Do you need Taekwondo headgear for Taekwondo sparring? Or can you substitute protective gear designed for another martial art, like MMA headgear? If you’re serious about your Taekwondo training and sparring, this is something you should discuss with your instructor or coach. But here’s a general overview on Taekwondo headgear and MMA headgear to help inform your decision.
Taekwondo headgear protects against cuts, scrapes, and swelling during training or sparring. (While it can cushion some of the blow from any strikes you receive to the head, it is important to note that no headgear can guarantee protection against concussions and other head trauma.) Taekwondo headgear is typically made from vinyl or dipped foam and is fastened by a chin strap. It may contain vents designed for better ventilation and hearing. Face cages may also be attached to Taekwondo headgear to offer additional protection to the face.
Like Taekwondo headgear, MMA headgear is designed to protect your head. (Although its padding does cushion your head from punches and kicks, the same caution about concussions and head trauma apply.) MMA head guards are usually made from vinyl or leather, with padding made from foam or gel.
Using MMA Headgear in Taekwondo
As long as your instructor approves, you will probably be fine using MMA headgear. If you’re serious about your training, though, you will feel and perform much better in Taekwondo headgear that has been specifically designed to meet the needs and demands of Taekwondo.