Board Shorts by Terry Rich Australia
And as the development of surfing as a sport and pastime gathered momentum so too did the need for speciality surfing equipment and apparel.
Enter surfing wax, chaffed legs and Boardshorts!
Boardshorts evolved from old fashion swimming trunks in the 1960s and 70s. Originally boardshorts were only for surfers. Surfers needed something to wear while surfing that would be long enough to cover the inside of their thighs. Why? Because surfers put wax on their surfboards to make them sticky and easier to stand and paddle on. But while they are waiting for the next wave, surfers sit and straddle their boards. Now if you have wax on the board this can very quickly become painful for your inner thighs as they rub over the wax on the board. And if you're a man with plenty of hair on your legs then it can really hurt! So the extra leg length was not a fashion statement. It was and still is a surfing necessity. The other key feature added was a strong and secure waist tie to keep shorts from being ripped off in rough surf. Another necessity!
So boardshorts evolved to serve surfers better. Today million of surfers and non surfers wear boardshorts while surfing, swimming, strolling and lounging!
Boardshorts traditionally have no lining, unlike traditional swim shorts. Boardshorts are also sometimes called "boardies" in slang, especially in Australia. In South Africa they are know as "baggies".