Sunday, April 10, 2011

2XU: COMPRESSION: Press Preview Fall 2011

Words/Images Judith Ecochard

It’s really rare…okay, never---that we ever ever attend a NYC media event for apparel- and feel like the pudgy slug in the room.

This, despite summiting acclaimed peaks, completing triathlons, paddling swift Class 4/5ers…and daily hauling around town on foot--an endurance ordeal too. Really.

So while our we were jazzed to preview the 2011 2XU COMPRESSION “HUMAN PERFORMANCE MULTIPLIED"---it’s when we got there and sat up front across from the brand ambassadors…

That the benefits of livin’ the MO/mantra were super obvious. Hence the wave of wimp-ness on our part.

This extremely fit ensemble--- who meaningfully earn their cash from athletic achievements- personify how 2XUs specifically engineered products - for competition/active use (PERFORM), exercise/recovery (XFORM), and recovery (REFRESH)--- and also made for specific athletic activities (run, tri, swim, bike---plus)-meaningfully aid in that extra edge-in challenging physical pursuits.

We had already seen the light in a way- at an Outdoor Retailer Tradeshow---where swing-bys the always, crowded 2XU exhibit, got us curious. We eventually stopped in--- and got educated on the benefits of compression wear, and importantly, why other brands and medical grade compression-do not impart the same benefits for athletes. (Review).

Since then the 2XU brand and the biz have grown…



First off, this company takes fabrics seriously, and uses both proprietary blends -incorporating the most cutting edge technical fabrics out there---including gee whiz ones like the new 250.70 Denier/CK –a high gauge performance fabric engineered to deliver the high compression for targeted areas via compression leggings, arm and calf sleeves.

Other tech textiles include the exclusive to 2XU-the Super Micro Denier (SMD) fabrics (Cool Mesh, Meshlite, Thermo, Silver, 3D Mesh) with moisture management, flexibility/unrestricted movement, antibacterial and UV protection properties---and “one way capillary action” for enhanced blood flow.

New for 2011 in some Compression and Endurance Tri apparel is- ICE X (Schoeller) that actually blocks UV rays and draws heat away from the body to lower skin temps by up to 5.4•F

and---70D Kinetic Speed Compression Fabric-that uses Swiss air turbulent technology for improved aerodynamics, plus 2XU's 70D Compression fabric and LYCRA®.

Second off, the Melbourne based in-house engineers design and produce 2XU’s advanced garments and tests them rigorously---with many external development and research partners/alliances including the Australian Institute of Sport, Rowing New Zealand  --- and we love this, Cricket Tasmania. (The List).

Feedback is key, and 2XU seems to listen and be inspired--- going to the next level…including even more TBD garments- targeted for specific sports. (We figure one less excuse for that golf handicap---serendipitously now- 2XU is corporate supplier for The First Tee).

The presentation itself, had the athletes convey their enthusiasm for 2XU Compression Wear…and how they experienced real differences, immediately- in their recovery/ competitive performances once 2XU apparel was part of their everyday uniform on and off the court, sort of speak.

The athletes… Jets kicker/punter Steve Weatherford who had maybe 1% body fat -so we figured he had played soccer too---swore by the Recovery Leggings-and commented how his entire team wears the brand. Weatherford didn’t know if “Broadway Joe” Namath---the 70’s superstar quarterback for Big Green-used to wear support hose (ladies?) underneath his uniform (we asked---figuring it’s a team tradition). “…though Namath was famous for a lot of things…” he noted.

Jenny Kalmbach-a standup paddler----reminded us of gals we meet while hiking/boarding the Rockies---like the mom who had played varsity Rugby at the University of Utah---cause they were good enough to make the men’s team, thereby making it a co-ed franchise…that kind.
She wears the 2XU Compression tights and tops for training and racing----and the compression socks for traveling. She also reassured up that the 50+ UV protection was the real deal---not a treatment that washes out.

Josh Courage a CrossFit leading light---also has quite the athletic resumé including pro baseball, marathons, tris, and cycling races. He was actually wearing the Elite Compression Tights---which we were lucky enough to get the female equivalent of. And yes, we could see why he wore them to train, compete, recovery and at night too.

All mentioned how comfortable every single item was to wear---as well as supportive.

And in reality, plenty of non-professionals including half the Los Angelinos we know-wear comfy athletic wear most of the time anyway---with the Summer 2011 2XU women’s fitness apparel particularly suited for 24/7.

Since the fashion/beauty types we usually associate with as part of our Big Apple life are surprised when we don’t show up after or before tri training…it’s rare that we don’t have at minimum, the 2XU Compression Socks on.

AND absolutely--- our calves def benefit---and healing wise- those vibrating, twitching muscles (“muscle oscillations”) after killer Bricks (bike/run)---or tough hikes, are tamed.

High Performane Jacket

 FYI:  Other clingy sportswear brands---that boast moisture management, odor control, UV protection-yada yada yada---may have splashier adverts…but IMHO- everyone looks even hotter in those fitted 2XU garments---and lbs less--- STYLE ALERT to all those Lululemon addicts at gyms across the planet. 
PROJECT X TRISUIT-we want this for our next 70.3