The US Olympic team is well known for doing what it can with clothing and equipment to give its competitors an edge. This year we’ll be seeing some extra fancy suits on the speed skaters competing in Sochi. Under Armour, in collaboration with Lockheed Martin have created this high-tech marvel.
The Mach 39 suit uses several high-tech features with five different types of fabric designed to give the skater an edge. For starters, the area between the skater’s thighs and under their arms is made from a special super-slick fabric, so friction is minimized and no extra energy is wasted. Then Under Armor added dimples similar to what you find on a golf ball to reduce wind resistance around the head and arms.
I’m waiting to see if this won’t be another example of suits that are banned in future competitions because they offer too much of an edge. Like the Shark Suits were in swimming a few years back. Reading about the suit it doesn’t sound like they give so much of an advantage that they would be banned, but we’ll just have to wait and see.
I’ll wait a while for the price to drop before I go buy my own suit. Maybe by then I’ll have also learned to skate for more that 25 feet without eating it.
Hit the jump for a close up.