Use and Popularity
Swim briefs are worn by professional and recreational athletes in many water sports. They are the standard for competitive diving and water polo. They are preferred in competitive swimming for the reduction of the water's drag on the swimmer, although jammers and bodyskins are sometimes worn instead of the swim brief. Participants in sports that require a wetsuit such as waterskiing, scuba diving, surfing, and wakeboarding often wear swim briefs as an undergarment to the wetsuit.
While swim briefs are used worldwide by athletes for water sports, the popularity of swim briefs as casual beachwear and swim wear varies throughout the world. In parts of Australia, Europe and South America, swim briefs are common among male casual swimmers and beach goers. In the United States and, increasingly, the United Kingdom, the roomier and less revealing trunks or board shorts are the suits preferred for recreation, although swim briefs are always seen to some extent. Reasons swim briefs are chosen for recreation include style, ease of movement in the water, sunshine exposure, quick drying time, and the ability to be worn under pants or shorts.
Swim briefs are sometimes worn under board shorts for modesty purposes, and they are often used as an athletic supporter under shorts during sporting activities.
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