Gym shorts, also called PE shorts and PT shorts, are a type of shorts typically worn by people when they engage in physical exercise. They are usually made of fabrics such as nylon, which allow for maximum comfort and ease. Gym shorts and sweatpants are worn by students in many schools during PE or gym classes. There are several variants of gym shorts, such as athletic hotpants, running shorts, and the bloomers worn by schoolgirls in Japan. The common attire worn by students during PE classes - a T-shirt and gym shorts - is called a gym kit, PE kit or PT kit.
Types and styles of wearingEdit
Gym shorts come in various lengths:
- Calf-length shorts
- Knee-length shorts
- Mid thigh-length shorts
- Running shorts, which expose almost the entire leg
- Japanese bloomers, worn by schoolgirls in Japan
The modern "baggy" or "bermuda" style became popular in the United States in the late 1980s and expanded to the rest of the world. However, there are some people who feel that the longer the shorts are, the more restricted their movements are, especially when they are competing in sports. As such, the traditional mid thigh-length gym shorts are returning to popularity in more recent times. Running shorts remain as part of the standard attire worn by athletes in running events.
Modern gym shorts have an inlay made of a comfortable fabric such as cotton, similar to board shorts. These are designed to be worn without underwear. Some men and boys also wear a jockstrap underneath during sport activities to protect their genitals or for modesty purposes, while others wear boxer shorts, briefs or even swimming trunks. In some schools in Asia, schoolgirls sometimes wear gym shorts below their school uniform skirt or pinafore to protect their modesty.
Gym shorts in spankingEdit
In some traditions, especially in mid-20th century British schools, students (both schoolboys and schoolgirls) are required to change into tight gym shorts (with or without underwear underneath) for punishment in the form of strapping, slippering or caning on the buttocks. This was due to the fact that the fabric of gym shorts was thinner than that of the usual uniform trousers, so the gym shorts allow the miscreant to experience the pain more fully while preserving their modesty. Besides, having to change into gym shorts for punishment adds on to the ritualistic aspect of the punishment. In Singapore (a former British colony), this tradition is retained in certain schools, especially in all-boys schools like Victoria School but also in a few co-educational schools such as Damai Secondary School. However, the uniform trousers worn by Singaporean schoolboys are already thin due to the tropical climate, so changing to PE shorts would not make much of a difference, so the wearing of PE shorts is to enhance the ritualistic aspect of the punishment.
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