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Soccer Rules Changes 1580-2000

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Question Number: 33686

Law 4 - The Players Equipment 10/2/2019

RE: Competive Under 16

Doug Crawford of Moraga, CA US asks...

This question is a follow up to question 33676

Is Beaded Hair not allowed in youth soccer? I can see why as when players turn their head suddenly, or jump, the hair bead would move at a faster pace and could easily injury someone's eyes or other facial area.
I had never heard this so wanted to confirm.
- a very popular item in my area that I have actually not seen on the soccer field
Thanks as always /Doug

Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Doug,
The Laws of the Game say that:

''A player must not use equipment or wear anything that is dangerous.''

Since as you say and as my colleagues have also mentioned, beads in a player's hair would almost certainly present a safety hazard, I agree that they should not be allowed.

On the question of them also being classified as jewellery, I am not so sure. The LotG do not provide a definition of what is and is not considered jewellery but the Oxford English Dictionary gives the following:

''personal ornaments, such as necklaces, rings, or bracelets, that are typically made from or contain jewels and precious metal''

Based on that definition and my own understanding of what jewellery is, I'm not convinced that I personally would consider beads in the hair as jewellery - but they are potentially dangerous, which is why I feel they should not be allowed.

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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Doug,
That's correct - beaded hair is not allowed.
It would be considered jewellery, given the beads are decorative and not necessary.
Even if somebody wanted to dispute that point - they do pose a hazard to other players, so the fact that dangerous items are not allowed also covers them.

They're also a hazard to the player wearing them - it could get nasty if there's a head clash with some beads caught between.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Doug
Beads are considered jewellery so they are not allowed.
As you say the beads can make contact with an opponent and if the player while heading the ball they can get caught between the head and the ball or an opponent.

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