Around half of the world’s total population of 7 billion — caught at least one minute of the 2016 Olympic Games. And many sports fans play sports themselves — about 4% of the world’s population plays soccer! But not everyone knows interesting things about different kinds of sports, so many people don’t know why soccer players sometimes wear “bras” and why tennis players grunt.
We at Bright Side found out the answers to these questions and we were quite surprised by some of them.
Grunting gives tennis players an advantage.
As strange as it sounds, the first thing you immediately notice when watching a tennis game is the athletes grunting. Professionals say that grunting gives them a better chance at winning and research confirms this.
Most tennis players hit the ball when exhaling and grunting makes the hit more powerful. Besides, grunting at the moment of the hit doesn’t allow their competitor to hear the moment the ball contacts the racket. So, it’s harder for them to react to the hit and understand how powerful it was.
Soccer players sometimes wear special “bras” to improve the quality of their performance.
Sometimes, soccer players wear something that looks like a bra underneath their T-shirts. But they are not just bras, they are actual trackers that monitor heart rate, metabolism, their position on the field, and other data. It’s an entire system of trackers that allows the coaches to see the information on the physical fitness of the players, decrease the chances of them being injured, and improve their performance.
Many athletes use colored tape.
A lot of athletes, especially during the Olympics, wear bright tape on their bodies. This tape is used
in sports medicine. It’s attached to the muscle of the joint to decrease pain after an injury or prevent some dangerous moves.
Some athletes even believe that tape improves their performance, but research says this is not true.
The bright and perfect makeup of synchronized swimmers hides a secret.
Synchronized swimmers need to look visible for the judges and the viewers to be able to see their facial expressions. This is why they wear several layers of makeup and why they mix shades with Vaseline to prevent the makeup from washing off. There are some secrets to the way they do their hair too. They put gelatin on their hair and use a lot of bobby pins to help it keep its shape.
Professional cyclists pee during the race.
During the biggest of the bike races, the Tour de France, cyclists have to travel hundreds of kilometers for several days. They spend hours on their bikes and drink lots of water. In these circumstances, they wait until the race slows down, run to the side of the road, and pee.
But sometimes it’s impossible, so they have to pee on the go.
Gymnasts perform barefoot, and there’s a reason why.
You’ve probably noticed that some girls perform in special socks, and others don’t. It’s a personal preference or it’s determined by the program they are doing. For example, some dancing pieces are more comfortable to do in shoes in order to avoid pain.
But feet without socks or shoes on them provide more traction which helps them cling onto something with their toes if needed.
Swimmers wear 2 caps to improve their results.
In swimming, fractions of seconds really do matter, which is why athletes do everything to become even just a little bit faster. For example, they shave their entire bodies to decrease the water resistance and wear very light goggles. They also wear 2 caps.
Because the caps allow them to keep the goggles on better. First, they put on the first cap, then the goggles, and then the other cap.
Because it helps them to decrease the resistance. The first cap is made of latex which has wrinkles on it. On top of it, they wear a silicone cap which is not that comfortable but has fewer wrinkles on it.
There’s a reason why the basketball is this color.
In professional basketball, they always use orange balls with the same pattern on them. This is because it’s a bright color that players and viewers can easily spot. The first balls were made of natural skin that was brown and the color was made lighter so that it could be seen better.
The easily recognizable pattern of thin black lines appeared sometime later. It makes the ball more durable and keeps the round shape for a longer time. Besides, some experts say that the lines help the athletes control the ball much better.