During the 1960s, guys on high school basketball teams wore tight shorts and sleeveless, tank top shirts.
Girls on high school volleyball teams during the same era wore loose-fitting jumpers over roomy blouses and shorts.
Fifty years later, guards, setters, forwards and hitters are still active. But the athletes have switched fashion notions.
Boys have given up their snug looks for baggy shorts favored by collegiate and professional players. Tank tops are still part of the uniform, but T-shirts are often used for extra coverage and warmth. The well-dressed young woman around the volleyball net wears a tighter shirt than her 1960 counterparts. Tighter shorts, too.
Volley girls have never seemed to fuss much about their school-issued play clothes. In 1960, young women who were members of the Niskayuna Girls’ Athletic Association wore jumpers with a circular badge in the center, signifying allegiance to both sports and the Silver Warriors. By 1988, the modest jumpers were gone. Niskayuna stars like Katie Brainard wore shorts and shirts — not too loose, and not too tight.
Athletes who go to the net in 2010 don’t want any extra fabric slowing them down. The snug look is the current rage, for higher jumps and harder swats at the ball.
“It’s just like clothes,” said Katie Brainard Perkins, who now lives in Beverly, Mass., of volleyball fashions. “It’s fun to look back and see how they’ve changed.”