The polo shirt is exactly what it sounds like: a shirt designed for the comfort of athletes in other sports and polo players. The shirt took over the long-sleeved, buttoned-down, collared, cotton fabric, undoubtedly uncomfortable ones that had been worn in the 1800s.
In the 1930's Rene Lacoste, a tennis player cut off the long sleeves and only applied buttons part way down on his shirts for tennis players. The collar still protected the back of the neck from the sun but was more comfortable with the top buttons open.
You can also buy polo shirts at oobebrand.com/collections/polos.
Polo Shirts became a fashion necessity when Ralph Lauren included them in his 1972 fashion line that he tagged "Polo". As the years passed and business casual grew to be acceptable (at least one day a week), these shirts became part of every man's clothing closet. Polo Shirts (tucked in) are acceptable in most casual situations.
A Polo Shirt is dressier than a t-shirt. It has a collar and 3 or 4 button placket. Usually, the shirts are made of knitted cotton pique or jerseys. Soft and comfortable materials which are easy to care for and have "give" for active movement.
They have become favored in golf and other sports due to their positive playing qualities. Gradually various appliqués have been added as decoration, many now indicate specific teams or even company logos.