Wimbledon relaxes white-wear rules for players | Popgen Tech
Wimbledon organizers announced on Thursday that the white dress code will be relaxed to allow female players to wear dark underpants if they choose.
The decision came after the tournament, which saw its organizers face mounting pressure to ease concerns about whether blood was visible on the white clothing of menstruating players.
“We are committed to supporting players and listening to their feedback on how they can perform at their best,” said Sally Bolton, chief executive of the All England Club.
“I am pleased to confirm that following consultation with the players and representatives of several stakeholder groups, the Management Committee has decided to update the white dress code at Wimbledon.
“This means that from next year women and girls competing in the championships will be able to wear colored underpants if they choose.
“We hope this rule adjustment will help players focus solely on their performance, eliminating a potential source of anxiety.”
Prior to Thursday’s announcement, Wimbledon still had a strict all-white dress code that was first introduced to mask sweat stains.
Tournament organizers have been under pressure to relax the strict dress code, and at this year’s tournament, campaigners gathered at SW19 with signs reading “About bloody time” and “Please note the dress code”.
Several women, including former Olympic champion Monica Puig and Australian tennis player Daria Saville, spoke of the “mental stress” caused by the all-white dress code and “skipping periods” as a result.
And in a recent interview with CNN’s Amanda Davis, tennis great Billie Jean King explained that the dress code caused anxiety among her and her competitors.
“My generation was always worried because we wore all white all the time,” King told CNN’s Amanda Davis.
“And what you wear underneath is important for your period.
Billie Jean King reveals ‘pet peeve’ is ‘terrible’ Wimbledon white uniform policy
– Source: CNN
“And we always check to see if we show. You stress about it because we’re artists first and foremost, and you want everything you put on to look flawless, to look great,” she said.
King also noted that the all-white dress code makes it difficult for fans to try to distinguish players on the court.
“There is nothing worse in sports than when you turn on the TV and two players are wearing the same uniform or the same clothing. It’s terrible. Nobody knows who is who.
“It’s one of my pet peeves, I’ve been screaming for years. Have you ever seen a sport where people wear the same clothes on each side?’ she added.
Wimbledon will be held from July 3 to 16, 2023.