Polo is a team sport often involving physical contact between horseback riders as they tackle for the ball. Needless to say, this makes the necessary Polo equipment very significant both for playing the game effectively and avoiding injuries.
Playing Polo Safely
Firstly, it’s imperative the riders wear protective Polo helmets as chances of falling from their horses and severe injuries are quite high. Knee pads and wristbands are two other protective types of equipment worn by the players, while some also frequently put on a face mask.
Each team wears differently colored helmets so the spectators can easily differentiate between them.
The importance of Sturdy Mallets
Coming to the Polo playing equipment itself, the mallet is constructed of bamboo, with a rubber grip for holding it. The head used for hitting the ball depends on the player’s preference as lighter heads make swinging the mallet easier. However, the heavier it is, the better as it gives superior results, with all the top players choosing heavier heads over lighter ones.
The white ball used is ideally made of plastic and travels at great speed. This can lead to severe injuries if a person gets in the way of a speeding ball.
Polo players often also have a particular saddle enabling them a better posture for playing the game.
No Horsing around with the Horse!
Choosing the right horse, or rather a pony, for playing Polo is every bit as important. They are made to wear protective bandages on their legs to avoid injuries from accidental mallet hits and collisions.
Ponies get their tails often braided so as to avoid it getting caught in mallet swings. This can be painful for the animal besides being dangerous for the players too.
Players can often get very particular about which pony they pick for playing the game as man-animal coordination is one of the most important elements of this game. Ponies have to be very well trained before they can be used to play the sport. This can take up to several years before the ponies are ready for the game.
The amount of money required for arranging all the Polo gear is one reason which makes this sport so costly. However, one must never shy away from ensuring he is buying the best set of helmet, mallet, knee pads and other equipment so as to avoid the chances of serious injuries. Though used Polo equipment for sale is also available if you’re a beginner.