A jockstrap (also known as a jock, jock strap, strap, supporter, or athletic supporter) is an undergarment designed for supporting the male genitalia during sports or other vigorous physical activity. A jockstrap consists of a waistband (usually elastic) with a support pouch for the genitalia and two elastic straps affixed to the base of the pouch and to the left and right sides of the waistband at the hip. The pouch, in some varieties, may be fitted with a pocket to hold an impact resistant cup to protect the testicles and/or the penis from injury.
The word jockstrap has purportedly been in use at least since 1888, a likely contraction of 'jockey strap', as the garment was first designed for bicycle riders, or 'bike jockeys'. The Bike Jockey Strap was the first jockstrap manufactured in America in 1874.
Jockey meaning 'rider', primarily a race horse rider, has been in use since 1670. Jockey itself is the diminutive form of the Scots nickname Jock (for John) as Jackie is for the English nickname Jack. The nicknames Jack and Jackie, Jock and Jockey have been used generically for 'man, fellow, boy, common man'. From the period c.1650-c.1850, 'jock' was used as slang for penis.
The more recent slang term 'jock', meaning an athlete, is traced to 1959 and is itself derived from 'jockstrap'.