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TECHNICAL LIBRARY

In this section you will find a comprehensive range of articles from WSA magazine, dating back as far as 2000. To obtain the articles online in PDF format, you must first set up an account. Articles cover innovation at different levels in the performance textiles value chain, including developments with polymers, fibres, yarns, fabrics, finishes and final products from the apparel, footwear and equipment ranges of sports and outdoor brands around the world.



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SPORTS SPECIFIC

more than 200 Items Found

 
Seeing stars
HeiQ China’s CEO updates WSA on the consumer market in China and explains how environmental policies are enacting profound change.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2019
Micam celebrates sports shoe success
The Milan footwear exhibition Micam added a new component for its September 2019 show. For the first time, sports and outdoor brands were able to show off their latest collections in a dedicated space called the Players’ District.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2019
VF’s new London HQ ‘shows commitment’
Five brands tell WSA about upcoming launches and strategies, as well as how the seven-storey Axtell Soho will boost their standing in Europe.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2019
Castore takes aim at sportswear sector
UK-based brand Castore has already raised significant funding as it seeks to provide a premium alternative to the leading names of the sportswear market. Securing the support of tennis star Andy Murray can’t do any harm to its chances of achieving this goal.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2019
Selkie Swim opens the door to nature
Newcomers: Selkie Swim UK-based Selkie Swim’s aim is to create products that allow open water swimmers of all abilities to push their boundaries. It also recognises its obligation to help protect the natural spaces that make this invigorating activity possible.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2018
Helly Hansen rides the wave of Volvo Ocean Race
Newcomers: Helly Hansen’s Ægir offshore sailing collection. The round-the-world Volvo Ocean Race proved the ideal testing ground for some of the products in Helly Hansen’s new offshore sailing collection.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2018
The race to Russia
NEWCOMERS: 2018 FIFA WORLD CUP. From June 14 to July 15 the eyes of the world will be on Russia as the 2018 FIFA World Cup rolls into town. WSA looks at some of the innovative products sports brands have developed ahead of the tournament.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2018
The brand that invented activewear
Although some might dispute it, Brisbane-based brand Lorna Jane claims to have invented the term ‘activewear’ and to have shared not just its clothing collections but its philosophy for a healthy lifestyle with millions of women across Australia and, now, around the rest of the world too.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2017
Making waves
The difference between greenwashing and not greenwashing is action, says Patagonia. Its latest product that will be offered to its competitors – the Personal Surf Inflation vest – will indirectly protect an endangered surf point in Peru.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2017
Emerald finds new home for industry gem
Trade show organiser Emerald Expositions is responsible for events catering to industries as diverse as construction and drones. In the outdoor industry, it is best known for organising the biannual Outdoor Retailer exhibition, which will have a new home in Denver from 2018.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2017
Back in the saddle
Cycling apparel brand Giordana is making a return to elite-level competition, supplying two UCI World Tour teams with its latest range of innovation-led clothing.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2017
Game Changers: Alberto Bichi
Sporting goods manufacturers are affected by scandals: Alberto Bichi, secretary general of Brussels based lobbying body FESI, became more prominent at the end of 2016 when he announced that his organisation was making sporting integrity one of its top priorities.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2017
Brand Profile: Finisterre
Finisterre questions everything: Cold-water surf brand Finisterre is committed to responsible manufacturing. It also encourages its customers to think more about the products they buy.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2016
Footwear Technology: Enda
Enda targets pacesetters of running shoe market: Kenyan start-up Enda believes the country’s reputation as a producer of world-class runners means it should be capable of also producing world-class running shoes.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2016
Babolat makes a racket
Brand Profile: Babolat - A study into the strangely secretive tennis racket market found by “industry consensus” that Babolat is top of the tree. It’s a remarkable feat given that the French company only began manufacturing rackets in 1994.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2016
More than mileage
There’s more to choosing the right apparel for extreme runs than meets the eye, as Shari Shallard has found out from researching the subject in depth and from her own running experience.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2016
New ventures in mountain-bike clothing
With a surge of new disciplines, a fast-growing off-road pedelec market and outdoor brands moving in, mountain-bike apparel is quietly morphing into a new action sportswear category.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2016
Where soccer and snooker part company
Millions of people get their kicks watching 22 men chase one ball around a swathe of green. Millions of people also get their kicks watching one man chase 22 balls around a swathe of green.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2016
Brand Profile: Wizwedge
Not here to make up the numbers: With football’s European Championship fast approaching, the threat of a star player being denied his moment in the spotlight by injury is at its peak. Managers have resisted the pressure from fans to wrap their key players in cotton wool as domestic seasons across Europe drew to a close. Meet the Marseille-based start-up trying to make this pretournament anxiety a thing of the past.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2016
Game Changers: Janice Wang, Alvanon
A fitting tribute: Alvanon first brought its sizing and fit technology to the global apparel market in 2001 and is now famous for high-tech mannequins. Chief executive, Janice Wang, is proud of being (with her brothers) a third-generation representative of a hands-on garment-making family. She is equally proud of leading Alvanon’s wider efforts to help its clients in 89 countries use data to improve their businesses internally and engage more effectively externally with existing and new customers.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2016
New yoga tribes
Lululemon is targeting $1 billion in sales from its men’s business by 2020 after a 250% growth in the market in four years, while small companies are addressing the burgeoning antenatal sector.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2016
Rise To The Challenge: Yulex / Patagonia
Patagonia waves goodbye to neoprene: After years of looking for alternatives, the brand has declared a ‘world first’, with all suits from autumn 2016 neoprene-free.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2016
The kits and the cachet
You know we’re at an odd crossroads in women’s professional football when the clerk working at a video game store – a teen who’s never watched a professional football match in his life – knows who Alexandra Morgan is, yet several sportswear megabrands tend to only issue press releases pertaining to male football teams. Granted, this clerk only knows about Morgan, a forward on the United States Women’s National Team, because he’s sold several copies of the Fifa 16 game, but he does know and he’s not the only one.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2016
Swinging in the rain
The image of golf is being refreshed by the astonishing ability of a more youthful group of top players who are capturing the world headlines. However, no matter at what age you take to the greens, keeping dry, warm and comfortable remains key to enjoying the sport.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2015
WSA - The Second 10 Years
A brief timeline in textiles and sports, Part 2.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2015
Brand Profile: Aqua Sphere
Making a splash: Michael Phelps has teamed up with the Italian company to make use of its ‘first compression fabric for water’ for his spin-off brand, MP.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2015
WSA - The First Ten Years
A brief timeline WSA in textiles and sports.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2015
Brand Profile: Russell Athletic
School of hard knocks: Russell Brands has a colourful history, from being one the largest manufacturers of athletic goods in the US to retrenchment in the 1990s that saw the loss of half the group’s jobs. It has since refocused on its team-sports strengths and is charging into battle on the American football field, partnering with carmakers and Boeing in the process.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2015
Brand Profile: Luta Sportswear
A force for harmony: Apparel brand Luta supports the growing Fight for Peace movement, which helps children in disadvantaged areas channel their energies into sport. Its recent acquisition by Reebok will help it to grow globally.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2015
Standards in Sport: Sport
(Almost) anything goes: Golf has long had a reputation for being conservative with regard to apparel regulations. These days, if they avoid a small number of out-of-bounds clothing options, players can more or less wear what they like.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2014
Standards in Sport: Archery
Target market: The ancient art of archery, rooted in hunting and war, is a more peaceful sporting pursuit now. Even the regulations surrounding what competitors can and cannot wear are quite relaxed.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2014
Brands brush up for Brazil 2014
There is important business to be done around the 2014 FIFA World Cup. As usual, sports brands that make football a main focus, have tried to impress star players and the buying public that their most recent innovations are worth investing in
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2014
Standards in Sport: Squash
Squash makes a spectacle of itself: A sport that, while popular, used to be almost impossible to show on television or to a live audience has made significant changes to the way it presents itself, and top-level squash is now an exciting, colourful spectacle.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2014
Brand profile: Lo Swim
Functional, but feminine: Options appeared limited when collegiate swimmers Sheeva van Gemeren and Annie Babicz decided they would like to look better when training for competitions, so they set up their own swimwear brand, Lo Swim, which they now run full time.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2014
Tears, tantrums and the America’s Cup
Apparel and gear providers rose to the challenge to address safety issues and help make the world’s oldest sailing race the most spectacular in history.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2014
Standards in sport: Wrestling
The sport that was happy to say goodbye to 2013: Last year was something of an annus horribilis for the ancient and noble sport of wrestling. Its status as a core Olympic sport ended (after almost 3,000 years). Now wrestling has incorporated enough changes to continue as a non-core Olympic sport for the time being, but these changes have come at a price.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2014
Standards in sport: Speed skating
Blades of glory: Speed skating teams are focused on February 2014’s Winter Olympics in the Russian town of Sochi, with suit manufacturers hoping their latest developments will offer a less turbulent path towards the medal podium.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2013
90-year-old man beats Usain Bolt
In a youth-obsessed world, shouldn’t mainstream media and brands be paying more attention to the grey and greying generations? WSA considers the world of the Masters.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2013
Rise to the challenge: Patagonia and Yulex
On the crest of a wave: Patagonia has teamed up with Yulex to produce the first wetsuit made from guayule, which they say is a green alternative to neoprene – and they hope other brands will follow suit.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2013
Footwear technology: Football boots
The battle for the beautiful game: July 2014’s World Cup in Brazil will be a lucrative opportunity for all sports brands, and Nike and adidas have thrown down the gauntlet with their latest football boots.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2013
Brand profile: Sherpa adventure gear
Made in the mountains: Sherpa Adventure Gear makes most of its outdoor apparel in Nepal, using some of the most innovative fabrics on the market, but with traditional respect and a desire to help the communities around it underpinning its whole corporate culture.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2013
Mud run apparel, an under-served niche
Popular new events called obstacle course mud runs may be opening up new possibilities for the sports textile and apparel industry. Some big brands are already taking notice.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2013
Standards in sport: Fencing
En garde, with the right clothes and equipment: Once a key part of warfare, fencing is thankfully now just a sport. But it’s one that requires skill, speed and bravery, helped by specialist clothing and equipment.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2013
Standards In Sport: Wingsuit Flying
Icarus’s dream come true: A subcategory of skydiving and BASE-jumping, the fledging sport of wingsuit flying is admittedly a niche within a niche. In this spectacular sport, the pilot’s body, arms and legs— spread to open the fabric ram-air wings—becomes the aerofoil that enables flight.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2013
Footwear Technology: adidas
Star-studded rugby boot unveiled: Sports brand adidas believes a special stud configuration on the latest in its line of rugby boots will be of particular help to flankers and number 8 forwards.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2013
Impact protection expands its comfort zone
New shapes and constructions are helping impact protection materials provide greater comfort and freedom of movement, without compromising protection.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2013
Colombia: open for business
With the ink barely dry on a trade agreement with the US and with a similar deal with the EU about to come into force, the South American country is readying itself for a rapid increase in trade – and it sees sportswear as a sector that will drive its growth.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2013
Rise to the Challenge: Safe to Sea
Clothing group sponsors safety suit for fishermen: Like charity, corporate social responsibility can also begin at home. It did for this project, in which global group Inditex (parent company of Zara and other fashion brands) lent its support to a small, local research and development company in Galicia, north-west Spain. The result is a special safety suit that will allow Galician fishermen to work comfortably and improve the chances of survival in the event of falling overboard.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2013
Compression wear targets new functions
With the development of cold-climate endurance sports such as sky-running and ski-touring, high-tech compression and first layer apparel brands are introducing new features - knitted, woven or bonded - to their garments.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2013
Footwear Technology: Tenson
Tenson marches on: The Swedish brand has spanned the product spectrum from swimwear to skiwear and its new line of footwear showcases the innovative nature that keeps it fresh after 60 years.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2013
Standards in Sport: Cross-Country Skiing
In it for the long run: Physically one of the toughest sports, cross-country skiing is seeing a renaissance as more people seek a healthier lifestyle and are unafraid of pushing the boundaries of endurance.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2013
Brand Profile: LIJA
Putting fashion at the forefront: Canada-based LIJA has its roots in golf apparel but has found synergies in tennis and gymwear. CEO Linda Hipp explains how fusing comfort and fashion has proved a winning game plan, as the company takes a shot at the wider sportswear markets.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2013
Bringing cycling back into the light
The 1,000-page dossier that exposed the “dark period of Lance Armstrong”, during which he and his teammates used performance-enhancing drugs to claim seven Tour de France titles, shocked the world. Cycling brands, competitors and supporters are now mulling over the best way to get the sport back on track.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2013
Changing lanes
Racing cyclists know how hard it can be to work their way up from midfield to pole position: overtaking, pursuing, switching rank. These are also key features in the sports apparel market, and in particular for the outfitters of athletes and teams. French brand Le Coq Sportif hopes to surpass its rivals with a fresh strategy that includes sponsoring the Tour de France.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2012
True grit
by Simon Roberts: Away from the glitz and glamour of the high-profile commercial battles between big-name sports shoe brands, a much quieter footwear revolution has been taking place amidst the mud and rocks in the United Kingdom where fell runners run free.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2012
Standards in sport: Cycling
Wheels of innovation keep turning: The International Cycling Union makes its rules and requirements for equipment sound straightforward, but secretiveness surrounds the development of new ideas frames, forks, wheels and other components.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2012
Standards in sport: Triathlon
Three in one: This article in our series on recent changes in regulations regarding the clothing and equipment athletes can, and sometimes must, wear to compete in specific sports covers triathlon, the event that involves swimming, cycling and running and helped inspire the modern phenomenon of the Ironman competitions, which takes the idea to the extreme.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2012
Standards in sport: Swimming
FINA consigns swimsuit confusion to history: The regulations governing the construction and style of swimsuits for official competition have become much stricter since athletes broke record after record in 2008 and 2009 wearing so-called supersuits. But as clarity from the authorities has increased, the records seem to have dried up.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2012
The rise of yoga-wear
As the yoga trend shows no sign of abating, brands offering yoga apparel are going from strength to strength. But it’s the multi-functional clothing that is proving the most popular.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2012
Standards in sport: Competition ski suits
Safety versus speed: With strict guidelines set down by the International Ski Federation for the race suits worn by skiers in international competitions, textile and garment manufacturers tread a fine line between safety and speed to comply with the norms while addressing athletes’ insatiable yearning for performance-enhancing materials.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2012
Brand profile: Joma Sport
From humble beginnings to the top ten: A company founded in rural Spain in 1967 is now among the top ten global sports brands, with a growing presence in Europe, Asia and the Americas and an expanding list of elite athletes championing its products.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2012
Standards in sport: American football
In where it hurts: In this new series of features for 2012, the standards that apply to the clothing, footwear and equipment used by competitors in particular sports is examined, including recent changes in those standards and the debate surrounding them. The first article looks at American football.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2012
Focus on winners: Laird Hamilton
Water Wizard: Looking for a partner to help it launch a new stand-up paddle board as a complement to its Mar Mostro craft in the Volvo Ocean Race, sports brand Puma looked no further than Laird Hamilton, the surfer credited with riding the heaviest wave ever.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2011
…all gone in a flash
There’s more to motor sport than racing: it’s a high exposure track for the sports brands associated with the cars and bikes and goes far beyond fireproof fabrics.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2011
Part of the family
After years of commitment to African football, sports brand Puma believes that adding last year’s FIFA World Cup host nation, South Africa, to its portfolio of partners across the continent is the crowning glory.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2011
Skirting the issue
Earlier this year, the World Badminton Federation announced a new dress code for female players of the sport. The rule has since been shelved, amid criticisms from badminton players and officials, but has started an interesting debate about male and female dress codes.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2011
Focus on winners: Mara Yamauchi
Marathon Mara: Few elite athletes have had to combine competing and training with a career as a diplomat. Talent and tenacity have allowed Mara Yamauchi to concentrate solely on distance running for the past five years and she is hoping the long hours on the roads of London, Tokyo and 1,000 points in between pay off at the 2012 Olympics.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2011
Focus on Winners: Leandro Damião
Olympic goals, FIFA dreams: Internacional striker Leandro Damião has had an exciting 12 months, scoring in the final of the Copa Libertadores and making his national team debut for Brazil. He now has two important international championships in his sights.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2011
Focus on Winners: Hakeem Olajuwon
Dream in the making: Basketball superstar Hakeem (The Dream) Olajuwon has launched his own clothing brand, DR34M, incorporating his nickname and the shirt number he made famous during 18 years in the NBA, almost all of them with the Houston Rockets. He is now preparing to launch his first sports clothing collection and has a few surprises in store for the industry.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2011
Focus on Winners: Caroline Wozniacki
Denmark’s little princess: There was a time when the most famous person to come from Denmark was author Hans Christian Anderson. But now it’s time his legend made way for a newer, sportier star, whose life so far resembles that of a fairytale: tennis pro Caroline Wozniacki.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2011
Swinging in the rain
When rain halted play at the 2010 Ryder Cup and the US team’s kit leaked, they turned to the European team’s supplier of apparel, ProQuip, whose clothes kept everyone dry.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2011
Blisters and beyond
Belgian cycling apparel provider Bio-Racer was approached with a very specific problem back in 2005. Competitors taking part in the Deutschland Tour cycle race contacted the company complaining that they were suffering from blisters and burns on their buttocks. They were looking for a product that would help to reduce friction, a common problem within the sport; especially for female cyclists.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2010
Extreme edge
A diverse range of sports and outdoor brands reserve at least part of their product development budgets for clothing and equipment especially designed to function in the most extreme environments on earth.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2010
Stand up for a quality workout
The sport of surfing changed in the 1960s when boards made from synthetic materials rather than traditional wood became common. It was still a coastal craze, however, with board manu - facturers concentrating most of their efforts on the surfers’ paradises that sprang up at suitable beaches in places such as California, Australia, New Zealand, the Bay of Biscay and the Pacific Islands.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2010
Braving the elements
Dixie Dansercoer started taking part in polar expeditions around 15 years ago and is now preparing for his most ambitious expedition to date. During the trip, which is scheduled for 2011-12, Mr Dansercoer will face the fiercest elements nature has to offer and will need the most effective gear he can find if he is to stay the course. He has been working with a team of experts, including a number of textile experts, to ensure he has the lightest, most durable and most protective gear out there. Because his requirements are so unusual and specific, this is a continuous process and one in which there is still plenty of room for improvement.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2010
Water everywhere for Teva
Footwear brand Teva feels most at home with people who like to have fun in the outdoors. For its spring-summer 2011collection there is special emphasis on fun in and around water.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2010
FOCUS ON WINNERS: ERIC JACKSON
Former canoe slalom Olympian, and four-times world freestyle kayak champion Eric Jackson is now president of his own kayak manufacturing company. But he refuses to give up competing at the top of the sport just yet.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2010
Foundations for a good golf swing
Golf has been one of the last major sport categories to come under the scrutiny of footcare professionals and bio-mechanics during the explosive, specialised athletics footwear era.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2010
Colour comes back to the slopes
Brilliant clashing colours and patterns will brighten up the ski slopes next winter. The most recent ispo fair, showcasing winter 2010 sportswear and equipment, gave customers a good reason to buy. Styles and colours were fresh looking and there was plenty for all the family. On top of this, there had been lots of snow all over Europe throughout the current winter so retailers had sold their stocks of winter boots.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2010
An open and shut case
Choosing the right fastening for a piece of clothing or equipment could significantly alter the effectiveness of the item as a whole. According to the founder of fastenings brand Systemmag, Éric Sitbon, getting it right could even become a matter of life and death.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2010
Growth Sports: Mixed Martial Arts
Best of all worlds: Decades of debate about which of the martial arts is best have led to the rise of the combined combat sport of Mixed Martial Arts, in which a wide array of techniques is allowed and success depends on using the right one at the right time.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2010
A modest proposal
Rarely can a piece of sportswear be credited with changing lives, but the burqini comes close: this practical and stylish alternative to traditional swimsuits has made beaches, pools, parks, and any other combination of water and sun more accessible to religious Muslim women (and to others wishing to cover up for a variety of reasons).
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2010
FINA changes the rules
The launch of Lycra has made a tremendous difference to the world’s top swimmers and have helped competitors move more freely and are believed to have boosted performance levels. International swimming federation FINA announced last summer that a number of existing competitive suits were to be banned.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2010
Growth Sports: Golf in China
China gets the golf bug: This new series of WSA features will focus on sports that are growing in popularity around the world. The series begins with a look at the surge in popularity of golf in China. In 1983, mainland China had no golf courses. According to some estimates, the country could have as many as 2,700 by 2015, and, five years after that, the number of golfers in China waiting for tee-off times could be as many as 20 million.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2010
Focus On Winners: Chandra Crawford
Sprint champion on comeback trail: She’s the Olympic champion for the women’s cross-country sprint and became a global YouTube star thanks to her singing performance on the podium in Turin, but Chandra Crawford has spent the last year working hard to recover from injury so that she can defend her title at the next Winter Olympics, in Vancouver in February, 2010.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2009
Exception 1 to Rule 14-3 gives Bionic a helping hand
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2009
Focus On Winners: Helen Thayer
Wonder woman: Helen Thayer has spent more than 60 years tackling some of the toughest terrains on earth. At 71, her appetite for trekking, hiking, kayaking and cycling remains as keen as ever.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2009
Footwear technology: Golf
Contradictions in golf footwear. Holes in golf are what the sport is all about, especially when it comes to holes-in-one. However, holes in golf shoes on wet fairways or when fishing a wayward ball out of the lake are not normally desirable features in golf footwear. At least, that has been the case up to now.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2009
Brand profile: Rapha Cycling
Born to ride. Rapha Cycling is a London-based company established in 2003 by two passionate road cyclists, Simon Mottram and Luke Scheybeler. Its product range officially launched on July 4, 2004, at a month-long exhibition of cycling memorabilia and events called ‘Kings of Pain’.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2009
Portuguese breakthrough in football shirts
A research project at Minho University in northern Portugal has led local sports brand Lacatoni to apply the findings to the football shirts it supplies to seven of the country’s top football teams.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2009
Focus on Winners: Ivan Basso
Making winning a habit. Italian cyclist Ivan Basso is enjoying a glittering career and his passion for road racing clearly hasn’t dwindled since he first started competing on the world stage. Nicknamed Ivor the Terrible, he started entering cycling competitions at the age of seven in Cassano Magnago, Lombardy, where he grew up. He remembers his father giving him his first bike, made by Italian bicycle company Olso, and spending the whole evening just staring at it in sheer admiration.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2009
Golf apparel – on and off the course
With footwear giants Nike, adidas and Puma gaining an ever increasing percentage of the performance apparel market, it is not surprising that golf apparel trends are following more physically demanding sports such as running, tennis and soccer.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2009
Footwear in the spotlight at ispo
Nostalgia and technology were both to the fore in the new footwear designs on display at the most recent edition of the ispo international sports exhibition in Munich, as Penny Leese reports.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2009
Focus on Winners: Rebecca Adlington
Hard work and “lucky” swimsuits. The Beijing Olympic Games offered Rebecca Adlington her first ever taste of Olympic competition, although her incredible performances at the event would suggested that never have given. On August 11, 2008, Ms Adlington became the first woman to win Olympic swimming gold for Great Britain since Anita Lonsbrough did so in 1960. Having broken the Commonwealth record with a time of 4:02:24 in the heats of the 400 metres freestyle, she went on to take the gold medal in the final with a time of 4:03.22.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2009
New “cradle to grave” ski glove
Two sports textile innovators have teamed up to launch what they claim is the world’s first ever recyclable ski glove. Swany America, backed by Swany Japan, has teamed up with Japanese textile firm Teijin Fibers to produce gloves that are made from recycled polyester and can be recycled over and over again.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2009
Olympic swimmers make a big Splash
Many Olympic swimmers came together for the Splash Awards, which were established by former freestyle champion Karen Pickering to celebrate outstanding achievement.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2009
Innovations for revolutionary running
Running as both a recreational activity and as a competitive sport appears to be becoming increasingly popular. As more and more people get involved, technical textile, garment and footwear manufacturers are working hard behind the scenes to develop new innovations to boost runners’ performance and to improve their comfort levels.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2009
Focus on winners: Russell Coutts
A life on the ocean wave. In this new section of WSA, we present the views of champion sportspeople on recent textile developments for the clothes, footwear and equipment they use. In this issue, Olympic gold medallist and three-time America’s Cup winner Russell Coutts provides an insight.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2009
Profiling golf shoes
Tradition runs deep in golf where rules and dress have taken a long journey around the world from their formal origins at St. Andrews, Scotland, in the middle of the eighteenth century. It is therefore no surprise to those of us involved in the sports industry to observe that golf has been slow to change, particularly in the categories of apparel and footwear.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2008
The cradle of winter sports
Chamonix, in the shadow of Mont Blanc, western Europe’s highest peak, claims to be the cradle of winter sports. It was here, in this Alpine town of 10,000 inhabitants, that the Winter Olympics first took place in 1924. Since then, Chamonix has developed steadily as a tourist resort and now receives around five million visitors every year.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2008
In at the deep end
German protective clothing manufacturer Ballonfabrik has found a new use for Gore-Tex, in a suit that can help helicopter crews stay alive in freezing water for more than two hours.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2008
Support where it’s needed
Companies making specialist support apparel claim that too many people are still trying to treat muscle injuries with the remedies of 30 years ago. This article takes a look at newer methods.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2007
Biomimetics – alpacas go surfing
A combination of polyester and an unusual natural fibre has allowed surfwear brand Finisterre to base a new lining system for its weatherproof jackets on biomimetics.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2007
Comfort: food for thought
Fabric and fibre manufacturers are making increasingly strong connections between elasticity and comfort. Some, however, have discovered more benefits than they first imagined.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2007
Micro encapsulation: it makes scents
Micro capsule manufacturer Celessence International – a subsidiary of New York-based International Flavours and Fragrances – has been working in partnership with man-made fibres, resins and intermediates manufacturer Invista, among other companies, to produce garments with odour-combating qualities using natural ingredients. Whether technology is incorporated in fresh smelling socks, relaxing yoga wear or energising sports apparel, aroma-producing textiles are becoming a real hit with active customers.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2007
Orthopaedics takes the sports-glove market by storm
They say that if you can get a product listed on the ‘O’ list you are already on the road to marketing success. The ‘O’ list refers to the favourite things of US talk-show host Oprah Winfrey as featured in her ‘O’ Magazine. Bionic high-tech golf gloves, from Hillerich & Bradsby Co, have done better than that. Since the launch of the orthopaedically designed gloves in 2000, the brand has been favourably reviewed in more than 400 major media outlets.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2007
Outdoor industry’s snow and ice dilemma
The outdoor industry—apparel, footwear and equipment—is growing partly because more and more people are spending time in the mountains. In summer, we hike and cycle, in winter we ski, and we climb all year round.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2007
Winter success leads to summer launch
Four-times World Cup gold-medal winner Marc Girardelli hung up his skis competitively in 1996, but his passion for the sport, and for outdoor activity in general, has never left him. That’s why he has devoted the last few years to building and growing his own outdoor clothing brand specifically for children. He recently expanded it to launch, for the first time, a summer collection to add to the winter-wear range he first brought out in 2005 under the Marc Girardelli Ski Wear label.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2007
When black becomes cool fashion
textile engineering has taken a new turn. Innovators are paying more attention to the invisible, and some visible, parts of the spectrum to generate some surprising results.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2007
Auxetics expand their horizons
It is 20 years since the first synthetic auxetic polymer foam was developed but many people remain unaware of the word, let alone the unique properties that auxetic materials possess which could benefit the performance textiles sector.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2007
A fresh take on the lotus position
The mix of small and large companies at the techtextil and Avantex Innovation Awards in Frankfurt was interesting. One of the big-name winners was BASF, which was acknowledged for a new nanotechnology development. Named Mincor, it claims to produce textile surfaces that are self-cleaning.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2007
Brands ignore special qualities of stretch garments
Size matters and big brands in the sports and activewear sector need to take the matter of stretch more seriously. Dr Penelope Watkins explains why.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2007
Fighting back against nature - polyester does its bit for the planet
Although new 'natural' fabrics and apparel appear to be the 'in' thing with companies and consumers at present, polyester is fighting its corner and is even transforming itself into a sustainable product.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2007
An exercise in (UV) protection
The first glimpse of the sun has us taking to the outdoors in droves but, whilst we may look after our hearts, too few of us take the necessary precautions to protect our largest organ... the skin. This situation will not improve until UV labelling in garments becomes mandatory.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2007
Performing a balancing act
Human physiology is a natural wonder, a finely balanced system intricately designed to regulate itself. But we then reduce its efficacy by swathing ourselves in clothes. As a result, textile developers around the world are faced with the challenge of trying to recreate a natural wonder.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2007
"If he hits a home-run I'll eat my hat!"
Conserving the environment and 'going green' has become a fascination for the masses, from eating organic food through buying fair trade products to wearing eco-friendly apparel. This has 'naturally' had an impact on the textile industry as manufacturers strive to combine performance and the Earth's preservation.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2007
Only natural for cellulose and linen to score skin-friendly success
Fabric and finished garments that are kind to the wearer's skin are of growing importance in our health-conscious world, and the implications for sports and activewear are obvious.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2007
New ski boots pass the sock test
Gore-Tex is known for keeping water from penetrating material from the outside, while allowing moisture out from the inside. Hard shell ski boots are a world away from this but W.L. Gore took the decision to see if it could use its technology to improve the thermal comfort of skiers' feet.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2007
Design moves into the next dimension
Any product that can speed up this process and improve collaboration between the different stages of design and production can only be positive and 3D prototyping could be just the answer many are seeking... more should embrace it.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2007
Norway's golden girl goes back to her roots
Freestyle skiing star Kari Traa retired from competitive sport after the Turin Olympics. Now she's concentrating on making a name for herself in activewear, launching a new line of specialist underwear and outer garments, exclusively for women.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2007
Q-Angle - brought to market
Tha latest innovative entry into the footwear market caters strictly for women. Q-Angle is not an innovation in itself but a biomechanical correction for an exaggerated natural motion, but the benefits offered to women by the products designed to deal with this problem could well be far-reaching.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2007
Cosy feet and a warm winter at ispo
Despite all of the talk of global warming and the lack of snow this winter, there was plenty of exciting new winter gear at ispo in February.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2007
Power dressing women with feminine appeal
Performance brands are now dedicating an ever larger share of their ranges to women, but producing women-specific apparel is not as easy as some may believe, as the 'fairer sex' is most definitely a demanding customer to please.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2007
Sports education of a different kind
India has a passion for sport so it's not surprising that the manufacturing of sporting
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2007
Showtime: Winter wonderland
Buyers visiting this winter's trade fairs must have felt like children in a candy store as they were treated to a feast of new products and developments across the spectrum of yarns and fibres, laminates, apparel, footwear and protective gear.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2007
A new twist on wool
Whilst wool may be a natural choice thanks to its inherent performance properties, it has not always received good press due to the dreaded 'itch' that was associated with woollen garments for so long. That has now all changed thanks to numerous innovative developments using soft Merino from Australia and New Zealand.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2007
Dirgers and witches need insulation too
One traditional company, Barbour, is aware of the need to do more than just keep its customers dry and is eager to ensure its clothing matches their needs as they undertake country pursuits.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2007
Five years on and PTT starts to make its mark
There are a limited number of polymers from which man-made fibres are currently produced. Polyester, polypropylene and polyamide are the three most widely used in the world, but PTT is now beginning to make its mark.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2007
Competition heats up in the fleece market
Analysts of the US fleece market are reporting increased levels of activity and a shift in the market share within the sector. This had led to increased competition within the industry and has resulted in some interesting new products.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2007
Horsing around safely
Although the cavalry may have largely disappeared, there are huge numbers of people who ride and, as the horse can be a somewhat temperamental animal, protective helmets are essential gear.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2007
Forefoot technologies come to the fore
One of the most interesting 'trends' in both casual and athletic shoes of late has been the emergence of brands promoting the benefits to the wearer of 'forefoot technology'. We explain the science and consider who is doing what.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2007
Polypropylene fabrics for sport
Earlier this year we looked at the renewed interest in activewear using polypropylene and its technology and properties. In this article we consider why polypropylene (polyolefin) fabrics might be chosen for sportswear garments and equipment in preference to other more traditional synthetic fibres such as polyamide and polyester.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2006
Innovation for extremes
The fourth Innovation for Extremes conference was held at Lancaster University in the UK in September. The UK Outdoor Industry is a relatively small, close-knit group, with a reputation for being good with new ideas, albeit not always getting those ideas successfully onto the world stage. The conference highlighted the fact that we are on the edge of very interesting technical times with new themes and technology running through.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2006
The Iraq factor in textile technology
Warfare is often a testing ground for new technology as R&D experts continually seek solutions for new battlefield situations. The war in Iraq is no exception, especially when it comes to the apparel worn by the military. More than three years on, the Iraq conflict is providing fabric and apparel specialists with a long list of dilemmas and problems to solve and some of these technologies are now active in the consumer field as well as on the battle field.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2006
Kicking up a stink
Talk to any cyclist, runner, walker, climber, football player, or cross-country skier about the smell of his or her thermals and you will always hear the response, “It can be awful.” If you went into more detail, you’d most likely hear that some athletes consider certain brands to be ‘smellier’, while others seem to be more ‘socially acceptable’. In the last issue of WSA, we looked at different substances that are used to prevent, mask, or absorb unpleasant odours in performance fabrics. Yet where do these smells come from? How do we sense them? And how can they be measured?
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2006
Free-heeling in the back country
Winter ski sports are evolving quickly, maybe even faster than global warming can spoil all the fun. The traditional ‘big three,’ alpine, cross country and ski jumping, have diversified into a ‘category’ that now includes snowboarding, freestyle skiing, heli-skiing (involving being dumped on a remote peak by helicopter), tri-slider (a three-runner snow sled), skijoring (cross country pulled by dogs), kite-skiing (downhill pulled by a parachute) and ski-biking (steering a cycle downhill on blades instead of wheels). The latest addition to the ski-bum’s passion to negotiate all things high, cold and white is tele-skiing – also known as backcountry skiing.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2006
Hyperhidrosis — the science of sweaty feet
Hyperhidrosis—the technical term for excessive foot perspiration—may not be a particularly pleasant subject, but is one that needs to be addressed… and has been, extensively. The old saying of ‘where there’s muck there’s brass’ could be aptly linked to the idea ‘where there’s sweat there’s innovation’ — and a profit to be turned. The problem of sweaty feet has provided the basis for a plethora of material developments in socks and footwear.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2006
Stress free golf shoe hits the links but will it swing?
Every few years it seems that each sport undergoes a revolution. We’ve witnessed tennis racquet-head size increase dramatically, roller skates go from quad to in-line and downhill skis change from a straight to an hourglass shape–to say nothing of the improvements in materials that are continuous in every sport. Once again it’s golf’s turn to set the industry on its heels –and in this case literally! The new golf shoe from U-Go United Golfers offers a moveable forepart and heel that allows the shoe to shift the weight of the player during the swing–rather than the player controlling the motion by ‘natural’ transition.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2006
Blazing a trail through outdoor
The faster and more hardcore the sport, the more technical and brighter the product’, that was the clear message at the recent OutDoor Fair in Friedrichshafen, Germany, reports Penny Leese. While traditional hiking and walking have received a massive amount of support and still attract new members, thanks to the current crazes—trail walking and running—there are some truly exciting new footwear developments on the scene.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2006
Passion for cycling blends technology and nostalgia
They say those who want to start a new business should keep in a business area they know something about. Simon Mottram has been passionate about cycling for many years and he will talk eloquently about the history of racing cycling to any audience. He believes we have a generation of boomers who are nostalgic for the continental cycling of the glory days and want to emulate this when they are themselves keeping fit or cycling to work.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2006
Wonder or 'wounder' shoes on the tennis court
Tennis footwear has to deal with just about as much pounding as the ball, on a wide variety of surfaces. As a consequence modern tennis shoes incorporate a cornucopia of technologies to help avoid injury.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2006
English tradition served American style
Designing fashionable uniforms for Wimbledon proves more complex than expected.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2006
Cotton keeps growing... and improving
Cotton has been fighting polyester for fibre leadership for half a century. Perhaps the future lies in a merger.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2006
Bodymapping develops inside and out
New technologies give product developers the opportunity to build garments with variable geography. Having started with base layers this concept has now reached performance outerwear.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2006
Covering all the bases (and layers) for summer
The sports apparel business is being turned inside out, or outside in, depending on your perspective as brands known for outer layers move into base layer apparel and vece versa. Christian Eschler has focused on a three-layer system for its new collection for summer 2007.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2006
Interesting innovations in the USA
New technologies in the field of performance and protective apparel are in steady movement through the pipeline and some of these industry changing technologies were on show at the recent Techtextil North America.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2006
Keeping one's head
Cycling is a very popular sport nowadays, but falling off a bike can lead to serious head injuries which makes a helmet an essential piece of equipment.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2006
Protecting those armpits
Active people will no longer accept apparel that smells bad and the demand for clothing equipped with antibacterial effects continues to grow. Manufacturers have launched a fresh attack on the microbes that cause odour.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2006
Saddling up in comfort
Cycling shorts are a 'must have' for any cyclist, but why is it that the more professional you become the less padding you have?
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2006
Myths in yellow, pink and green
Bicycle road racing is an international sport and attracts an array of participants from professionals through serious amateurs to leisure enthusiasts. The apparel demands of these cyclists are individual, with different requirements in terms of function.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2006
Stamina specialists and curious amateurs
In a boom time for extreme sports, triathlon has itself become commercial and is now considered as a modern and innovative sport. Malin Auras reports on how a whole industry has developed around it, producing high-tech equipment from bikes to shoes and apparel.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2006
Steam engines in orange
Red stands for danger, green stands for eco-friendly, and one company would like to see orange represent breathability. Orange is the design colour of eVent's waterproof breathable membrane that is giving the established names a run for their money.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2006
Climbing high in a downhill world
Skiing has always been popular as a competitive sport, but talent alone is no longer the only deciding factor in a sport where a hundredth of a second separates the winner from the losers. As sponsor of three major ational ski teams, Spyder goes the distance to ensure its athletes have the latest technical apparel at their disposal.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2006
Amphibious landing
There are many types of 'waterproof' footwear on the market designed to keep water out and a dry and comfortable environment within, but in certain activities it is nigh on impossible to keep water out. Some manufacturers have realised this and have shifted their focus to concentrate on removing the water as quickly as possible.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2006
Downfall in thermal insulation
The outdoor industry has developed several means to protect to protect against the cold. Thermal insulation by natural or synthetic fibres is one of the most efficient of these, however, it seems that the ranking within this method is changing.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2006
A sliding victory?
The Winter Olympics may often be overshadowed by their summer equivalent in terms of media coverage, but for fabric and apparel manufacturers there are plenty of new innovations worth shouting about.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2006
Big air-artists and city-acrobats
Snowboarders don't like to conform in terms of apparel and have developed a unique identity. However, in recent years the sport has become more mainstream and the apparel and equipment on offer has had to evolve to meet the demands of new age snowboarders whether on the mountain or in the city.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2006
Seams - some time ago
Just as those involved in technical apparel once looked to sleeping bags for new ideas for coping with moisture, it appears that it is now the turn of product managers in the sleeping bag industry to turn to developments in apparel for inspiration. The result is the development of seamless and stitchless production to improve performance.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2005
Climb every mountain (well almost)
The old English saying "up hill and down dale" took on a fresh meaning when WSA contributing editor Till Gottbrath decided to participate in the gruelling Gore-Tex Transalpine Run, covering 203 kilometres and four countries.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2005
Changing the concept of changing clothes
Consumers' demands when it comes to apparel are changing. Rather than changing their outfits for different climates, they now expect the clothes themselves to alter in order to keep them comfortable and safe.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2005
'Tell them we're sold out'
Founded in 2003, Keen Footwear has seen spectacular growth thanks to an innovative product offering which has captured the imagination of a wide range of consumers. WSA looks at the story so far in an attempt to see why everyone is so keen on this new brand.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2005
Backpacking tents - an Overview
Backpacking tents are designed for those seeking a more real experience offering them the opportunity to travel spontaneously and at low cost. Therefore, although it is not a huge market, products must be able to withstand the elements off the beaten track. Founder of lightweight tent brand, lightwave, Carol McDermott offers his expert opinion on what's available.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2005
Taking functionality to the extreme
Whilst for many people 'travelling' conjures up the idea of packing a bikini and heading off to a warm beach, for certain travellers, who journey to the remotest parts of the world, their clothing can literally mean the difference between life and death.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2005
Army enters the long-distance trainer wars
The armies of the world are flexing their muscles by wearing not only combat boots but also fitness training shoes and some, such as the British Army, have even gone so far as to assist in the design and development of trainers to meet the needs of their soldiers and the approval of NATO.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2005
The difference lies in the trousers
Whilst in most outdoor activities we pay great attention to what we wear in order to be comfortable, trousers are often left out of the equation. But they are more important than we often think as they too play an important role in maintaining a comfortable body temperature.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2005
All about fit
Cycling used to be so easy. Get on the bike and pedal! Then matters became complicated as fit systems appeared. Frame size, specific wheelbase, fine tune-bar and saddle positions. Now a good retailer will check the size of your inner palm and the length of your fingers prior to letting you take a ride.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2005
Getting switched on to wearable electronics
There is a whole new generation of apparel and accessories appearing on the marketknown as wearable electronics. Developments are moving fast and a number of companies have succeeded in producing reliable merchandise merchandise to ulfil market demand.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2005
The golf glove that does it all!
It may not be legal, so make sure you are not wearing one when you play in the monthly medal or Stableford.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2005
More than a craze
Everyone is talking about Nordic sports and the less snow there is the more people seem to be enthusiastic about it. But it's not only the sports business that is interested. Health insurance agents, physiotherapists, tourist boards, travel agencies and the press just seem to have turned crazy. And so have a couple of hundred thousand people trailing along poles while they're walking their dogs.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2005
Wet and wild in PGA Country
In Hertford, Hereford and Hampshire – hurricanes hardly happen.” But, in one of golf’s hot spots – Florida, they certainly do. Perhaps last year’s quadruple hurricane assault on golfer’s paradise state inspired outerwear manufacturers to emphasise wind and waterproof outerwear at this year’s PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2005
Fun in the sun?
Skin ageing, cancers and irritations are increasing. And so is the need for protecting the human skin from harmful ultraviolet radiation. Our intrepid explorer, Till Gottbrath, considers the technologies of textile-provided UV-protection as well as test and certification standards.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2005
A walk in the Antipodes
Guided walks are by no means a new thing, but their importance in the arena of outdoor activities has grown rapidly over the last ten years. Perhaps once seen as an exercise only for ‘wimps’, the guided walk has now joined the mainstream, enjoyed by young and old, rich and poor. New Zealand offers an added outdoor advantage - merino.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2005
Adapting a product to fit the specific
News items don’t always provide a full picture: for instance, what was the thinking behind the Sensitive Wearing Concept or B3 SWC collection launched earlier this year, bringing Eurojersey and Lanificio Becagli together?
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2005
Going undercover
The old saying that it is what’s on the inside that counts has never been truer, especially in the world of functional apparel. Layering has long been recognised as vital in functional clothing with regard to thermoregulation, moisture management, and comfort and this has to begin with a high performance base layer.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2005
Light as a feather
Whilst many may choose their jacket based on the latest brand to be 'a la mode,' the correct level of insulation can avoid the loss of life for some, such as soldiers at war, rather than a loss of street credibility. There is a lot more to insulation than fashion.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2005
The heat is on... (or off)
Many people get involved in extreme activities these days, pushing their bodies to the limit whether it be as part of their professional life or just for the pure thrill of it. But although these activities all involve sweat and tears, straining muscle and sinew, it is often temperature rather than tiredness that forces people to call it a day. But this could all be about to change thanks to the latest innovation from a Scottish inventor.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2005
Feet, test and match
As the summer hastens in and thoughts focus on the European tennis circuit, the French international research and technology centre, CTC - Centre Technique Cuir Chaussure Maroquinerie, based in Lyon, outlines some of the requirements of tennis shoes, for the amateur as much as the professional.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2005
How realistic are temperature test standards?
At the 2003 Survival Conference, hosted by Leeds University in the UK, Dave Brook gave an enlightening talk on the mechanics of insulation evaluation in regard to sleeping bags, which was reported in World Sports Activewear. He was particularly concerned with the implications of the new EN13537 test standard proposed for 2005. This is now with us and at this year’s conference he returned to the subject.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2005
Reflecting on road runners and other nocturnal creatures
High visibility footwear has come a long way since fireflies were tied to a runner’s boots. Flashing lights have been relegated to fun footwear for kids but late night joggers still need to make sure that others are aware of their presence and shape.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2005
Technology and fashion: a brighter future for cyclists
New thoughts on creating luminescent clothing for cyclists using rechargeable, thin-film batteries and luminescent inks could provide a fresh retro-reflective alternative to combine fashion and functionality.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2005
Using the right molecules to cope with seams and fabrics that stretch
Garment assembly techniques continue to change: new concepts,taped seams, stretch tapes and welding as well as the demand for stretch comfort in clothing has forced thread makers to look at their ability to provide the flexibility demanded. Now there is a thread with elasticity to match the need.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2005
Seen and (hopefully) not hurt
For more than 60 years retroreflective materials have been making conditions safer for those who work in poorly-lit, hazardous situations. More recently, those who pursue outdoor sports have been wearing luminescent clothing in greater numbers as high-visibility materials technology advances.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2005
Women's winters - warmer and more stylish
More women’s products were on show at ispo than ever before -including better fitting lasts, and boots that are warmer. The day before the fair started the Volvo design conference concentrated on women’s specific design as a growing part of the sports shoe and equipment market. Penny Leese reports.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2005
Back-to-back - where fashion, leisure and sport meet
Backpacks are becoming more fashion conscious every season and this report provides pointers as to where these accessories are heading.
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2005
Moisture control
A major theme running thorough this issue, this article focuses on breathable waterproof fabrics especially for those intent on sailing. While multi-layers may still be the most popular option, at least one major name is developing the multi-layer concept into a single system.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2005
Zipping along on the crest of a wave
Sailing has been frequently used as a test-bed for new technology and products. A relatively new entrant to the high performance world of international yachting is Swiss zipper manufacturer Riri, better known for fashion than producing zips to withstand and control moisture.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2005
Waterproof barriers for footwear
Moisture control in footwear has seen tremendous improvements in recent years. It wasn’t all that long ago when keeping feet dry meant compromising comfort. New materials and construction methods have changed to ensure that the properties of staying dry and comfortable are compatible.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2005
Sea change in boatbuilding
Composite performance materials have been a vital part of the leisure boat building industry since the 1950s. The half century has seen regular improvements in techniques and applications, to the point where it is now conceivable to expect that modern hulls will be lighter, stronger and use less raw materials than their predecessors.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2004
Swimsuit technology made a splash in Athens
Spitz, Thorpe and Phelps. A one million dollar bonus. Major developments in textile engineering. And all for one purpose – to hit gold as many times as possible in the swimming pool at the Athens Olympics.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2004
Outdoor activities – a global Euro 95 million market
A brief indication of the claimed value of outdoor activities and their growing significance as part of the expanding recreational market. Based on recent research we identify the four segments that make up this growing outdoor market.
WSA - Issue6 - Nov/Dec 2004
What about that comfort feeling?
When designers skimp on the materials used at the interface between foot and shoe, that’s when the trouble begin. We examine a wide range of modern footwear for its comfort values – and it’s not all a question of linings and EVA.
WSA - Issue5 - Sept/Oct 2004
Brenig – fitting the outdoors
A direct sales company marketing its own production; almost an anachronism in 2004! Yet this small unit has managed to secure a secure place in posterity by equipping Polar explorers and Round-the-World yachtsmen with clothing that was deemed too successful by one user.
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2004
From the Southern Ocean to the Solent
There can be few environments more testing than long-distance sailing. For that reason the market sector has occasionally been considered to be ultra-conservative in both design and the apparent reluctance to use high performance textiles. But attitudes are changing and sailing’s high profile in the last decades of the 20th century has been instrumental in effecting a sea-change in clothing design
WSA - Issue4 - Jul/Aug 2004
Packer brings K-leather to life and to sports
It might be a symbol of Australia, but the essential culling the kangaroo generates an important raw material for tanners. One tanning company has taken kangaroo skin and applied high technology to produce a variety of benefits
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2004
Masterly performance
Until recently golfing knitwear has tended to epitomise the perception of hide-bound traditionalists operating within a closed shop mentality – and that was only the manufacturers. A visit to the 2004 PGA show proved otherwise. Performance yarns and fleece knits have extended the available options well beyond intarsia and plain green
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2004
Olympic green
With the Athens Olympics almost upon us, now is a good time to take a look at what’s afoot – or at least under it. Synthetic grass or composite prefabrications, what is the technology involved in producing the perfect sports surfaces for the world’s athletes.
WSA - Issue3 - May/Jun 2004
A–hunting we will go.. for boots
An assessment of the most recent developments in footwear suitable for hunting
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2004
Applied Technology: The flying W
Carbon fibre, titanium, graphite and polymer-based adhesives subjected to the disciplines of Computer Aided Design at Wilson tennis racquets
WSA - Issue2 - Mar/Apr 2004
A glove affair
A golfer and his or her glove should never be parted – and together they should grip, even when wet. Technical advancements in the development of cabretta leathers and in glove production methods have given the player every possible advantage – but they can’t correct a bad swing.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2004
Completely waterproof
Angling – the sport that quietly dominates in numerical terms and generates substantial turnover for manufacturers and retailers. Waders and wading footwear generate fierce loyalties among anglers, but they will not tolerate second-best in either quality or performance. When they ask for ‘dry feet’ they mean ‘dry feet.’
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2004
Ski & She
A two-part feature that firstly traces the development of women’s clothing on the ski slopes of Europe from the 1890s through to the 1940s. The effect of a world war is considered,as is the introduction of performance textiles and an increasing awareness of the power of femininity. Part II brings us right up to date with the fashions available for the 2004 season, including technical developments that Miss 1890 would never have considered possible.
WSA - Issue1 - Jan/Feb 2004
Cool and lighter
ISPO Summer 2003 revealed a plethora of styles and innovations in performance footwear. Everything from golf to lifestyle; from athletics to skating comes under the author’s analysis of trends and specifications. Weights, colours and materials are examined in detail.
WSA - Issue3 - Autumn 2003
Armoured advance on the ski slopes
With the not-so-young and the very young spending more and more time indulging in snow sports, the perceived necessity for impact protection is likely to affect many an insurance assessment. Technology borrowed from the motorcycle market could save the day and bring down the premiums at the same time. With an upcoming Rugby World Cup in mind, the writer also reports on a new entry into player protection.
WSA - Issue3 - Autumn 2003
Everest: The 50th Anniversary feature
From the long list of suppliers that contributed to Hilary and Tenzing’s success, how many are still out there? Not as many as might be supposed, although a few brand names continue with a 21st century spin.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2003
Blurring the line between function and fashion
As city life relaxes the social mores, the rules for footwear are far less rigidly applied than they were 40 years ago. Trail boots are more or less acceptable anywhere and the athletic shoe in all its forms and guises has become ubiquitous. The requirements of fashionistas are beginning to dictate what appears on the shelves of the specialist shoe stores. The technology is beginning to be hidden by the baubles and bows.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2003
Everest: The 50th Anniversary feature
High altitude footwear designed and developed by SATRA merits the reader’s contemporary comparison.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2003
Some down, but many more to go
The PGA show in Orlando is a big affair where the fortunes are not swayed by a few “no-shows”. We examine the overall state of the golf equipment market as exhibited and attempt to comment objectively on technical developments in hardware, clothing and footwear.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2003
It’s in the bag
Possibly the definitive work dealing with golf bags. We review crowded market sector by type and application, naming the parts and explaining the claims that are made. Carried by caddy or cart; wheeled or shoulder-borne; spinless or with an exo-skeletal structure – these vital components of the game cater for the super-athletic and the more sedentary.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2003
Peacock pedallers
Professional cycling with its thrills and its spills is possibly one of the toughest sports in which to participate. The kit worn by modern competitors is some of the most technical available – and some of the brightest. Fabric versatility is responsible for the change from breeches and caps to Lycra and wind tunnels. Are you in line for aerodynamic ergonomics. One company uses the professionals as pedalling test beds and photographic models – all in the best possible taste and with the purest of motives.
WSA - Issue1 - Spring 2003
…..directly to the South Col
If one accepts the adage that ‘1 pound on the feet is 5 pounds on the back’ then there must be a serious question mark over the practice of wearing double-layered boots for high altitude mountaineering. On the other hand, not to do so should be termed as seriously foolish. Our survey looks at the latest products on the market, the technology behind their development, and the curious way in which leather gave way to plastic but the latest technology is a mixture of the two.
WSA - Issue1 - Spring 2003
Up the creek with the right apparel
For such a relatively small market sector, the apparel products demanded by canoeists and kayakers command a surprisingly high level of technical input. Our investigation looks at the work of the supplying companies, numbering just a dozen or so worldwide, and considers the merits of fit and function as they frequently oppose each other.
WSA - Issue1 - Spring 2003
Totally spaced out
Conferences come and go, often with little to justify the expense and opportunity cost of the time involved in attendance. But a small gathering in England in April 2002 received a presentation of significance. Assembling performance textiles into an order that maximises their potential is a serious matter, and few would dare to challenge accepted thinking. Andrew Spink did so by adding another factor to an established equation – and improving performance overall.
WSA - Issue1 - Spring 2003
Power on the pedals
Eurobike 2002 in Freidrichshafen presented the ideal opportunity to discuss the high-tech world of specialist shoe production – for ‘bikers’. The development of clipless pedals and the sole designs that engage with them has opened a new technology based on that of quick-release ski bindings.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2002
Applied Technology: flexible friends – pole to pole
Historically tent poles were simple technology, but now it looks as though we are moving towards an era of dual-purpose poles.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2002
Huntin’, shootin’ and watchin’
The National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation has been conducted about every five years since 1955. It provides information on the number of participants in fishing, hunting, and wildlife involvement throughout the USA, and the amount of time and money spent on these activities. WSA reviews some of the highlights from the 2001 edition.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2002
Kit for the Kiwi challenge
In Grand Prix sailing, the America’s Cup racing is as different from round-the-world ocean racing as Formula One is from rallying in the world of motorsport. It follows that, just like the boats and equipment used by the competing teams, their clothing is purpose-designed too. In the run-up to the 2003 competition for the ‘Auld Mug’ WSA looks at how some of the challengers are kitted out.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2002
To insulate or encapsulate? Is that the question?
Insulated footwear, using the latest in synthetic fibres, has a vital part to play in solving the problems inherent in low temperature operations. Phase change materials, such as Outlast and ComforTemp, offer another set of solutions. And there are always the extra possibilities in bringing the two technologies together. Hot foot from the test bed, we examine the options available to specialist footwear manufacturers. Did they suffer with cold feet in Elsinore?
WSA - Issue3 - Autumn 2002
From the grass roots up
This article reviews the state of play of golf shoes – to stick with hard or soft shoes. The professionals have proven more traditional than the amateurs who appear happy to play with soft cleats. It makes golf one of the few sports where trends have not filtered down from the best players.
WSA - Issue3 - Autumn 2002
Golf – alive and well in Florida
The traditionalist may well disapprove, but the fact remains that technology is impacting on the ancient game of golf as never before. This article takes a swing at some of the latest innovations seen at the PGA golf show in Florida.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2002
Once it was keep your head down – now it’s keep your head covered
Golfing headwear shades, protects and hides. Thirty separate operations go into the manufacture of a quality baseball-styled cap – and it’s no longer strictly necessary to throw it on the ground, dip it into boiling water or give it to the dog for a couple of hours to achieve that well-worn and crumpled look. Multi-fit, built in ball markers, high –tech sweatbands and crystal-based insert all target the golfer
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2002
Rubber for river rafting
When it comes to satisfying the conflicting performance requirement of whitewater sports, no other material lends itself better to footwear than good old fashioned rubber. Grippy in both wet and dry conditions, hardwearing and quick to dry, rubber continues to deliver the best all-round solution for the spectacular watersport as exemplified by the front cover of this issue. The history of rubber-based river rafting footwear is reviewed, from the earliest ‘waterdogs’ to the latest feature-packed ‘spider rubber’-based water shoes. A snapshot of the latest developments taking place in lining and upper materials technology is also provided.
WSA - Issue1 - Spring 2002
Moving seams
Originally developed by the pantyhose industry, seamless technology is making inroads into sports textiles in the pursuit of comfort and speed. A look at the possibilities being opened up by seamless knitting machines indicates the advantages and limitations of the technology. Investigating the changing relationship between seamless production and traditional knitting techniques, the conclusion is that the two are complimentary.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2001
…and we shall have snow
From web-enabled ‘s-key’ gloves to snowboarding gloves, when it comes to technical sophistication the world’s winter sports glove manufacturers seemingly know no bounds. The article reviews designs and concepts entering the marketplace and highlights how internet and fabric technologies are being interwoven to enhance levels of sporting performance for the wearer. The consumer, retailer and manufacturer will all need to be educated on the range of benefits offered by the new technology if its potential is to be realised in the market.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2001
Driven to distraction
While the effects of technological developments of golf clubs and balls were being debated in Munich in October, manufacturers at Golf Europe 2001 were displaying their latest products to the golfing world.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2001
Skeleton, the ultimate bone shaker
Even on the risk-laden world of winter sports, the skeleton bobsled event is considered extreme. Based around a minimalist sled, no more than 20 cm off the ice, the event will make a welcome return to the 2002 Winter Olympics programme in Salt Lake City after a fifty year break. A look at the main aspects of this most esoteric of winter sports highlights the first foray by a major b rand into the market with its sport-specific shoe and racing suit.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2001
Row for it
For a sport currently enjoying a high profile, a study of rowing that provides as many questions as answers. The performance textiles are readily available but appear to be shunned in one particular aspect. The feature discusses this and other issues whilst providing an overview of the specific clothing and technologies involved.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2001
Cover up
Thanks to advance in shell fabric technology sleeping bags have come a long way in the last two decades – to the extent that some models are now claimed to offer similar levels of weather protection as does a tent. This report deals with the latest innovations in this highly competitive outdoor market and canvasses thoughts of fabric suppliers and bag brand holders on levels of usage and trends.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2001
You want a pocket for your what?
The article examines the historical precedents and finds value in long-term development as well as short-term opportunism. It surveys accessories on offer to rucksack users and assesses their value to travellers and the industry.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2001
Sun, sand and sleek
An expose of the exposed. A revealing look at the currency of the aquawear market and the textiles that support it.
WSA - Issue3 - Autumn 2001
“New balls, please”
How do they put the felt on tennis balls? To find the answer, WSA took a trip to Ireland.
WSA - Issue3 - Autumn 2001
Even Hells Angels have Soles
Mel Cheskin takes a look at the motor cyclists’ footwear market and its need for differentiation.
WSA - Issue3 - Autumn 2001
Sail Ho!
Textile technology almost allows sailors to rule the seas.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2001
Gee-Whizz – why not whack a duck!
Gadgets, gizmos and assistance with that iffy swing. More companies than ever target the golf market.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2001
Looking good on a bicycle made for one or two…
One of the world’s largest cycle races highlights the demand for performance clothing and equipment around the world.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2001
The handicap of high expectation
The tiger Woods Phenomenon may be boosting TV ratings but the game needs more new players to maintain the double digit industry growth of the 1990s.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2001
Hot comfort
Motor sport spectators may only be there for the morbid possibilities in crash, but the race marshal’s equipment helps to keep all the thrills on the right track.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2001
If the shoe fits
A New Hampshire company practices practical testing and produces quantified data just like the laboratory.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2001
The loneliness of the long track skater
Unadulterated speed driven by energy, skill and determination. Fast clothing, even faster feet and the safety factors involved.
WSA - Issue1 - Spring 2001
Walking on water
A current survey of footwear for those who aren’t web-footed.
WSA - Issue1 - Spring 2001
Safe in your own canoe
Does better safety equipment give an overriding sense of complacency? Not if you take notice of the governing bodies in the canoeing business.
WSA - Issue1 - Spring 2001
Aces on court
If you think that modern tennis is just a case of serve and cash – then take a look at the footnotes.
WSA - Issue1 - Spring 2001
A safe pair of hands
The essential use of protective gloves for a number of sporting activities
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2000
Clothes Horses?
Equine fashion brings high performance textiles to the Paddock.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2000
Swanky bags
Sleeping bag development has been concentrated on fillings and space.
WSA - Issue4 - Winter 2000
“That stuff doesn’t change much”
Tent engineering highlights some surprising aspects of an apparently mundane subject.
WSA - Issue3 - Autumn 2000
Fairway fashion
As golf courses proliferate in the USA, textile technologies and fashion join forces to provide a cross-over between sport and leisure.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2000
Traditional “links” to the grass
The latest golf footwear technology encourages happy feet
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2000
Wind beneath my wings
Wind - the cheapest motive power available and the part played by performance textiles in harnessing it for sport and leisure.
WSA - Issue2 - Summer 2000
Going for the pot
All at sea with wool and Gore-Tex – and an upset for the USA
WSA - Issue1 - Spring 2000
Focus on Winter 2001
Snowsport, winter wear and safety trends from Munich.
WSA - Issue1 - Spring 2000

Chemours D

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