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Topless in Japan

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Topless in Japan 2007/4/8 15:34
I recently had my friend from Japan come to stay at my house and I got in a converation about acceptability of a lack of clothing when he saw my school's track. He saw some women who were running in training bras and he saw guys in short shorts and no shirts. I told him it wasn't uncommon to see such spectacles (more common to see guys) and asked if it was appropriate to run and job/excercise topless in Japan in the rural side in the morning or night. He said I would be crazy too and could get arrested. Is this true? I sware I saw many people running Kamogawa in Kyoto topless last time I went. What about beaches and local swimming pools?

(A side note: when I was on the sports team there we had to change our pants into shorts for tennis outside--next to the girls--and the guys just changed on the courts next to the girls. So, they could look at our boxers if they wanted to. I don't get that.)

by Phil  

... 2007/4/8 15:43
He said I would be crazy too and could get arrested. Is this true?

It is okay (although uncommon) for men. Not acceptable for women.

What about beaches and local swimming pools?

Not acceptable for women.

when I was on the sports team there we had to change our pants into shorts for tennis outside--next to the girls--and the guys just changed on the courts next to the girls. So, they could look at our boxers if they wanted to. I don't get that.

I encountered this situation as well. It is not a desired situation, but if there is no easy alternative, it can't be helped. Younger generations (below 40) are likely to be more open towards this issue.

by Uji rate this post as useful

In Japan 2007/4/8 17:26
topless adult women running in public will get arrested for violating the law. I assume this is generally the same in almost any advanced nation. Topless men will not get arrested but can be frowned at if it were in Japan. Unless it's at a swimming beach, it's not that common to be topless.
by Uco rate this post as useful

Thanks 2007/4/9 00:06
I was more concerned with men (I am one) as I like to run in the morning or night topless and shower after because it's just so damn hot.
by Phil rate this post as useful

... 2007/4/9 02:46
" topless adult women running in public will get arrested for violating the law. I assume this is generally the same in almost any advanced nation. Topless men will not get arrested but can be frowned at if it were in Japan. Unless it's at a swimming beach, it's not that common to be topless."
Normally I agree with UcoLs posts, but this one is not totally right, as in most european countries, it is not odd to see topless men and women at public beaches, this has been the case for several years.
by Martin rate this post as useful

laws in Europe? 2007/4/9 09:51
Martin, you're absolutely correct about European beaches, but I assumed that if a woman in Europe is _running_ topless, she might get in trouble. Perhaps I should have wrote "jogging".
by Uco rate this post as useful

not quite topless 2007/4/9 10:11
It sounds like for women OP means topless as in no shirt, but still wearing a bra. In America it's not uncommon for women to run in their sports bra- sports bras are big enough they cover everything, more than even a bikini at the beach! At my barn we even often ride horses in just our sports bras- it's hot in the summer.

But in Japan I haven't seen anything like that- in the summer you don't even see stomach-baring shirts like you see in America.

by Kate rate this post as useful

Clarification 2007/4/9 10:13
Sorry, when I said "training bras" I was thinking of "sports bras." I'm less concerned about that because I'm a guy. I just enjoy running mornings and nights without my shirt because it feels good. Is this acceptable or not? (I will be in Kyoto if it helps.)
by Phil rate this post as useful

. 2007/4/9 10:18
I would lean more towards unacceptable if its not at the beach or resort. For example, just jogging around the city or city park without a shirt, for a male I've never seen in Japan. Nor where I live here in the United States (outside of beach areas).
by John rate this post as useful

probably ok. 2007/4/9 13:40
Basically as a guy you are not breaking any laws and you won't be arrested for running without a shirt, but you will be the only one, and you might get some second looks. You may become known in your neighborhood as "the foreigner who runs without a shirt". If that's okay with you, go for it.
by Sira rate this post as useful

. 2007/4/9 13:58
While there are no laws that I know of that prevents you from doing it, it would certainly be a little out of norm in a urban environment, I can imagine local law enforcement stopping to talk to you for a minute to see whats up.
by John rate this post as useful

Really? 2007/4/9 15:04
Hmph...I thought I saw many people at Kamogawa last time I was in Kyoto shirtless. But, they were inactive and sunbathing.

What if it's in the rural part of the city and night? No problem?

by Phil rate this post as useful

... 2007/4/9 18:43
By "topless" I meant "no shirt", even for women. If you're wearing a bra of any kind, you won't be arrested (but might be frowned at by some people). I've seen a (Caucasian) girl wearing only a perfect black obviously underwear bra and jeans in the middle of Harajuku and everyone was cool. But the other thing is that a lot of Japanese people tend to get stomach-aches if they don't keep their belly warm. I'm not sure if this is genetic or what.
by Uco rate this post as useful

Covering your stomach 2009/5/8 04:10
Uco is that true about getting a stomache ache? I saw it in some animes/mangas and it kind of made me laugh - but i didn't know it was true. LOL!

It also seems like japanese people are really concerned about catching colds - one example i remember is "if you sleep with your stomache showing you'll catch a cold" or something. Do you think japanese worry about it a lot?

by mb2005 rate this post as useful

. 2009/5/8 08:35
mb2005,

I thought that every human being was supposed to hate pain and would try to prevent it if they knew how.

by Uco (guest) rate this post as useful

psychosomatic symptoms 2009/5/8 10:11
Your stomach is very sensitive to what is happening in your mind, for example stress causes many people to get upset stomachs. I would suggest that just worrying that an uncovered stomach will cause a stomach ache could eventually actually cause one. I think that in Japan it would not be so much genetic as psychosomatic- there is no physical reason that exposing your stomach to the air should cause you pain.

Japanese people probably worry more about any other nation in the world about their health, possibly overly so- the prevalence of masks and the reaction here to SARS, bird flu and H1N1 flu illustrate that well.

by Sira (guest) rate this post as useful

not appropriate 2009/5/8 15:25
In my opinon men's and women's wearing shorts in the outside is not a good thing. Of course, in my country some people wear it. Bu it does not look so good.from Azerbaijan
by azeri senem rate this post as useful

topless? 2009/5/8 15:44
I live in Vancouver, where we have beaches and parks by the water.. just the other day someone wrote to the newspaper complaining that at the first sign of warm weather topless men with big fat bellies show up.. Obviously it was the big belly part that especially bothered him. This might also be the case in Japan. Few people would be bothered by a topless guy with a gymnast type body and a good looking face. Unfair but true. Unfortunately, here at least, guys with a big belly and a chest big enough for an XXXL bra couldn't care less!
by Monkey see (guest) rate this post as useful

shirts off 2009/5/8 17:21
I don't think I've ever seen a topless guy with a big belly in Japan- of course the ratio of big bellies on guys is fairly low here. In summer I sometimes see guys in the park or next to jogging trails with their T-shirts off, but they are all usually young and toned, so exposure of large bellies probably isn't so much of an issue here.
by Sira (guest) rate this post as useful

not too much 2009/5/8 17:40
When I was London, guys/men were not having their shirts on, whether they are jogging, or shopping, or in a bus. I think it is disgusting when I have to stand near to the body covered with sweat, in the bus. I am afraid I would accidentally fall on him! So I think this is how far you take it to. If you want to be shirtless when you jog, I think that is totally fine as long as you don't go too far. I have not seen anybody shirtless in Japan before, but if you are sexy, please do it!!
by Khye rate this post as useful

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