Is Thiam’s haircut extra weight?

One of the eye-catchers at the World Athletics Championships in London is Nafi Thiam. Not only the athlete herself is drawing the attention, but also her haircut: long dreadlocks painted in grey, and with a small golden ring.

Olympic Champion Nafi Thiam (23) impressed this spring with a star performance in the heptathlon in Götzis, where she became only the fourth athlete in history to break the magical 7,000 point mark collecting 7,013 points. Last year in August, she was crowned Olympic Champion in Rio.

Her past feats make her one of the international eye-catchers, together with Usain Bolt, and her new coiffure will only add to this.

Speaking to the VRT, hair stylist Jochen Vanhoudt said he is impressed by the long dreadlocks. “It must have taken at least 6 hours, when done by African specialists. If they would do in my studio, my team would need 10 hours.”

Vanhoudt is almost sure Thiam used extensions. “This can’t be natural.” Others openly ask whether the hair will not hamper the athlete in any way in her quest for the Gold. “I don’t see any problems there. Mind you, I think it means an extra weight of 200 to 300 grams. She can always make it a long ponytail and then it’s out of her way.”

Well, as it turned out, Nafi Thiam’s hair didn’t hamper her performance as she added the world crown to her accolades with victory in the heptathlon in London; the first Belgian world champion in athletics ever. The 21-year-old Belgian amassed a winning total of 6,784 points, with overnight leader Carolin Schafer of Germany taking silver with 6,696. Dutchwoman Anouk Vetter claimed bronze (6,636). – vrt/tab