I vividly remember grim warnings from my high school graduation gym teachers, who lectured us on exactly what would happen once we didn’t put them on.
Best case scenario, we’d never have the capacity to have children. We’d twist the incorrect way, and that’s it, our reproductive organs can be mangled beyond repair.
And that was whenever we were lucky. Worse case, we’d suffer testicular trauma. There’d be ruptures, fractures, contusions, torsions; there was no end towards the horrible things that could occur to our nuts during a friendly bet on pickleball.
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But I haven’t wear a jockstrap since sentences like “I’m worried about tomorrow’s algebra test” and “I sincerely believe that dry-humping my girlfriend throughout a slow dance at prom sounds like a meaningful relationship milestone” were a few things i thought about regularly.
That is, until a public relations rep for Diamond MMA compression jock and cup system-accessible for just $90-sent us a complimentary set several weeks ago.
When your first thought was, “Hey, isn’t that this same cup Dairy Queen ways to use their Banana Splits?”, we are totally about the same page.
Initially, I left it in my desk, like a kind of perverse tip jar. I even briefly tried it as a makeshift container for pens and Post-It notes.
I Then decided to strap it on for your Men’s Health Monday morning editorial meeting.
There’s something weirdly exhilarating about likely to work wearing the kind of testicular protection usually reserved for MMA athletes.
Because when your balls are that ensconced, you realize, without having a shadow of any doubt, how the day won’t end together with you being rushed on the emergency room with internal scrotal bleeding.
Obviously, you could say that about most days-particularly when your career, like mine, involves long periods of typing over a computer, or having conversations with calm, entirely nonviolent those people who are unlikely to judo chop you inside the nuts without warning.
But there I had been, all but daring my fellow editors-with nothing but a smug smile-to thrust their elbows into my gonads, or grind the organization end of their shoes into my giggleberries.
Not surprisingly, there have been no takers.
Afterward, I got to talking to some my male coworkers about balls-hey, these topics just show up-and what, if something, we’re doing to protect them. I found out that not much of a single one of these wears jockstraps anymore.
Not only around the office. Even in the club. Or wherever they work out. They’re essentially free-balling it.
Jay Ferrari, a consistent MH contributor having a black belt in Brazilian jiu jitsu, says the final time he wore a jockstrap “was for pee wee football. But a jockstrap during college football or jiu jitsu? Never.”
So why not? Why were mens jockstraps necessary in your youth, although not a lot in 2015?
When our high school graduation gym coaches warned us in the testicular Armageddon that may originate from letting our boys dangle unprotected, were they filled with shit?
“Probably,” says Brian Steixner, M.D., Director from the Institute of Men’s Health at Jersey Urology Group in Atlantic City.
Dr. Steixner has treated some truly horrifying, gory male organ injuries. But when it comes to testicular trauma, no less than among non-pro athletes, he insists it rarely happens.
Of the approximately 2,500 patients he treats each year, approximately 2 of those are susceptible to scrotal injury.
So how exactly does it happen? “Maybe a horse kicked them in the balls,” he says. “Or there was a vehicle accident where steering wheel went inside their nuts. Often it has to do with farm equipment or heavy machinery. Your career involves pulling a strap and something breaks and snaps.”
To put it differently, nothing that’s prone to eventually you. (Except for the automobile accident. But even then, developing a steering wheel rammed into the balls seems like a lengthy shot.)
“Modern boxer briefs pretty much solves the situation,” he says. “You don’t have to wear this weird contraption containing these straps that wrap around your butt. You can use tight-fitting underwear, as it does everything a jockstrap did, which happens to be keep things high and tight. That’s all you need.”
While underwear has evolved, very little has evolved in jockstrap and cup technology, which first came into vogue through the late 1800s.
“A jockstrap is a jockstrap, today as it was in those days,” says Kevin Flaherty, whose great-great-great-grandfather founded the first jockstrap manufacturers in america, the J.B. Flaherty Company, Inc., in 1898.
In past times 100-plus years, materials have changed. Flaherty’s company-now Martin Inc., which produces Flarico, Bub, and Activeman products-has evolved from knitted waistbands and straps into more at ease woven products.
The waistbands have a plush back, and then there isn’t a 3-inch-wide component of rough elastic. But furthermore, and a few fashion colors, there hasn’t been a lot of dexjpky93 from the design.
Except, naturally, for items like the Diamond MMA. Their compression-jock-and-cup system is manufactured from polycarbonate, a durable thermoplastic material that’s employed in bulletproof glass.
That may be useful if your job requires people seeking to kill you, or otherwise severely damage your yam bag. However for us non-MMA athletes, do we really need very much ball-protecting technology?
Sure, fluke accidents happen. But that doesn’t mean you ought to walk around wearing a helmet and elbow pads. That would be insane.
“The only other time I’ve seen serious scrotal injury was from your parent,” Dr. Steixner says.
“Excuse me?” I ask.
“Like a dad getting kicked hard in the nuts by one of his kids. You do at all times.”
“It does?” I ask this though I absolutely know he’s right.
I’m a parent or gaurdian of any 4-year-old boy, and I’ve been on the receiving end of any barbarous foot or elbow. I’m knowledgeable of what it’s love to obtain a crushing ball blast from a kid not old enough yet to comprehend that scrotums have similar general potential to deal with blunt force trauma as hard-boiled eggs.
Later that night, after i return home, I’m still wearing my Diamond MMA compression jock and cup. But unlike the professional interactions with my co-workers, I don’t discourage a violent reciprocity with my testicles.
“C’mon!” I shout at my son, who can’t believe what his daddy is asking him. “Hit me again! Really throw your entire body with it this time around!”
“Everything concerning this makes me uncomfortable,” she announces, similar to this proclamation will somehow make my son stop hurtling into my nutsack with extreme prejudice.
My son and so i just laugh, and that he is constantly deliver blow after merciless blow onto what needs to be my soft extremities.
“It’s okay,” I try and explain to her, after pretending for your umpteenth time that my son had caused me irreparable scrotal damage. “This is just what boys do.”
Then he tries on their own cup-the Diamond MMA everyone was kind enough to send me two-and i also give his groin a pounding (although admittedly I pull my punches.)
My partner eventually walks away. She can’t take it anymore. But my son and I keep laughing, and keep punching each other inside the nuts, impressed by the loud CLUNK our knuckles make every time they interact with what ought to be testicles.
“This is the best evening of my well being,” my son laughs, falling on the floor, clutching his ribs with laughter.
Testicular violence is certainly not to laugh at. But testicular violence in which nobody gets hurt as a result of modern technology designed especially for professional athletes? Well, that’s merely a reminder that we’re living in a remarkable age, unlike anything our high school gym teachers might have imagined.