? Water polo became popular in England in the late 1800s and it spread to other countries, especially the United States. You need to be a great swimmer and team player. Here's a quick guide to the essential gear you're required to wear and have in the water.
- Ball The ball is the first important piece of water polo gear you'll need. The water polo ball is made with easy-to-grip material. It's designed to float on the water's surface. Each type of water polo sport requires a specially colored ball that's easily seen in the water. Since the sport is played by men, women and children, the color and size of the ball is appropriate for the players in the game. Balls are typically yellow with either a black, red, green or blue stripe. The stripe's color depends on who the players are. The ball's size is slightly higher for men than women and junior players. Water polo balls for men are 28 inches, while women use 26.5 inch balls.
- Caps Caps are essential for water polo. The caps fit securely over the player's head and ears. It's designed to protect the player's ears from becoming water-logged. Goalie caps are colored differently than regular position players. The caps also distinguish the teams from each other.
- Swim Gear Swim gear is essential for each player. Freedom to move in the water is necessary. Men wear speedo-type swim gear and women wear one-piece bathing suits. The women's suit is usually made with a zipper back.
- Mouthpieces or Guards Protecting the mouth and teeth from injury is very important in water polo. It can be dangerous going after the ball. Mouth guards are essential gear that keeps all players safe. As with any contact sport, water polo is very actively and aggressively played.