Do Running Shorts Have Built In Underwear

As an avid runner, I often find myself facing the dilemma of choosing the right pair of running shorts. One question that frequently comes up in my mind is whether running shorts have built-in underwear or not. It’s a topic that can spark a lively debate among runners, with some swearing by shorts with built-in underwear and others preferring to go commando or wear separate compression shorts. In this article, I will delve into this topic and share my personal insights and experiences.

Why Built-in Underwear?

One of the primary reasons why some running shorts have built-in underwear is for added support and comfort. The built-in underwear acts as a layer that provides additional support to the sensitive areas. It can help reduce friction and chafing during long runs, offering a more comfortable running experience.

Moreover, the built-in underwear eliminates the need for wearing separate compression shorts or underwear, simplifying your running attire. This can be especially convenient during hot summer runs when you want to feel as light and free as possible.

But Why Not?

On the other hand, there are runners who prefer to ditch the built-in underwear for various reasons. Some find that the built-in underwear doesn’t offer enough support, or they may have specific preferences for the type of underwear they wear. Others may find that the built-in underwear tends to ride up or bunch, causing discomfort and distraction during their runs.

Furthermore, wearing separate compression shorts or underwear allows for more customization and personalization. Runners can choose the specific type of compression or moisture-wicking material that works best for them, rather than being limited to the built-in underwear provided with the shorts.

My Personal Experience

Having tried both types of running shorts, I can say that it ultimately comes down to personal preference. I have found shorts with built-in underwear to be quite comfortable for shorter runs or when the weather is hot. They provide adequate support and eliminate the need for extra layers. However, during longer runs or when I’m looking for more compression and support, I prefer wearing separate compression shorts.

It’s important to note that the fit and design of the shorts can also greatly affect the overall comfort and performance. Some shorts have a more relaxed fit with loose built-in underwear, while others have a snugger fit and more supportive built-in underwear. Finding the right pair of shorts that cater to your specific needs and preferences is key.


In the end, the decision of whether to choose running shorts with built-in underwear or not boils down to personal preference, comfort, and individual needs. There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. It’s essential to experiment with different types of shorts and listen to your body to determine what works best for you.

Regardless of your choice, the most important thing is to prioritize comfort and support during your runs. Whether you opt for shorts with built-in underwear or prefer to wear separate compression shorts, finding the right fit and material is crucial for an enjoyable and injury-free running experience. Happy running!