The Ireland women’s team will wear navy shorts in this year’s Six Nations, becoming the first home nations team to announce a change from their traditional white shorts over period concerns.
Ireland, who begin their Six Nations campaign with a visit to Wales on 25 March, have made the move in response to player feedback. “The top way to ensure we perform to our best on the field is by removing any unnecessary distractions,” said the Ireland centre Enya Breen. “Wearing navy shorts instead of white is such a small thing, but for us it’s a big step from Canterbury and the IRFU.
“This will remove the stress of worrying about being on your period while you’re playing in a match. Our hope is that it will help women at all levels of rugby feel more comfortable on the field so they can get on with performing at their best in the game that they love.”
The switch is part of a growing movement away from white shorts in women’s sport. In September, the West Brom football team moved to navy shorts and the issue was raised by the England team during the European Championships last summer. In November, Wimbledon announced it was to drop the tournament’s strict all-white dress code and allow female players to wear dark undershorts.