Good Sport: A Gentleman’s Guide for Dressing, and Conducting Oneself, at a Sporting Event

Most sporting events in the U.S. are sartorially casual affairs for spectators. While you don’t want to overdress, casual does not mean sloppy. You can look relaxed, but still thoughtfully put together.

Here at Henry A. Davidsen, we’re honored to craft fine bespoke suits and made-to-measure clothing for men in Philadelphia, a town known, for better or for worse, for its sports fans.

Philadelphia is also home to some of the most passionate, enthusiastic sports fans on planet Earth. While our city’s sports culture has developed a national reputation for not being as brotherly or loving as our name’s translation would suggest, we know the heart of a gentleman still beats strong in sports enthusiasts here and in cities everywhere. We know you want to look good supporting your team without looking too dressed up — you just might not know exactly how.

In that spirit, we present our Gentleman’s Guide for Dressing and Conducting Oneself at Sporting Events.


Heading straight from work to the game without bothering to change out of your suit will make you stick out like a sore thumb, and it’s just not comfortable. On the flip side, you don’t want to dress like an armchair quarterback cheering the team from the comfort of his own living room.

  • Outfit — Sure, you can bust out that jersey with your own name on the back or tailgate in the hoodie with the giant team logo on the front. Still, we can be more thoughtful when it comes to gameday style. Pair your favorite jeans and classic white sneakers with a monochrome V-neck tee, polo, sweater or even a button-down shirt (with the sleeves rolled up), in a fun shade of your team’s official colors. Depending on the event and weather conditions, a leather, suede or denim jacket can add a playful touch to the ensemble. Of course, if you’re planning an outing to a football game in December or January, we recommend wearing whatever keeps you from freezing!
  • Accessories — If you’re a baseball cap kind of guy, the game is one of the best places to wear it for obvious reasons. If you’re interested in broadening your horizons, it’s possible to find a wide variety of trendy caps — with or without team insignias — that achieve a balance between casual and sophisticated. Look for a cap made with something other than polyester and go for muted, neutral colors that coordinate well with any outfit. Traditional ballcaps, newsboy caps and patrol-style caps all work; it’s a matter of personal preference. Just please don’t turn that cap backward or cock it to the side unless you’re under the age of ten.


When it comes to boorish behavior at sporting events, what is the number one culprit? You guessed it: alcohol. To be clear, we’re not taking a holier-than-thou approach here. Adults can do whatever they’d like, and most men who’ve been of legal drinking age for a while have learned their limits (whether or not they adhere to them is a different story).

Still, a good rule of thumb is to moderate your intake, and your behavior will follow suit. You don’t have to deprive yourself of the joy of knocking back a few brews with your buddies, but you should go in with a plan for just how much you’re going to imbibe, such as:

  • Hydrate yourself all day.
  • Show up fashionably late to the pre-game tailgate party, allowing yourself enough time for just one drink before heading into the stadium.
  • Be sure to make eating a priority.
  • Establish a cutoff point of halftime, second period or fifth inning, depending on the sport, and drink only soda or water after that point. You’d do this anyway if you planned to drive, right?
  • Cheer, high-five, chest bump, and even yell when the time is right. By all means, show your excitement. Just don’t be a rowdy, unruly fan. The professionals ignore that behavior, and other fans don’t want that behavior to ruin their experience.

More Guidance

The tips included here are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to sports fan style and overall gentlemanly etiquette. At Henry A. Davidsen, we offer image consulting services in Philadelphia to help take your look, your career and your social life to the next level.

If you’re ready to take that step, contact us today to schedule an appointment.

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