Why do Basketball Players Wear Masks? [Reasons & Benefits!]


Why Do Basketball Players Wear Mask

Playing basketball is very exciting though it is a very aggressive game. Professional players work very hard to play. You may have noticed that some basketball players wear masks. Some look so weird, right? Did you ever get confused about this! Why do basketball players wear masks? 

Today I’m going to tell you about how and why they started wearing masks. In summary, if I say then it is for protecting himself from a previous injury and future upcoming face injuries. 

Here, let’s learn about it broadly!

Read also: What To Wear When Playing Basketball [In-Depth Guide with FAQs]

History Behind Basketball Players Wearing the Mask

when basketball mask introduced

Basketball is known as a very competitive game where a player has to take some physical risk. As you know, the court or playground for basketball is not that big, and in this small field, accidents can happen. All the basketball players know how they face accidents like being bitten by opponents. 

Most of the time, they get hurt in the face. You can think this is the main reason basketball players come up with masks. 

It says, in the time of 80s, a lot of basketball players got many facial injuries. And at that time it was unique to discover a mask. 

In 1990, a basketball player named Bill Laimbeer was badly injured by his rival player and got hospitalised for a few months. It was very disappointing for his team to play without him because he was a good player in the team. And that time there was no other player who could take his position in the team. 

For this, a doctor came up with a solution and that was wearing a mask that can protect a player’s face from recovering old injuries or future injuries. Then Bill Laimbeer got permission to play again with masks and from then all basketball players know about it and some of them use it for protection.

Benefits of Wearing Masks

You can get a lot of health and other benefits of wearing a mask. A few of them are below:

  • Getting permission to play with face injuries

In this game, it’s easy to get elbow attacks and from this, a player gets hurt like in the nose or cheekbone. That’s why if a player wears a mask then that will help him prevent another injury. And it will increase the healing process.

  • For Protecting face

What we find most of the reasons are protecting a player from getting further injuries.

  • A batch of honour

Sometimes it is natural that a professional basketball player gets injured and for this, he can wear a mask. Also, it’s a kind of honour that shows a player is Pro in this field.

  • Making a statement on the basketball court

For a player who wears a mask, it’s important for his opponent team and fans on the court. For the opponent, it’s kind of intimidating. 

Do All NBA Players Wear Masks?

  • No, All players don’t wear masks because some don’t think of the need for a mask. 
  • Because it’s quite difficult to play wearing masks and it’s very uncomfortable also.
  • The mask is very hard plastic which makes a player feel very uncomfortable. But for protection they wear it. Though they do not feel good, some do a really good performance in the game.

Types of Masks for Basketball Players

If you see some players wearing masks then you will find that not everyone’s mask is not the same. There are very different kinds of masks and these depend on the council and the person who plays. Also, it depends on the types of injury for a special player. They create masks according to the needs of each player.

The main two types of masks for basketball players are-

  1. Generic Masks

These genetic masks can be used for all players but it is not perfect for all like it doesn’t fit well at face. It is just a ready-made mask. If a player has small injuries and he wants to wear a mask just for a few days then he can use it but it will not give him full comfort.

  1. Custom-fit

If you want a mask that is fully fitted with your face and a more comfortable one and wants to use it for a long time then you just take the custom fit mask. One drawback is that it is quite expensive but it will ensure all comfort or satisfy you. This mask will be made from the mould of your face. So it will be perfectly fine with your face.

Famous Basketball Players Wear Masks

As you know there are lots of famous players who wear masks. Let’s see some of them,

Richard Hamilton

Richard Hamilton played 14 seasons in the National Basketball Association who is a professional basketball player. He hurt his nose many times between 2003 to 2004 and then he had started to wear a mask.

John Starks

John got hurt by his opponent in 1993 and from then he had started to wear a mask.

Kobe Bryant

In 2012, while playing in the NBA, Kobe was hurt in the nose by his opponent. And this time Kobe started to wear a mask.

Tracy McGrady

Tracy got elbowed in the face in 2006 and he had no other choice but to choose a mask to heal his injury soon.

Injuries Related to Basketball

While playing basketball, players can get many types of injuries. Because playing in a small court makes players interact with each other. Here are some common injuries-

  • Ankle spraining 

A survey in 2014 for NBA players got a result that almost 19.5% of the basketball players do suffer this problem.

  • Knee injury

When a player loses his balance then this problem occurs and the survey said about 13.9% of players were suffering from knee problems.

  • Thigh injury

One of the painful injuries is this and when a player loses balance while vertical jumping. And about 9.7% of players were suffering from thigh injuries.

  • Back or Neck injury

This is a very common injury for the beginner player and around 9.3% of players face back or Neck injury.

  • Face injury

Nose, eyes or cheek injury is very serious for basketball players. And for this, the mask creation occurred. These injuries can be removed from previous awareness and for that, a basketball player can use a mask or other protecting toots. 

Ending Words-Wear Masks!

So, here you may have got the answer to the story behind the masks. I suggest if you are a professional basketball player then you should wear a mask early because it’s very common to get hurt in the face. 

You need to find a way to protect yourself from getting injured. So, don’t be reckless while playing professionally and get protection.

Read also: A Mystery Guide- What To Wear Under a Basketball Jersey?

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