I vividly remember grim warnings from my senior high school gym teachers, who lectured us on what exactly would happen whenever 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 would be mangled beyond repair.
And therefore 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 stuff that could occur to our nuts during a friendly game of pickleball.
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Having Said That I haven’t wear a jockstrap since sentences like “I’m concered about tomorrow’s algebra test” and “I sincerely think that dry-humping my girlfriend in a slow dance at prom looks like a meaningful relationship milestone” were issues i seriously considered regularly.
Which is, until a public relations rep for Diamond MMA compression jock and cup system-readily available for just $90-sent us a complimentary set a couple of weeks ago.
If your first thought was, “Hey, isn’t the same cup Dairy Queen uses of their Banana Splits?”, we are totally about the same page.
In the beginning, I left it in my desk, like a sort of perverse tip jar. I even briefly tried it as being a makeshift container for pens and Post-It notes.
I decided to strap it on for that Men’s Health Monday morning editorial meeting.
There’s something weirdly exhilarating about going to work wearing the kind of testicular protection usually reserved for MMA athletes.
Because once your balls are that ensconced, you realize, without a shadow of a doubt, that this day won’t end with you being rushed for the emergency room with internal scrotal bleeding.
Naturally, you could point out that about most days-especially when your task, like mine, involves extended periods of typing on the computer, or having conversations with calm, entirely nonviolent those who are unlikely to judo chop you in the nuts unexpectedly.
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 the business end of their shoes into my giggleberries.
Not surprisingly, there are no takers.
Afterward, I purchased to talking with some my male coworkers about balls-hey, these topics just come up-and what, if something, we’re doing to protect them. I discovered that not much of a single one of them wears jockstraps anymore.
Not just throughout the office. Even at the gym. Or wherever they workout. They’re essentially free-balling it.
Jay Ferrari, a regular 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.”
Why then not? Why were jockstraps necessary within our youth, but not a whole lot in 2015?
When our high school graduation gym coaches warned us in the testicular Armageddon that could be a consequence of letting our boys dangle unprotected, were they loaded with shit?
“Probably,” says Brian Steixner, M.D., Director of your 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, at the very least among non-pro athletes, he insists it rarely happens.
Of your approximately 2,500 patients he treats each year, only about a pair of those are suffering from scrotal injury.
How does it happen? “Maybe a horse kicked them from the balls,” he says. “Or there is an automobile accident where the controls went within their nuts. Sometimes it is related to farm equipment or heavy machinery. Your task involves pulling a strap and something breaks and snaps.”
Put simply, nothing that’s prone to happen to you. (Aside from the auto accident. But even then, using a controls rammed into your balls may seem like a lengthy shot.)
“Modern boxer briefs just about solves the issue,” he says. “You don’t have to wear this weird contraption which includes these straps that wrap around your butt. You can put on tight-fitting underwear, as it does everything a jockstrap did, which can be keep things high and tight. That’s all you need.”
While underwear has changed, little changed in jockstrap and cup technology, which first came into vogue throughout the late 1800s.
“A jockstrap is a jockstrap, today as it was in the past,” says Kevin Flaherty, whose great-great-great-grandfather founded among the first jockstrap manufacturers in the nation, the J.B. Flaherty Company, Inc., in 1898.
In the past 100-plus years, the materials have changed. Flaherty’s company-now Martin Inc., which produces Flarico, Bub, and Activeman products-has evolved from knitted waistbands and straps into convenient woven products.
The waistbands currently have a plush back, and then there isn’t a three-inch-wide component of rough elastic. But furthermore, and a few fashion colors, there hasn’t been plenty of dexjpky93 in the design.
Except, of course, for models like the Diamond MMA. Their compression-jock-and-cup technique is made of polycarbonate, a durable thermoplastic material that’s utilized in bulletproof glass.
Which may be useful when your job requires people looking to kill you, or at least severely damage your yam bag. However, for us non-MMA athletes, should we require very much ball-protecting technology?
Sure, fluke accidents happen. But that doesn’t mean you should walk around wearing a helmet and elbow pads. That will 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 from the nuts by among his kids. That occurs all the time.”
“It does?” I ask this although I absolutely know he’s right.
I’m a mother or father of your 4-year-old boy, and I’ve been in the receiving end of the barbarous foot or elbow. I’m well aware of what it’s want to receive a crushing ball blast coming from a kid not old enough yet to understand that scrotums have similar general resistance to blunt force trauma as hard-boiled eggs.
Later that night, when 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 whole body with it this time!”
“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 I just laugh, and he will continue to deliver blow after merciless blow onto what must be my soft extremities.
“It’s okay,” I try to convey to her, after pretending to the umpteenth time that my son had caused me irreparable scrotal damage. “This is just what boys do.”
He then tries on his own cup-the Diamond MMA people were kind enough to deliver me two-and so i give his groin a pounding (although admittedly I pull my punches.)
My wife eventually walks away. She can’t accept it anymore. But my son and I keep laughing, whilst keeping punching one another within the nuts, amazed at the loud CLUNK our knuckles make when they connect to what must be testicles.
“This is the best evening of my entire life,” my son laughs, falling onto the floor, clutching his ribs with laughter.
Testicular violence is absolutely nothing to laugh at. But testicular violence by which nobody gets hurt due to modern technology designed specially 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 may have imagined.