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The Mid Western Regional Hospital, Doradoyle, Co. Limerick in Ireland carried out a study to see if hearing of rugby players was impaired due to wearing scrum caps or ear taping.

In order to avoid head injuries, many rugby players wear scrum caps during matches.  Taping around the ears with elastic adhesive bandage or electrical tape helps to avoid serious tears and injury.

There has been a hypothesis that this practice decreased the players’ ability to hear and therefore was detriment to his or her performance.

Audiometry tests were carried out on eight young men aged between 22 and 34.

None of the men demonstrated impairment of hearing whilst wearing a scrum cap or ear tape. Therefore the conclusion is that fears about these methods of head and ear protection affecting player ability are unfounded.

Read article abstract as featured in The British Journal of Sports Medicine