Wrestling singlets have come a long way since the early days of its inception in 1970. Three things are very important when it comes to making an ideal singlet: functionality, appearance and comfort.

The singlet uniform is considered one and the same with the sport of wrestling, but it seems to be falling out of favor on the college level. In the face of its moderately undersized shelf-life, the singlet will always be linked with the sport.

Brief History

Before the 1970s, wrestlers often wore no shirt top, depending on the style preferred by the home team. If a school chose not to wear shirts, the visiting team was notified 10 days before the match to conform with that style. But in 1966, the NCAA made mandatory a three-piece uniform of shirt, trunks and tights. That three-piece ensemble became the forerunner of the singlet.

Starting Point of Singlets

During the early 1970s, the singlet started to become prevalent in the wrestling world. The NCAA had banned uniforms that were one-piece in 1963, but after they were used in an Olympic competition in Rome in 1960, the singlet began to be popular in the U.S. and became the standard uniform at both the high school and collegiate level.

Evolution of the Singlet

In 2005, the NCAA endorsed an alternate two-piece version created after the uniforms were worn by world-class cyclists, with short sleeves instead of the singlet’s traditional shoulder straps. Although the new uniform was adopted at the college level, the singlet remains the uniform of choice at the high school level.