Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Great Hair Battle!

Crazy face, yes.  Great hair, also yes. 
Sometimes, I wish I was a dude.  Not very fact, it lasts for approximately two seconds while I glance at my husbands shaved head and his effortless boxing, then turn my attention back to the hair in my face and the pads in front of me.  As a fighter, I am always dealing with a mass of hair and trying to figure out the best way to keep it out of my eyes.  It is enough to make me want to shave my head...again, as a fighter. 
Any girl who has trained BJJ for even a short span of time has found herself lusting over a shaved head.  And not just the hot shaved-head boys at the gym, but for the ability to jump into a training session without the long battle with hair. 

As a woman, and a particularly vain woman, I delight in my very thick and very long hair, which I use to seduce Mike and make other women jealous. 

Seriously...look at that hair.  You guys keep reading, I am going to stay right here and admire myself. 

Below I've provided some examples and commentary on methods for dealing with long hair while training and competing.  I will apologize in advance to all the short-hair gals because I've always had pretty long hair.  However, I would love to hear what different girls (and guys without short hair) do for training.

Standard pony-tail for my first fight.  I had to do a super high one because my bangs were still growing out.  It actually stayed up for the entire thing and I could see; an obvious necessity but one I often overlook while training.

I loved my bangs but mother of pearl, they are a pain in the ass when you are rolling or sparring.  I've found that braided pig-tails work very well when grappling because your head is often grinding, to a certain extent, again the mat.  When I wore my hair in a pony-tail or bun, the underneath part that made contact with the mat would turn into an enormous rats-nest (pretty) and it would take a half an hour and 10 ounces of conditioning to work it out.  

This is what I call 'the crazy bun.'  This unfortunate styling occurs when your hair is too damn thick to be put in a bun. I think a bun is a really great way to do your hair when practicing stand-up, but as soon as you go to the ground, it is going to be a mess.  I've seen several girls do a super high Samurai bun with a headband and it looks incredibly fierce.

Ultimate fail.  My cute french-braid pigtails turned into this monstrosity after three rounds.  I had just placed in my first NAGA grappling tournament and no one, not even my usually perceptive husband, told me that I looked like a squirrel had routed around on top of my head.  Typically I think french-braids, especially in pigtail format, work incredibly well for fighters.  However, this particular photo will haunt me forever.  

I brought back the braided pigtails (regular, not french) at my most recent competition and found them to be a success.  I first part my pair, then secure each ponytail under my ear with a hair band.  I braid the rest of the hair until it hits the first layer, then secure with another ponytail holder.  It is pretty easy and after each match, I can redo the braids within a minute or so. 


What is the best way to deal with long hair when fighting?  I think it depends on what exactly you are doing as well as what works best with your hair type.  I cannot do headbands because my hair is rather slick, but several of the girls I train rock the shit out of them and look seriously cute.  I tend to keep my hair up in a pony-tail, then pull back my bangs with about 100 bobby-pins.  These pop out of my hair throughout the training session and end up being picked up by the gym cleaner at the end of each week and returned to me for future wear.

Alright ladies...what do you do with your luscious hair when you are training and/or competing?  Any suggestions for the other ladies out there who do not want to end up with a celebratory photo of you with your metal (or sword) and tragic hair?

1 comment:

slideyfoot said...

If you're looking for jiu jitsu hair, then Meg has everything you need. :)