Is a Jockstrap Necessary for Running?
While not as rough as contact sports, about half of all runners sustain an injury. In some cases, male runners can develop penile or testicular injury and pain. As a sprinter yourself, this may have made you wonder, "is a jockstrap necessary for running?"
If you feel pain in your crotch whenever you run, then yes, wearing a jockstrap may already be necessary. The same is true if you've already sustained penile or testicular injury. Your doctor may also tell you to wear a jockstrap if you have male reproductive conditions.
Why Is a Jockstrap Necessary for Running?
Running can hinder the testes' "cremasteric reflex," the body's ability to keep them drawn up. This then causes the testicles and the penis to bounce and move a lot, which can cause mild to severe pain. A jockstrap helps prevent all that excessive motion and side-by-side movement.
When Do I Need a Jockstrap for Running?
In the US, an estimated 40 million people are regular runners, with 25% of them running at least 100 days in a year. If you're one of these individuals, you should consider wearing a jockstrap.
It’s also best to wear an athletic supporter if you run long distances. If you have existing pain in the groin area, a jockstrap can prevent it from worsening. This sports protective gear is also beneficial for those with sagging testicles.
Of course, it's also a good idea to wear a jockstrap when you play contact sports like boxing, ice hockey, or football. It can protect your private parts from nausea-inducing pain caused by impact.
How Exactly Can a Jockstrap Help When I Run?
A sports or athletic jockstrap secures the male genitals in place to prevent it from moving too much. The front part, referred to as a "cup" or "shell," protects the penis and testicles from an excessive rebound. The cup also protects these sensitive areas from impact or force, which are common in many sports.
Protection from Excessive Motion
Each testis weighs about 10 to 15 grams on average. When you run, all that weight bounces up and down. Your legs can also bump against and jostle your testicles and penis.
All that excessive motion can then cause a potential stretching of the scrotum. The thing is, the scrotum is only as thin as the eyelid, so it's quite susceptible to pain and injury.
Also, keep in mind that a half-a-mile walk involves about 1,000 steps. If you run the same distance, that means that your testes and penis get bumped around at least 1,000 times. All that movement can cause mild to severe testicular pain.
Therefore, wearing a jockstrap may already be necessary if you're a regular runner. The same goes if you run long distances; the farther you sprint, the more extra force you place on your privates.
Prevent Bruises and Injuries
Running for extended periods can also result in penile and testicular bruises. This can occur when the super-thin skin surrounding the testicles get injured. Such injuries can cause the arteries and veins in the skin to break open.
When these blood vessels sustain damage, they can cause blood to leak under the skin. Aside from soreness and tenderness, these contusions can also cause discoloration. Most bruises do disappear after a few days, but in more severe cases, they can last longer.
Some types of penile and testicular bruises can also result in swelling. This inflammation can then cause more pain and discomfort.
As you can see, wearing a jockstrap may already be necessary if you go for frequent or long runs. This way, you can prevent bruising, swelling, or even eggplant deformity.
Reduced Risks of Eggplant Deformity and Penile Injuries
Eggplant deformities, also known as penile fractures, often occur during an erection. These injuries seem to be rare, with studies reporting only 2,000 cases since 1924.
Still, it's one problem that you definitely don't want to happen to you, as it can lead to long-lasting effects. A penile injury can also happen even without an erection, such as if you trip and fall forward. A blow to the groin area can be so severe that it damages not only the skin but also the penile blood vessels.
In any case, these injuries cause significant pain and inflammation. An injured penis can really swell so much to the point of having an eggplant appearance.
That should be enough reason to protect the penis from such accidents. A jockstrap can provide an extra layer of safety from such injuries.
Keep Varicocele Pain At Bay
Varicoceles are abnormal, enlarged veins in the scrotum, affecting as many as 10% of all men. Every year, this condition prompts between 70 to 80,000 men in the US alone to undergo surgery. These invasive procedures may be necessary for those whose varicoceles are quite painful.
Varicoceles are often harmless, but they can still result in reproductive problems. For instance, up to 40% of men evaluated for infertility have at least one varicocele. These defective veins can also result in decreased sperm quality and production.
Running can worsen varicocele pain since this activity heightens your blood flow. The increased circulation pumps more blood in and out of the defective veins. The pain can also worsen due to the effect of gravity, as well as jostling.
If you suspect that you have varicoceles, be sure to consult your doctor. You should also ask your physician or urologist about wearing a supporter. Depending on the extent of the pain, a jockstrap may be necessary whenever you exercise.
A Safety Barrier for Inelastic Scrotum
Aging is one of the primary reasons behind the scrotum losing elasticity. As the scrotum becomes more inelastic, the thin skin that protects the testes will start to sag. A sagging scrotum, in turn, can be at a higher risk of injuries.
Varicoceles can also result in a sagging scrotum. The sagginess can become even more pronounced during activity or exercise. That's because the defective vein can swell so much as more blood gets pumped into the testes.
This increased blood flow can then trigger the body to drop the testicles even lower. It does so to prevent the testes from becoming too hot. As a result, the scrotum can hang even lower than normal.
A jockstrap may be necessary if scrotum inelasticity causes you pain. It can help prevent "overheating," as it provides better ventilation than compression underwear. So, it's more comfortable and also helps ensure your privates have adequate protection.
How Do You Choose the Right Jockstrap for Running?
The first thing to consider is the circumference of your waist. Small jockstraps are often for children with a waistline of between 22.5 to 28 inches. For adults, jockstraps have elastic bands suitable for waistlines of 28 to 39.5 inches.
Next, make sure that the "cup" or "shell" consists of high-quality materials, such as a soft latex edge. Soft latex helps keep your genitals comfortable while still offering maximum protection. By contrast, too rigid materials can chafe the skin.
You should also choose a jockstrap that offers ease of cleaning and maintenance. For starters, it's best to stick to an athletic supporter with a removable cup or shell. This allows for better and more thorough cleaning and washing of the garment.
It's also important to choose a jockstrap with air holes for ventilation. Proper airflow in the groin is vital during exercise, as the groin is susceptible to sweating. Without adequate ventilation, there's a risk of irritation and pungent odor.
What Are the Best Practices for Using a Jockstrap?
First, make sure that you use a proper-fitting jockstrap. The waistband shouldn't be too tight, as this can impede blood flow. An overly tight waistband can also dig into your skin and cause irritation.
You should also clean and wash your jockstrap after every use. This way, you can avoid dealing with a yeast infection, which dirty garments can promote.
Speaking of garments, make sure that you wear breathable outerwear over your jockstrap. If you're going to wear track pants, choose one that won't over-compress your supporter.
Protect Your Privates During Runs With High-Quality Supporters
There you have it; all the answers to your question, "is a jockstrap necessary for running?" Now, you know how vital it can be to wear one, considering the protection it gives. With an athletic supporter, you can prevent injuries that can have long-lasting effects.
So, before you head out for a long-distance run, consider donning a jockstrap. This way, you can run longer and farther with fewer worries about the safety and health of your genitals.
Ready to shop for high-quality sports protective gear but still have a few questions? Then please don't hesitate to send our team here at PowerRebound a message. We'll be happy to answer all your inquiries!