Classic Physique Posing Trunks: Like Mike

The new Classic Physique division of NPC competition is easily identified at a glance by the “spandex short” style of posing trunks used. The history of these trunks may seem short, but the inspiration for the decision dates back 20-25 years, and was heavily influenced by “The Greatest to Ever Play the Game,” Michael Jordan.

To our knowledge, Michael Jordan has never entered into a bodybuilding competition, and yet has now left an indirect mark upon the industry. To understand this impact we have to first take a look at basketball attire and the men’s underwear of choice in the 80s and 90s.


Lucky Shorts


In the 80s, men unanimously wore what we would now call “short shorts” when playing basketball, Jordan included. Michael was a prodigy player in the collegiate circuit prior to his amazing career with the Chicago Bulls. Jordan wanted to bring the fortune he experienced at the college level over to the NBA when he turned pro, which led to him wearing his “short shorts” from his time at the University of North Carolina under his Bulls shorts.

Michael Jordan had a lucky pair of shorts, and he inadvertently changed basketball attire by creating shorts big enough to hide the white and blue ones beneath. Had any normal player worn slightly longer and baggier shorts than the norm, it may have just been seen as a quirk. However, Michael Jordan was not a normal player, and with the world watching his rise to greatness it was only a matter of time before the “I Wanna Be Like Mike” craze influenced even the other pros. By the early 2000s nearly every player was wearing baggier, knee length shorts.

But that’s basketball, how does that have anything to do with classic physique? Well, simply put, Jordan’s reach into our wardrobe did not stop at the court.


“Boxers, or Briefs?”


To the average man in the 90s the choice was simple: boxers or briefs. While there were some high-fashion trends that were pushing the new “boxer briefs,” what was found on the shelf at a local department store was either boxers or briefs. Queue the 1997 Hanes commercial featuring the by-now marketing sensation version of Michael Jordan. This ad features two women sitting on a bench playfully wondering whether the men walking by are wearing boxers or briefs. When Jordan coolly walks by, they look at him stunned as he says “they’re Hanes, let’s leave it at that.”

This opened the door for Hanes to begin marketing their new take on the affordable boxer brief, featuring an entire series of Jordan and the new boxer briefs. “Ah ha!” people then must have thought, Jordan doesn’t wear boxers or briefs, he wears the best of both at once! This multi-angle approach launched the boxer brief into underwear drawers nationwide. Now, the various forms of boxer briefs are the underwear-of-choice for a huge number of American men. Additionally, very few men, especially in the younger generations ever wear briefs.

Again, that is the power of the “Like Mike” mentality at work.

Traditional Bodybuilding Trunks Are Pre-Mike


Bodybuilding, the Arnold classic bodybuilding especially, predates the “Like Mike” days. When bodybuilders began wearing small, brief-like trunks it was a fairly obvious choice, as it was very likely that most of the men in the competition wore briefs as their everyday underwear. For the new generation of bodybuilder looking to go classic, the psychological effect of wearing briefs is a tough hurdle to jump. Many younger men have not worn briefs in their entire adult life, let alone in under a spotlight. For many men, that is the stuff of nightmares.

The Jordan impact on the Classic Physique Trunks is simple: they are longer, and they are much more like boxer briefs than traditional trunks. When the NPC created the Classic Physique division, they did so with changing times in mind, and are trying to appeal to what their athletes want. And male athletes, especially those considering trying bodybuilding for the first time, simply do not want to wear a tiny set of briefs for their first on-stage endeavor.

Stay up on your game, and browse our numerous colors for NPC and NSL approved Classic Physique bodybuilding trunks Here.