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New developments in performance swimwear
published in Issue 30, 3rd Quarter 2009
Developments in swimwear technology have revolutionised swimming and have created massive interest in what has traditionally been a low-tech sport.
Manufacturers of performance swimwear have been involved in a technological race to produce the world’s fastest swimsuit. This race—commonly referred to as “the bodysuit wars”—culminated in early 2009 with the development of swimsuits constructed not from a textile but from 100% polyurethane.
The introduction of this new generation of performance swimwear coincided with a sharp improvement in swimming times which has fuelled a debate about whether high-tech suits provide their wearers with an unfair advantage. As a result of the controversy, polyurethane suits will be banned from competitive swimming with effect from January 1, 2010. From that date, competitive swimmers will be required to wear textile suits, and these must not extend further than the knee.
Following the ban on full length non-textile suits, performance swimwear manufacturers now have less leeway in their choice of design and materials. Consequently, they will face a major challenge in their quest to develop fast and innovative new swimsuits.
Table of Contents
New developments in performance swimwear
Biomechanics of competitive swimming
History of swimwear
Fabrics used for swimwear and fabric properties
Characteristics of performance swimwear
Performance swimwear regulations
Size and characteristics of the performance swimwear market
Four times a year, Performance Apparel Markets provides an overview of the sector for performance apparel and corporatewear. It provides market data and analysis of new and established markets for performance fibres, fabrics and clothing, and is essential reading for executives who are working in (or supplying) this fast growing sector. It is also an invaluable one-stop-shop where people who are not involved in the industry on a day-to-day basis can find an authoritative source of relevant information which helps them to quickly gain an understanding of the key issues facing the companies in this sector.
Reports in Performance Apparel Markets include:
reports on major developments in the global performance apparel market, focusing on new products and technologies, innovative fibres and key players;
detailed, independently-researched reports on one of the following topics: antimicrobial fibres and fabrics, anti-static technology, flame resistant fibres and fabrics, high strength fibres and fabrics, high visibility apparel, microencapsulation, moisture management fabrics, performance swimwear, seamless knitting and stitch-free seaming technologies, smart and interactive textiles, stain protective apparel, stretch fibres and fabrics, surfwear and surf-inspired clothing, temperature regulation, UV protective fibres and fabrics, and waterproof breathable fabrics;
company profiles, outlining the business, product, market and manufacturing strategies employed by key players in the performance apparel industry; and
business news and developments affecting global performance apparel markets, majoring on innovations, mergers and acquisitions, investments, joint ventures, and financial performances.
Performance apparel represents one of the fastest growing sectors of the international textile and clothing industry – and market growth is being fuelled by the emergence of new fibres, new fabrics and innovative process technologies. The market is also being boosted by changes in consumer lifestyles. People are living longer and spending more time on leisure activities. New high-tech fabrics are being developed for a wide range of active sports such as aerobics, athletics, ballooning, cycling, hiking, mountaineering, parachuting, sailing, skiing, snowboarding, swimming, and windsurfing.
Exciting innovations are emerging in smart textiles and nanotechnology – and the sector’s growth prospects are helped by the trend in increasing demand for performance features in mainstream fashion.
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