I vividly remember grim warnings from my high school graduation gym teachers, who lectured us on what exactly would happen whenever we didn’t put them on.
Best case scenario, we’d never be able to have children. We’d twist an unacceptable way, and that’s it, our reproductive organs can be mangled beyond repair.
And therefore was whenever we were lucky. Worse case, we’d suffer testicular trauma. There’d be ruptures, fractures, contusions, torsions; there is no end for the horrible things which could afflict our nuts in a friendly game of pickleball.
Related: The Higher Man Project, 2,476 tips to keep you happy and healthy for years
However I haven’t put on a jockstrap since sentences like “I’m worried about tomorrow’s algebra test” and “I sincerely think that dry-humping my girlfriend during a slow dance at prom sounds like a meaningful relationship milestone” were a few things i seriously considered regularly.
That is certainly, until a publicity rep for Diamond MMA compression jock and cup system-readily available for just $90-sent us a complimentary set a few weeks ago.
In case your first thought was, “Hey, isn’t the same cup Dairy Queen purposes of their Banana Splits?”, we are totally on the very same page.
At the beginning, I left it in my desk, like a kind of perverse tip jar. I even briefly tried it being a makeshift container for pens and Post-It notes.
I Then made a decision to strap it on to the Men’s Health Monday morning editorial meeting.
There’s something weirdly exhilarating about planning to work wearing the level of testicular protection usually reserved for MMA athletes.
Because as soon as your balls are that ensconced, you realize, without having a shadow of your doubt, how the day won’t end together with you being rushed on the e . r . with internal scrotal bleeding.
Obviously, you might claim that about most days-particularly when your job, like mine, involves long periods of typing with a computer, or having conversations with calm, entirely nonviolent individuals who are unlikely to judo chop you inside the nuts out of nowhere.
But there I was, all but daring my fellow editors-with merely a smug smile-to thrust their elbows into my gonads, or grind the organization end with their shoes into my giggleberries.
Unsurprisingly, there have been no takers.
Afterward, I purchased to talking with some my male coworkers about balls-hey, these topics just surface-and what, if something, we’re doing to shield them. I found that not a single one of those wears jockstraps anymore.
Not simply across the office. Even at the health club. Or wherever they figure out. They’re essentially free-balling it.
Jay Ferrari, a regular MH contributor that has 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.”
Why not? Why were jockstrap underwear necessary in your youth, but not so much in 2015?
When our high school graduation gym coaches warned us from the testicular Armageddon that can are caused by letting our boys dangle unprotected, were they loaded with shit?
“Probably,” says Brian Steixner, M.D., Director in 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 in terms of testicular trauma, no less than among non-pro athletes, he insists it rarely happens.
From the approximately 2,500 patients he treats each year, no more than 2 of those are suffering from scrotal injury.
How can it happen? “Maybe a horse kicked them within the balls,” he says. “Or there was an auto accident in which the steering wheel went within their nuts. Often it involves farm equipment or heavy machinery. Your career involves pulling a strap and something breaks and snaps.”
To put it differently, nothing that’s very likely to afflict you. (Aside from the vehicle accident. But even then, using a steering wheel rammed in your balls seems like an extensive shot.)
“Modern boxer briefs basically solves the situation,” he says. “You don’t must wear this weird contraption that has these straps that wrap around your butt. You can wear tight-fitting underwear, mainly because it does everything a jockstrap did, which happens to be keep things high and tight. That’s everything required.”
While underwear has evolved, not a whole lot has changed in jockstrap and cup technology, which first came into vogue during the late 1800s.
“A jockstrap is actually a jockstrap, today because it was in those days,” says Kevin Flaherty, whose great-great-great-grandfather founded the first jockstrap manufacturers in the nation, the J.B. Flaherty Company, Inc., in 1898.
Previously 100-plus years, the type of material have changed. Flaherty’s company-now Martin Inc., which produces Flarico, Bub, and Activeman products-has changed from knitted waistbands and straps into much more comfortable woven products.
The waistbands have a plush back, where there isn’t a 3-inch-wide component of rough elastic. But furthermore, and some fashion colors, there hasn’t been lots of dexjpky93 within the design.
Except, of course, for products like the Diamond MMA. Their compression-jock-and-cup product is made out of polycarbonate, a durable thermoplastic material that’s found in bulletproof glass.
That could be useful when your job requires people seeking to kill you, or at a minimum severely damage your yam bag. But also for us non-MMA athletes, should we actually need very much ball-protecting technology?
Sure, fluke accidents happen. But that doesn’t mean you must walk around wearing a helmet and elbow pads. That will be insane.
“The only other time I’ve seen serious scrotal injury was from a parent,” Dr. Steixner says.
“Excuse me?” I ask.
“Like a dad getting kicked hard within the nuts by one among his kids. That takes place on a regular basis.”
“It does?” I ask this though I absolutely know he’s right.
I’m a mother or father of a 4-year-old boy, and I’ve been on the receiving end of the barbarous foot or elbow. I’m knowledgeable of what it’s like to get a crushing ball blast coming 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, when I go back 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 whole body involved with it this period!”
“Everything regarding this makes me uncomfortable,” she announces, such as this proclamation will somehow make my son stop hurtling into my nutsack with extreme prejudice.
My son and i also just laugh, and that he consistently deliver blow after merciless blow onto what should be my soft extremities.
“It’s okay,” I attempt to convey to her, after pretending for your umpteenth time that my son had caused me irreparable scrotal damage. “This is what boys do.”
Then he tries on his cup-the Diamond MMA people were kind enough to send me two-and that i give his groin a pounding (although admittedly I pull my punches.)
My spouse eventually walks away. She can’t bring it anymore. But my son and I keep laughing, and keep punching one another within the nuts, surprised by the loud CLUNK our knuckles make when they connect with what needs to be testicles.
“This is the greatest night of my well being,” my son laughs, falling on the floor, clutching his ribs with laughter.
Testicular violence is nothing to laugh at. But testicular violence where nobody gets hurt because of modern technology designed particularly for professional athletes? Well, that’s simply a reminder that we’re surviving in a remarkable age, unlike anything our senior high school gym teachers could possibly have imagined.