They look sexy, and they’re super comfortable, but what are they *actually* for?
To find out more, we have to go all the way back to the 1870s, and a Mr. Bennett of Chicago, who was clearly *very* concerned about the damage that cobbled streets were doing to bicycle courier’s nuts.
All that uncontrolled bouncing about kept him up at night. Poor Mr. Bennett. But luckily for the bicycle messengers (or ‘jockeys’), Mr. Bennett had an idea, and he named it after them. The ‘jock strap’ was born.
Fast-forward 50 years to the 1920s, and a young Canadian named Jack Cartlege. Jack loved his hockey *almost* as much as he loved slipping on his favourite jock strap, but it wasn’t until one fateful day in 1927 that Jack realized (the hard way!) that his jock strap was no competition for a hockey puck in the groin.
Jack wasn’t massively keen on repeating the experience, and who blames him, so he came up with the ingenious idea of slipping a hard cup down the front of his jock strap. The design was quickly patented and production began. Men no longer had to live in fear of a stray puck, ball or studded boot.
Jack’s combo of jock strap and protective cup became the mainstay of boys’ high school sports kit the world over for the remainder of the 20th century, until underwear brands like Andrew Christian, C-in2 and Addicted started reinventing the classic design. Out went the ugly shade of off-white and the unflattering waistbands, and in came a new range of innovative cuts and shapes, and fun colors. These modern jock straps are the perfect balance between fashion and function – as great around the track or in the gym as they are under a pair of jeans, or suit trousers if you’re game for it. Business in the front, party in the back!