A Sport and a Pastime

David Coggins Considers Acceptable Sporting Clothes

Just because you’re exercising doesn’t mean you shouldn’t look dashing. Sportswear SketchTraditional sportswear was very elegant and there’s no reason you should look like a ripe piece of Latex fruit when you’re getting your heart-rate up.

Here are some simple options:

— An old rugby shirt. Doesn’t need to have a logo plastered on it (in fact, much better if it doesn’t). But a few bold stripes of color, faded over the years, and you’re ready for anything.

— European soccer shorts. The more obscure team the better, preferably acquired while you’re in the country. How about St. Pauli? A lower division team from Hamburg, Germany. Loose fitting, comfortable and flattering to all.

— Brightly colored soccer socks. Same rules apply as to the shorts. This is more to avoid white socks that get dirtier and dirtier. Men have been known to hang onto these for a while.

— Lacoste shirts. These began as tennis shirts of course. Now you’re more likely to see them around town with khakis or a blazer. But once they’re worn in then bring them back onto the squash court. Your opponent will be overwhelmed by your stylishness. Long sleeves are even better, he’ll underestimate your sense of impracticality, and you’ll have the upper hand.

— Something nautical. A St. James striped crew is the perfect for a jog. You don’t want to look like the sport is defining you—you want to define the sport. And look well enough that you can stroll to the café afterward and have a double espresso.

 David Coggins considers the perilous state of sporting clothes.

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