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Why Do Some Running Shorts Have a Liner? An All-Encompassing Analysis Why Do Some Running Shorts Have a Liner? An All-Encompassing Analysis


Why Do Some Running Shorts Have a Liner? An All-Encompassing Analysis

Delve into the world of running shorts and discover the purpose and benefits of the built-in liner. This comprehensive analysis explores why some running shorts feature a liner, also known as a brief or compression short.

In the world of running apparel, every feature has a purpose – from the fabric choice, the design, down to the littlest details like zippers and drawstrings. One feature that often piques curiosity and generates some debate is the humble liner found in some running shorts. If you’ve ever wondered, “Why do some running shorts have a liner?” you’re certainly not alone. This comprehensive article will offer a deep-dive analysis into the role and significance of the liner in running shorts.

Understanding the Anatomy of Running Shorts

Running shorts, though seemingly simple, are a product of thoughtful design and technical engineering, aimed at enhancing comfort and performance for runners. Various features are integrated into these shorts, each serving its unique purpose. One such feature that we find in some running shorts is the liner.

What is a Liner in Running Shorts?

A liner in running shorts is essentially an inner layer of fabric that acts somewhat like built-in underwear. Liners are typically made of lightweight, breathable, and moisture-wicking material designed to provide support and reduce friction while running. The presence of a liner can vary depending on the type and style of running shorts.

The Purpose of a Liner in Running Shorts

Now, let’s delve into the crux of the matter: why do some running shorts have a liner? Here are some compelling reasons:


The liner’s primary role is to provide support during running. The snug fit of the liner helps keep everything in place, minimizing discomfort during a run.

Reduction of Chafing

The liner reduces the skin-on-skin friction that can lead to chafing. By having a smooth layer of fabric between your skin and the shorts, you can significantly reduce the risk of irritation caused by friction.

Moisture Management

Liners are typically made from moisture-wicking materials, which help pull sweat away from the skin, keeping you dry and comfortable during your run.

Freedom from Underwear

With a liner, there’s no need to wear additional undergarments. This allows for unrestricted movement and fewer layers to contend with, making your run more enjoyable.

The Types of Liners

You can find two main types of liners in running shorts:

  • Brief Liners: These are the most common type of liners, similar to traditional underwear in terms of coverage and support.
  • Compression Liners: These liners are longer, covering a larger portion of the thigh, providing more muscle support, and further reducing the risk of chafing.

Your choice between the two would depend on personal preference and the kind of running activity you prefer.

The Case for Liner-less Running Shorts

While liners offer numerous benefits, not all running shorts come equipped with them. Here are a few reasons why some runners prefer liner-less shorts:

Underwear Preference

Some runners prefer wearing their own choice of undergarments for support or comfort.


For some, liners can cause irritation due to the material, the seam location, or the fit.

Temperature Regulation

In hot climates, extra layers can contribute to overheating, and liner-less shorts offer a cooler option.


Running shorts with liners provide multiple benefits, including support, reduced chafing, and effective moisture management. However, whether or not you choose running shorts with a liner is entirely up to personal preference and comfort. Understanding the purpose and benefits of liners can help you make an informed decision that enhances your running experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do some running shorts have a liner?

Running shorts have a liner to provide support, reduce chafing, manage moisture, and eliminate the need for additional undergarments.

What types of liners are there in running shorts?

There are two main types of liners in running shorts: brief liners, which offer coverage similar to traditional underwear, and compression liners, which cover a larger portion of the thigh for extra support and chafing reduction.

Can I wear running shorts without a liner?

Yes, you can wear running shorts without a liner. However, you may need to wear supportive undergarments, depending on the level of comfort and support you require.

Is the liner in running shorts the same as underwear?

The liner in running shorts serves a similar purpose as underwear, providing support and reducing skin friction. However, it’s built into the shorts and typically made of moisture-wicking fabric designed for athletic performance.

Can I remove the liner from my running shorts?

Yes, you can remove the liner from your running shorts, but remember, this is a permanent modification. It’s important to consider the loss of support, comfort, and moisture management that comes with removing the liner.