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Apparently, inas part of a freshman requirement for the city college he attended, all male students took a swim class at the YMCA. He remembers the instructor telling them something about it being more sanitary that way. Was his swim teacher some pervy old dude?
I would think this question has been answered in two previous blog articles about swimming naked. It provided Christian fellowship for young men drawn to the city by jobs that had been created by the industrial revolution. This Christian fellowship offered activities other than frequenting taverns and brothels. The need was obviously great because the YMCA grew quickly as an organization and spread to other countries in Europe and throughout the British Empire and to the U.
The guy on the right side of the picture is wearing a cap. Maybe a swimming cap? This might be two swimmers getting ready to hit the pool and taking the mandatory shower.
Nude swimmingor skinny dippingis the practice of bathing nakedwhether in natural bodies of water, in swimming poolsor in hot tubs. The term skinny-dip was first recorded in English in Bathing by both sexes together had occurred since time immemorial and is documented in neolithic cave drawings and Roman mosaics and frescos.
History of swimwear traces the changes in the styles of men's and women's swimwear over time and between cultures, and touches on the social, religious and legal attitudes to swimming and swimwear. In classical antiquity and in most cultures, swimming was either in the nude or the swimmer would merely strip to their underwear. In the Renaissanceswimming was strongly discouraged, and into the 18th century swimming was regarded as of doubtful morality, and had to be justified on health grounds. In the Victorian era swimwear was of a style of outer clothing of the time, which were cumbersome and even dangerous in the water, especially in the case of dress-style swimwear for women.