A jockstrap (also known as a jock, jock strap, strap, supporter, or athletic supporter) is an undergarment originally designed for supporting the male genitalia during sports or other vigorous physical activity. More recently, 'fashion jockstraps' have become popular as regular underwear worn by men as an alternative to other styles. Jockstraps for its athletic purposes are most commonly worn in North America.
Before every football season, coaches send out an equipment list as a reference for the players. The equipment list includes various items such as a mouthpiece and cleats, but one of the most important pieces of equipment is the jock -- commonly referred to as an athletic supporter or jockstrap. The football jock serves many purposes for the athlete.
Unlike jockstraps for some other sports, football jockstraps must fulfill many duties. First, they must provide firm support when you're running down the field. Second, they've got to protect your package from hard football cleats in the event that you end up on the bottom of a pile-up. And lastly, they need to look sexy when the uniform comes off. Okay, that last one's not mandatory.
Original football jocks were made from basic cotton materials, but they now are made from a combination of synthetic materials. These fabrics help move moisture from the inside to the surface and are more comfortable than older versions. The waistband is typically made from synthetic elastic, while the rest of the jock is made from a micro-mesh for a lightweight, breathable material. The cup is made from a hardened plastic with a soft gel lining to protect you skin from rubbing or severe impact.
Football jocks are available in several different styles to match the individual body type or preference of the athlete. For example, skill position players, such as running backs and wide receivers, may want a slim fit for maximum mobility, while a lineman may want extra protection. The traditional style includes a basic front protective flap with two leg openings. Another style of the football jock is integrated into a pair of shorts -- called a girdle -- that also fits the thigh and hip pads.
Similar to other football equipment, the football jock must fit properly to ensure maximum safety and protection. The jock must feel comfortable. It should be snug, but not restrict movement or mobility. If the jock doesn't feel comfortable, you can wear it over a pair of compression shorts. Consult a sizing guide for specific information on how a particular style of jock is designed to fit.