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Beneath the Board Shorts: Do Guys Wear Anything Underneath? Beneath the Board Shorts: Do Guys Wear Anything Underneath?

Design: Best Running Shorts

Beneath the Board Shorts: Do Guys Wear Anything Underneath?

In the world of running, board shorts aren’t the first garment that comes to mind. Typically associated with water sports, particularly surfing, these light, fast-drying shorts are actually a viable option for runners who value their comfort and freedom of movement. And so, a curious question emerges: do guys wear anything under board shorts when they run? Let’s dive into the underlayers of this topic.

Anatomy of Board Shorts

Understanding the construction of board shorts is important to answer the above question. Originally designed for “board sports” like surfing and paddleboarding, these shorts were made to be comfortable, lightweight, and quick-drying. They usually feature:

  • Lightweight material: Board shorts are typically made of polyester or nylon for their light weight and fast-drying properties.
  • Longer length: Unlike other types of shorts, board shorts usually extend to the knee or slightly above, providing more coverage.
  • No elastic waist: Instead of an elastic waistband, board shorts usually have a rigid waistband with a lace-up tie, similar to swimming trunks.
  • No inner lining: Most board shorts don’t include an inner mesh lining, unlike many swimming trunks.

Given their design and structure, board shorts provide a lot of freedom of movement, making them a versatile garment suitable for various activities, including running.

Underneath the Board Shorts: To Wear or Not to Wear?

When it comes to wearing something under board shorts, the decision ultimately comes down to personal preference. Here are some factors that can influence that choice:

  • Comfort: Without an inner lining, board shorts may cause discomfort due to chafing, especially during long runs. Wearing a base layer, such as compression shorts or briefs, can help prevent this.
  • Support: Some men may prefer to wear something underneath for additional support during physical activity. In this case, wearing fitted underwear or compression shorts under board shorts can provide that extra support.
  • Modesty: Depending on the material and color of the board shorts, they may become somewhat see-through when wet. For those concerned about modesty, wearing a layer underneath can provide peace of mind.

Options for Under Board Shorts

If you choose to wear something under your board shorts, here are a few options:

  • Compression shorts: These provide good support and can help prevent chafing. As they’re close-fitting, they won’t add bulk under your board shorts.
  • Sports briefs or boxers: Choose a pair made with performance fabrics that wick away sweat and don’t absorb moisture. Avoid cotton as it absorbs sweat and takes longer to dry.
  • Swim jammers: If your run might involve a dip in the water, consider swim jammers. They’re like compression shorts but made from swimwear material.
  • Nothing: If comfort and freedom of movement are your top priorities and you’re not worried about potential chafing or modesty, you can opt to wear nothing under your board shorts.

Board Shorts and Running: An Unconventional Pairing

While board shorts aren’t a typical choice for running, they can be a comfortable alternative to traditional running shorts for some men. Their lightweight and fast-drying material and lack of restrictive inner lining can offer benefits for runners. Whether to wear something underneath or not depends largely on personal preference, taking into account factors such as comfort, support, and modesty.


Do guys wear anything under board shorts?

Whether guys wear anything under board shorts varies based on personal comfort, the need for support, and considerations for modesty. Some men prefer to wear compression shorts, sports briefs, or swim jammers underneath, while others may prefer to wear nothing at all.

Why don’t board shorts have a liner?

Board shorts originally were designed for surfing and other board sports. The lack of a liner provides a greater range of motion and less chafing when spending long periods of time on a surfboard. This design has been retained in modern board shorts.

Can board shorts be used for running?

Yes, board shorts can be used for running. They are lightweight and offer a lot of freedom of movement, which is beneficial when running. However, because they lack a liner, some men may choose to wear a base layer for additional support and comfort.

What’s the difference between board shorts and running shorts? 

Running shorts are typically shorter, have an inner lining for support, and often include pockets for carrying essentials like keys or a phone. Board shorts are longer, lack a liner, and have a rigid waistband that ties up, similar to swim trunks.

Do all board shorts not have an inner liner?

Most board shorts do not include an inner liner. This design is intended to provide maximum freedom of movement. However, there are variants in the market that include a liner for those who prefer one.