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Why do Wimbledon players wear white outfit?

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Serena Williams Wimbledon white attire

 

If you watch Wimbledon, you’ll know that all tennis players on The Championship courts wear white. Why is Wimbledon Championships strict about wearing whites only?  Roger Federer, Serena Williams, Andy Murray, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and others challenging Wimbledon dress code.

 

 

This is because the tournament has a strict dress code, which states ‘Competitors must be dressed in suitable tennis attire that is almost entirely white and this applies from the point at which the player enters the court surround. White does not include off white or cream.’

 

 

Serena Williams Wimbledon attire

The rules get even more specific from there. Shoes, soles and laces must all be white, as must the backs of shirts and undergarments. Only a thin, single strip of colour is allowed on necklines, sleeves, trousers and skirts, wristbands and headwear, no bigger than 10mm.

 

 

Serena Williams Wimbledon

 

 

So, why are the rules so stringent? Why do Wimbledon players wear white outfits?

‘Tennis whites’ at Wimbledon reportedly date back to the 1800s. The tournament launched in 1877, and in this Victorian era, it was believed white would be the ideal colour for players to wear. White clothing would prevent or minimise sweat stains visible on the players clothes, and be ‘cooling’, it was thought.

 

 

The rules on what constituted an appropriately-white outfit weren’t always as strict, though. Clothing guidelines were updated in 1963, and again in 1995, before the 10-part clothing and equipment decree was issued in 2014.

Serena Williams and Venus white on court

 

 

The rules on what constituted an appropriately-white outfit weren’t always as strict, though. Clothing guidelines were updated in 1963, and again in 1995, before the 10-part clothing and equipment decree was issued in 2014.

Of course, Wimbledon watchers do not have to wear white. It’s just a rule for players on the court.