Whoever designed the uniform for the speed skaters of Team USA is the target of backlash today. The crotch patch that is part of the design of the uniform stands out like a sore thumb, according to some social media users who found this a distraction while attempting to watch the skaters in action.
According to Yahoo News, people are having trouble focusing on the American athletes on the ice with the uniform’s crotch blaring across the screen. The comments popping up on Twitter pretty much describe the thoughts running through the minds of some of those folks watching this sport from the Olympics.
One Twitter user writes that they don’t “understand” the purpose behind the light gray patch that is seen on all the speed skaters’ uniforms. the patch covers the crotch area and moves down the skater’s thighs.
This is seen on the uniforms for both the men and women Olympic speed skaters. When they are standing still it almost looks as if the crotch area bears a circle around it. The sight of the gray patch has distracted many who suggest that it immediately catches the eye of people watching the Olympics on TV at home.
The uniforms for both the women and men speed skaters are mostly covered in a solid blue color, but they are highlighted by large gray ovals on the area of the body that is often called the “private area.” The gray oval is drawing attention to the crotch area, as it appears to unintentionally act as a highlight for the area.
Who in the hell designed the @TeamUSA speed skating suit? And worse yet-who decided “those look good, they really accentuate the crotch!”— Ryan Stelter (@stelter78) February 15, 2018
The reason behind this design is “science-based,” according to Under Armor, the company that made these uniforms. According to Yahoo Sports, the company offers up this explanation.
“‘ArmourGlide’ is a super slick material that apparently reduces friction up to 65%, which I’m told tops the varnish and lubricant charts made famous by world-renowned expert, Clark W. Griswold.”
While that is understandable, it is not the material that is being chastised and debated, it is the choice of color the company used that makes the area stand out like a bullseye. Yahoo reports that the company has yet to share publicly if this material can be produced in any other color besides gray. The New York Post calls the look of these athletes’ uniforms “pervy” in their article title. The Sun is referring to the uniform as having an “alien vagina.” They too refer to the garb as “pervy.”
If Under Armor could make ArmourGlide in the same color blue as the rest of the uniform, this uproar about the look of the uniforms would probably have never surfaced. As it stands now that uniform has highlighted the undercarriage of both the women’s and men’s speed skating uniforms. The women’s uniform seems to be getting the most backlash. It is described by one Twitter user as “Crotch bullseye with a black gash in the center. Wildly inappropriate? Who approved these?”
The look of these uniforms has earned them the nickname of “Olympic crotch pants,” as the eye is drawn to that area as soon as you see the skater get on the ice. As Yahoo suggests, if for some unknown reason the company couldn’t produce those patches in any other color, then this “would explain the reason for highlighting the athlete’s nether-regions.” Some of the Twitter comments are seen below.
Under armour fail. Those poor team USA speed skaters having to wear suits with that gray crotch patch.— johnny utah (@deltakilo22) February 22, 2018
Y’all I’m assuming there is a point to the way the speed skating uniforms are designed, but maaaan that’s a weird place to put a light-colored circle.— Christina Stephens ✨ (@CEStephens) February 19, 2018