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The Best Men’s Athletic Shorts

Last updated on September 23, 2022
Best Men's Athletic Shorts

Our Review Process

Don't Waste Your Money is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to. Learn more.

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Our Picks For The Top Men's Athletic Shorts

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Product Overview
Key Takeaway
 Top Pick

Profectors Machine Washable Men’s Athletic Shorts, 4-Pack

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Machine Washable Men’s Athletic Shorts, 4-Pack

If you prefer your men's athletic shorts to sit above the knee, then this 4-pack is an excellent choice. The shorts are lightweight and have a loose fit, which makes them perfect for workouts in the gym, flag football with friends and cycling down a mountain path. Thanks to the elastic waistband and built-in drawstring, the shorts are also have a c...

Overall Take

Moisture-Wicking CapabilitiesThese men's athletic shorts are quick to dry, so you stay cool while enjoying your favorite activities.

 Runner Up

Essential Elements Quick-Dry Men’s Athletic Shorts, 5-Pack

Essential Elements

Quick-Dry Men’s Athletic Shorts, 5-Pack

Designed to fall just below the knee, this men's athletic shorts 5-pack is perfect for active individuals. The shorts are made to quickly wick away moisture, so you stay dry and comfortable. They feature two deep side pockets and are outfitted with a drawstring for a custom fit.

Overall Take

Most VersatileUse these men's athletic shorts when going for a run, playing a game of hoops or simply lounging around the house.

 We Also Like

Champion Classic Cotton Shorts For Men


Classic Cotton Shorts For Men

These jersey cotton shorts are soft and comfortable. They have a drawstring closure for flexibility. The shorts are machine washable and have side pockets for holding your valuables. They're available in mostly neutral colors, with sizing up to 4X.

Overall Take

Soft and ComfortableMade from jersey cotton, these stylish Champion shorts for men with side pockets feel soft to the touch.

 Best Running Shorts

Pinkbomb Compression Support Running Shorts For Men


Compression Support Running Shorts For Men

If you’re looking for a comfortable but attractive pair of shorts, these lightweight shorts are a great option. The shorts have an inner layer of compression tights with an outer layer of mesh fabric that’s lightweight and breathable. The compression shorts have built-in elastic to support your muscles without inhibiting movement, and an elasti...

Overall Take

Won't Restrict MovementWhether you’re working out at the gym, going for a run or just hanging out around the house, these lightweight shorts keep you moving.

Buying Guide

Men’s athletic shorts generally come in three styles: compression shorts, biker shorts and basketball shorts. The first two are on the tighter side, and they hug and support the body.

Basketball shorts are roomier and are seen in non-athletic scenarios much more often. They can be worn to work out at the gym, out to run errands or simply for hanging out at home. You can even sleep in them.

Compression and biking shorts are designed for more specific purposes, without as much of a focus on fashion.

Basketball shorts come in many different colors and patterns and hit at the knee or lower, at about 9 to 10 inches. Basketball shorts are arguably the most popular kind of athletic shorts.

Some men prefer shorter lengths, especially for active sports like volleyball or running. For these activities, a length of about 5 inches is better, and you can also find athletic shorts in a 7-inch length. The type of material is also important; many are made with polyester with other materials added for moisture control and stretch.

What to Look For

  • If you will be working out or playing sports in your new shorts, look for athletic shorts that have moisture-wicking capabilities.
  • Shorts that are made with four-way stretch material expand out lengthwise and crosswise for ease of motion.
  • Pockets are another important feature. Look for pockets with zippers if you are concerned about losing your wallet, keys or phone while you are in motion.
  • Lined workout shorts may be more or less comfortable, depending on what sport you’re using them for and your preferences.

More to Explore

Back in the early 20th century, men would never be seen out in public wearing athletic shorts — they were reserved for the gym only.

Athletic shorts are still worn at gyms, but people wear them year-round, in stores, restaurants, out on the street and in other social settings. Comfort is more of a priority these days, so you don’t have to worry about being hot and uncomfortable during the summer — or any other time of year, for that matter!

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