Under Armour is hoping history doesn’t repeat itself.
Four years after its uniforms for the U.S. speed skating team at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi were switched mid-Games because an alleged design flaw caused the team to slow down, the Baltimore-based sports brand is back with a new design.
For the Pyeongchang Games, Under Armour collaborated for four years with the U.S. Speedskating Federation not only on new uniforms but also on a new approach to training that included non-ice cycling camps and tai chi along with traditional weight room sessions.
In addition, the company has created a new Olympic speed skin that it says will maximize comfort, mobility and speed. Fabrics and concepts were tested for hundreds of hours and the final result is the H1, an aerodynamic fabric that has been integrated into the arms and legs of the long track speed skating skins.
The uniforms will feature an asymmetrical design that services the sport’s unique movement of always turning left. In addition, 3-D body-scanning was used to custom fit each athlete.
As a result, the team hopes that it can focus on its performance rather than its apparel when the Games begin next month.