I vividly remember grim warnings from my high school graduation gym teachers, who lectured us on exactly what would happen whenever we didn’t use them.
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 that was when we were lucky. Worse case, we’d suffer testicular trauma. There’d be ruptures, fractures, contusions, torsions; there was clearly no end on the horrible things which could afflict our nuts during a friendly game of pickleball.
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But I haven’t put on a jockstrap since sentences like “I’m concerned with tomorrow’s algebra test” and “I sincerely assume that dry-humping my girlfriend during the slow dance at prom seems like a meaningful relationship milestone” were 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 me a complimentary set a few weeks ago.
If your first thought was, “Hey, isn’t that the same cup Dairy Queen purposes of their Banana Splits?”, then we are totally about the same page.
Initially, I left it on my own desk, like a sort of perverse tip jar. I even briefly tried it being a makeshift container for pens and Post-It notes.
I chose to strap it on for your Men’s Health Monday morning editorial meeting.
There’s something weirdly exhilarating about going to work wearing the level of testicular protection usually reserved for MMA athletes.
Because when your balls are that ensconced, you understand, without a shadow of the doubt, how the day won’t end along being rushed towards the emergency room with internal scrotal bleeding.
Of course, you can state that about most days-particularly if your work, like mine, involves long stretches of typing over a computer, or having conversations with calm, entirely nonviolent individuals who are unlikely to judo chop you in the nuts without warning.
But there I used to be, all but daring my fellow editors-with merely a smug smile-to thrust their elbows into my gonads, or grind this business end in their shoes into my giggleberries.
Not surprisingly, there are no takers.
Afterward, I got to chatting with some my male coworkers about balls-hey, these topics just appear-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 merely throughout the office. Even in the club. Or wherever they workout. They’re essentially free-balling it.
Jay Ferrari, a consistent MH contributor who has a black belt in Brazilian jiu jitsu, says the last 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 buy jockstrap necessary inside our youth, although not a lot in 2015?
When our high school graduation gym coaches warned us in the testicular Armageddon that could are caused by letting our boys dangle unprotected, were they packed 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, a minimum of among non-pro athletes, he insists it rarely happens.
From the approximately 2,500 patients he treats every year, no more than a couple of those are suffering from scrotal injury.
So how exactly does it happen? “Maybe a horse kicked them from the balls,” he says. “Or there seemed to be an auto accident where controls went into their nuts. It sometimes concerns farm equipment or heavy machinery. Your career involves pulling a strap and something breaks and snaps.”
Put simply, nothing that’s more likely to eventually you. (With the exception of the vehicle accident. But even then, having a steering wheel rammed to your balls appears like an extensive shot.)
“Modern boxer briefs pretty much solves the situation,” he says. “You don’t should wear this weird contraption which includes these straps that wrap around your butt. Try on some tight-fitting underwear, mainly because it does everything a jockstrap did, that is keep things high and tight. That’s all you need.”
While underwear has evolved, not much has changed in jockstrap and cup technology, which first came into vogue during the late 1800s.
“A jockstrap can be a jockstrap, today mainly because it was in the past,” says Kevin Flaherty, whose great-great-great-grandfather founded the first jockstrap manufacturers in the nation, the J.B. Flaherty Company, Inc., in 1898.
Before 100-plus years, materials have changed. Flaherty’s company-now Martin Inc., which produces Flarico, Bub, and Activeman products-has changed from knitted waistbands and straps into more comfortable woven products.
The waistbands will have a plush back, and then there isn’t a 3-inch-wide piece of rough elastic. But adding to that, and some fashion colors, there hasn’t been plenty of dexjpky93 within the design.
Except, obviously, for items like the Diamond MMA. Their compression-jock-and-cup product is made out of polycarbonate, a durable thermoplastic material that’s utilized in bulletproof glass.
Which may be useful when your job requires people attempting to kill you, or otherwise severely damage your yam bag. But for us non-MMA athletes, should we require much ball-protecting technology?
Sure, fluke accidents happen. But that doesn’t mean you must walk around wearing a helmet and elbow pads. That might 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 inside the nuts by among his kids. That takes place constantly.”
“It does?” I ask this even though I absolutely know he’s right.
I’m a mother or father of the 4-year-old boy, and I’ve been about the receiving end of a barbarous foot or elbow. I’m well aware of what it’s love to be given a crushing ball blast from the kid not of sufficient age yet to realize that scrotums have the identical general effectiveness against blunt force trauma as hard-boiled eggs.
Later that night, as 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 into it this time around!”
“Everything relating to this makes me uncomfortable,” she announces, this way 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 needs to be my soft extremities.
“It’s okay,” I try to explain to her, after pretending to the umpteenth time that my son had caused me irreparable scrotal damage. “This is what boys do.”
He then tries on their own cup-the Diamond MMA people were kind enough to transmit me two-and I give his groin a pounding (although admittedly I pull my punches.)
My partner eventually walks away. She can’t accept it anymore. But my son and I keep laughing, and maintain punching the other from the nuts, amazed at the loud CLUNK our knuckles make every time they connect with what must be testicles.
“This is the greatest evening of my entire life,” my son laughs, falling on the floor, clutching his ribs with laughter.
Testicular violence is definitely not to laugh at. But testicular violence by which nobody gets hurt because of modern technology designed specially for professional athletes? Well, that’s just a reminder that we’re located in a remarkable age, unlike anything our senior high school gym teachers could possibly have imagined.