Posts Tagged ‘Team GB’

Sport, Sports, Sportswear

LONDON 2012: Talking Adidas cycling sportswear with Victoria Pendleton of Team GB

By Gerald Lynch on August 2nd, 2012

Team GB have already picked up one London 2012 cycling gold medal thanks to Bradley Wiggins’ dominating performance in the time trials yesterday. This week sees the doors to the velodrome open, where Team GB’s Victoria Pendleton is well placed to grab another top podium place. We caught up with her last week to discuss the new sportswear innovations from Adidas that are driving here and the rest of the Great Britain cycling team forward.

When it comes to Great Britain’s gold medal chances at the London 2012 Olympic Games, Victoria Pendleton is a name that springs straight to mind. At the peak of her career, she’s cycling’s golden girl. Winning gold at the Beijing Olympics and coming off the back of great successes at the World Championships, her rivalry with fellow cycling sprinter Anna Meares of Australia promises to deliver some of the most nail-biting action of the games.

Looking for every advantage they can get out on the velodrome, Pendleton and the rest of the Team GB cycling team (including Chris Hoy, Laura Trott and Geraint Thomas) will be using a unique training aid – Adidas “Adipower” trousers.

Dubbed the “Hotpants”, the custom-fitted trousers are battery powered and are designed to be worn after an athlete’s warm-up. Heated filaments in the trousers direct heat to the core muscle groups in the legs, maintaining an ideal 38C temperature, meaning that Team GB’s legs should be limber before each event even if they’ve had a lengthy wait between their warm up session and the competitive races. There are even quick-release zips, letting the athletes get the Adipower kit on and off in seconds.
victoria-pendleton.jpg“We’ve had them for a couple of months now,” Pendleton explained to Tech Digest.

“They’re really easy to use and heat up almost instantaneously; you can really feel the temperature going up on your quads and hamstrings. For me as a sprinter, I have lots and lots of short events that are spread out over a day so it’s essential my muscles maintain their temperature after warm up.

“In cycling we talk about ‘marginal gains’ all the time; we’re training to the best of our abilities and have so many experts working with us. You want to make sure every detail is taken care of, and that we have every advantage possible. These trousers are another example of how Team GB is achieving that.”

Designed over the course of four years with input from Team GB and other top cyclists from across the globe, Adidas’s innovation spokesperson Udo Mueller stated that the Adipower trousers were exploring an area where few other sportswear manufacturers were venturing:

“There is a clear lack of garments being made where we do nothing illegal to push athletes to do their best. There’s a marginal gain to be made by using these ‘hotpants’ and we have to capitalise upon it. We did the same within the new swimming regulations and created a swimsuit lighter and faster than ever before. These new innovations should encourage and inspire other countries in the long haul to take advantage of that.”
chris-hoy-hot-pants.jpgAnd what of Pendleton’s chances against Meares? Will the “hotpants” give her the edge she needs to grab the gold?

“Anna and I are both competitive, determined, tenacious individuals. People who know us say we’re quite similar in character, and I’d expect that from someone of the same sport as me.

“I have huge respect for Anna Meares and I know she has a lot for me too. We’re just both hugely competitive individuals, and our form has converged at the same time.

“When it’s all over we’ll probably have a sit down and have a good laugh over all the hoohah we’ve read in press about each other over the last ten years!”

But the time for friendship comes later. For the rest of these games at least, we hope Pendleton remains fired up by the rivalry that could lead to one of Great Britain’s key gold medal wins.



Gallery, Health & Fitness, News, Sportswear

London 2012: Stella McCartney’s Team GB kit for Adidas revealed

By Gerald Lynch on March 23rd, 2012

Team GB London 2012 kit

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Picture 1 of 13

British Gymnast Louis Smith (top) poses on a pommel horse as Adidas unveil the British Team Kit designed by Stella McCartney during a photocall at the Tower of London, London.

Forget going for gold. Team GB will be decked out in indigo as they take to the track and field for the London 2012 Olympic games.

Inspired by the Union Jack flag, the Olympic and Paralympic sportswear will feature predominately blue hues paired with red footwear as they compete across the summer.

Designed by Beatle offspring Stella McCartney in partnership with sponsors Adidas, over 900 British athletes will be kitted out with a total of approximately 175,000 items of clothing from the range during the games.

“All eyes will be on the British athletes when they take the stage at the Games,” said Adidas UK Marketing Director Nick Craggs.

“We wanted to ensure that they would be the best equipped team through a combination of leading technologies including PowerWEB and Climacool and a unified and striking team identity.”

So what’s the rough verdict on the kit? While the public seem a little sceptical on the actual “Britishness” of the clothing, it’s garnered unanimous praise from the athletes themselves.

“It is very blue and that is nice and subtle but, at the same time, it does what it needs to do,” BMX cyclist Shanaze Reade told BBC Sport.

“You can often blend in with French wearing red, white and blue but this is completely on its own and makes us feel very British. As females it is all about what it looks like and if you feel good it makes us perform even better.”

110 metre hurdler Will Sharman was equally chuffed, noting that the kit was functional as well as fashionable:

“It needs to be lightweight, which it is, it needs to be aerodynamic and it is. There is no flapping about so, from a performance perspective, it’s exactly what we were looking for. The colours are different but it’s definitely British. I get excited putting it on. It has the Olympic rings on and that gives you pride.”

So what do you think? Will you be sprinting down to your local sportswear dealer to get a piece of McCartney’s Olympic designs, or has one of the UK’s leading fashion designers missed out on a medal this year? Let us know what you think in the comments section below!

IMAGES: Press Association




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