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How Being Bald Helps You Wrestle: Unlocking the Reason Why All the Wrestling Coaches Are Bald

Dashiel Gabryszewski, Junior Writer

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This new fashion craze is sweeping through the wrestling world: being bald. Everyone always makes fun of these two subjects. Sure, real wrestling means dressing in a fancy leotard. Yes, being bald means you are different from other people, and everyone finds that hilarious. Specifically at DePaul College Prep, inevitably these subjects intersect, mostly due to the lack of hair on the wrestling coaches’ heads.

This all raises the question; why are all the wrestling coaches bald? Does it have something to do with them being wrestling coaches? In a word, yes. Mr. Rabideau, Mr. Heffernan, and Mr. Zimmer all wrestled in high school, have good wrestling careers, and now are all bald. This is not a coincidence. One could clearly deduce that their lack of hair has been the next step in their wrestling adventure, they have clearly “upped the ante.”

Apparently, being bald actually makes you better at wrestling. It is clear that the DePaul Prep wrestling coaches are extremely skilled, but few know that it is because of their shaved heads. There are several schools of thought to just how being bald improves your wrestling skill. First of all, there is the idea that shaving your head and keeping the stubble that develops is the best way. Apparently, according to Mr. Zimmer at least, “if I can make my opponent uncomfortable due to my spiky, thinning hair, so be it.” Being bald, or at least having shaved hair stubble on your head, is intimidating. There is also the idea that being bald improves your speed. Ramiro Maldonado, a long time part of the DePaul Prep wrestling team, summed up the benefits of a bald head with one word: “aerodynamics.” According to Ramiro, “The smoother their head is, the faster they can move through the air.”

Their being bald also has a lot to do with genetics. Many men suffer from a genetic trait called “male pattern baldness.” According to MedlinePlus.gov, “It usually follows a pattern of receding hairline and hair thinning on the crown… it may affect self-esteem or cause anxiety. The hair loss is usually permanent.” This results in a fully bald head within a few years, or patches of thin hair on the scalp. Either way, the usual next step is to fully shave the head, either because of the inevitability of the hair loss or how ugly patchy hair looks. It only occurs in men because it is a recessive gene on the X chromosome. It seems that at least some of the wrestling coaches are affected. According to Mr. Zimmer, he is bald because of, “my grandfather on my mother’s side… he had a really bad hairline as well.” Mr. Rabideau also seems to be affected by male pattern baldness, when asked about his head he said, “it’s not bald, shaved.” This insistence that his head is shaved and the appearance of his five o’clock head shadow seem to corroborate this fact. Unfortunately, Mr. Heffernan was not available for comment.

Other theories for their common baldness have also been proposed by some of their protégés, such as an allergic reaction to old cheese. It is clear that most of these ideas are simply bunk, although hilarious to entertain.  An allergic reaction to old cheese is also extremely unlikely. According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, “Milk allergy symptoms include hives, stomach upset, vomiting, bloody stools, especially in infants, and Anaphylaxis, a rare, potentially life-threatening reaction that impairs breathing and can send the body into shock.” None of these have anything to hair loss in men. Besides, 95% of hair loss cases in men are caused by the aforementioned male pattern baldness, making it extremely unlikely for all three wrestling couches to be spurred to shave their heads for any of these reasons.

However, there is one additional explanation as to why all the wrestling coaches have bald heads: stress. According to WebMD, a major cause of hair loss other than male pattern baldness is, “Mental stress or physical stress.” Wrestling is “a tough and demanding sport”, and according to Art Jones, two-time OVAC (Ohio Valley Athletic Conference) Champion, “stress affects wrestlers in different ways.” It is very possible that the many years of experience in wrestling has taken a toll on their bodies, and more specifically, their scalps. Combine that with a genetic predisposition toward a receding hairline, and you have the recipe for significant hair loss. One consequence of their determination may have been the loss of their head carpet.

That is not to say that the wrestling coaches do not enjoy being bald. There are many benefits besides the aforementioned improved wrestling abilities. As many women can attest, all that hair is just a hassle. Not having hair is often a choice. Contrary to popular belief, a completely shaven head must be maintained. Mr. Zimmer has to be very careful with his own head, one time he “missed a spot that looked like South America.” One must be very diligent to avoid such distasteful blotches. Even with similar trials, it is still worth it in the end. As Mr. Rabideau said, “it [being bald] just streamlines things, mentally and physically. It’s just really comfortable.” He reportedly saves an incredible amount of money in shampoo, “Too much to count.” Having a shaved head also helps you throughout your life, according to the BBC, “Bald men are seen as more intelligent, dominant and high status; their shiny scalps may help them to seduce women or even save lives.” It is a wonder that more people do not shave their heads and go bald.

All in all, there are so many reasons why being bald helps you, not only in wrestling, but in life. All these reasons contribute to why all the wrestling coaches are bald. It is the grandiose combination of fortuitous genetics, intense physical and mental stress, aerodynamics, and a preference for a lack of hair. What being bald really shows about the DePaul Prep wrestling coaches is not that something is afoul with their follicles, but that they are truly dedicated to their sport, their art, and to their teaching. Their “sacrifice” has produced a new generation of wrestlers. Sometimes, winning the wrestling match means losing the fight against male-pattern baldness.

1 Comment

One Response to “How Being Bald Helps You Wrestle: Unlocking the Reason Why All the Wrestling Coaches Are Bald”

  1. Rabideau on March 22nd, 2018 8:34 am

    I see this article starting a shaved head revolution.

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




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How Being Bald Helps You Wrestle: Unlocking the Reason Why All the Wrestling Coaches Are Bald