We admit that we had to brush up on our Australian English in order to understand what a Tracky Dack is and why Australians celebrate Tracky Dack Day on May 27. Tracky Dack Day is celebrated annually in Australia with great enthusiasm (although the term is Italian, not Australian). To comprehend Tracky Dack Day, one must first recognise that ‘dack’ is Australian English vernacular for trousers. Identical to what Americans commonly refer to as trousers. Long or short, we do not consider denim jeans to be dacks. Tracky’ or ‘trackie,’ spelt either way, is the Australian slang term for a ‘tracksuit,’ that unflattering, kind of masculine but unisex athletic attire also known as a jogging suit and as warm-ups in the United States. Long trousers with an elastic waist (the dacks) and a corresponding waist-length, zippered or pullover jacket, with or without a hood, comprise a tracky. Tracksuits are typically constructed from a warm, plush weave or fleece fabric.
The background of Tracky Dack Day
Tracky dacks, also known as breeches, were designed for athletes in the 1920s. The original design and invention are credited to the French fashion designer Emile Camuzet. The athletic, masculine appearance of sweatpants became popular as urban casual wear in the 1970s, then dominated the 1980s and 1990s, until yoga pants shamelessly invaded public spaces. The popularity of donning track pants had nothing to do with athletic ability. It pertained to the convenience of elastic waistbands in loose-fitting trousers. Who wouldn’t want to appear like they’re on their way to a run or a workout, even if they never go to the gym or exercise?
Although sweatpants are convenient to wear, they are typically baggy, shapeless, and unfashionable. They have never been regarded acceptable professional office attire in Australia or the United States. At least until the turn of the century, when the ‘business casual’ fashion trend emerged. This leads us to the brilliance of Tracky Dack Day.
Tracky Dack Day originated as a fundraiser for the Australian children’s medical charity TLC for Kids. This day followed the American tradition of casual dress on Fridays. White-collar professionals, whose jobs require them to wear traditional suit-and-tie business attire to the office every day, have begun donning ‘business casual’ one day per week, typically on Fridays. The attire for business casual was trousers or dacks, but never jeans, and a collared shirt. The practise ultimately reached Australia as its popularity grew.
On Tracky Dack Day, participants are permitted to wear tracky dacks or sweatpants to the office, bringing casual dress Fridays down several rungs. The fundraiser functions similarly to walk-a-thons and jog-a-thons, but no physical exertion is required. The only requirements for participation are a desire to assist sick children and a willingness to work in comfortable track pants. It is a brilliant idea to recruit individuals who appreciate donating to charity but are averse to running or walking. And the concept of donning sweatpants to work appeals to those who dislike dressing up. “gussied up” is an additional Australian English vernacular term that gained popularity around 1900.
On Tracky Dack Day, Australians encourage one another to “dack up and donate” by joining teams that solicit benefactors or by writing their own checks for the privilege of wearing their tracky dacks to work. Participation is not limited to raising funds for a remarkable children’s charity. Tracky Dack Day is a demonstration of support for hospitalised children, who are encouraged to wear tracky dacks instead of hospital robes or pyjamas in order to participate in a day dedicated to “dacking up and donating” for the children.
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5 REASONS EVERYONE LOVES WEARING TRACKY DACKS
Tracky Dacks, which are sweatpants, were designed for workouts, which means they were made for sweating — not everyone looks buff in yoga pants, so we enjoy wearing tracky dacks to the gym, on a run or at home while sweating to oldies.
Who doesn’t look forward to a refreshing shower and slipping into a pair of track pants for some rest and relaxation after a day of intense work or play?
The ‘little black dress’ is no match for a pair of comfortable track pants.
The more you wear a sweatshirt, the softer and more comfortable it becomes, and we adore the faded appearance after numerous tumbles in the washing machine.
Despite being regarded a fashion faux pas by fashion experts, we wear our tracky dacks with confidence.
TRACKY DACK DAY DATES