When you’re watching you’re favourite sports player in their brightly coloured attire, you may not realise the technology and research that has gone into the clothing that they wear. Clothing may seem simple and straightforward, but the truth is that sportswear has come a long way since modern sports first became competitive on a professional level.
One hundred years ago, sports players would wear hand-knitted, cotton clothing that often proved to be extremely uncomfortable and didn’t allow much room to move. A hundred years later, however, and researchers are looking into types of sports fabrics that were once nothing more than science fiction. In today’s world, we can find fabrics that not only improve the overall performance of sports players, but can even monitor their vitals and allow for feedback to a computer, so they can keep track on just how their body is dealing with the sport they are playing.
Circuitry has come a long way since it was first developed half a century ago, and its refinement in recent years has meant that circuits are now smaller and thinner than ever. All circuitry relies on conductivity of electricity, and as humans have a natural amount of electrical charge, certain circuits can be activated. This technology is being woven into sportswear fabrics, allowing players to wear clothing that can actively monitor their body as they play, and then can be plugged into a computer at a later stage.
It gives the wearer an understanding of how their body performs under stress, including the kind of temperatures it reaches. Temperature is a big factor in performance, and learning how to effectively manage it can help improve their overall game. So, whether you are sitting at home enjoying horse betting or on the field, you can always keep up to date with how your body is coping.
Temperature Control Fabrics
Another line of fabrics that are being designed at the moment are uniquely engineered to cool down a player’s body automatically. The fabric uses sweat as a catalyst, meaning that the more you swear, the cooler the fabric will become, allowing the body to maintain an optimum temperature at all times no matter how much they push themselves. The fabric is made up of special polymer rings that contain chemicals that react to moisture, such as human swear.
As the sweat reaches these rings, they begin releasing cooling agents with immediately start cooling the wearer down. The reaction is relative to the amount of sweat you produce, giving players a great way to constantly stay cool without having to take breaks every so often.
On the other end of the spectrum, we have fabrics that, instead of keeping the body cool, use reflective technologies to keep the body warm. These work by making use of tiny reflectors that line the fabric, which insulate and reflect heat back on to the body. Heat is not allowed to escape, and is instead keep within the closed system using this fabric. This is especially useful for those that enjoy snow-related sports, such as skiing, snowboarding, and anyone that wants to keep warm in cold weather.
With all these innovations being developed, and more on the horizon, soon players will be able to wear clothing that will not only increase their performance on the field, but also provide better overall comfort.