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Creating waves with new swimsuit technology

19 May 2016

Arena’s Powerskin Carbon racing suit range has been expanded with the all new Powerskin Carbon-Ultra, taking swimsuit technology to another level.

Arena launch new Powerskin Carbon-Ultra ahead of the swimming at the Aquatics Championships

The Powerskin Carbon-Ultra incorporates a new level of support and movement management with an internal Ultra-link system designed to optimise the athlete’s physiology. It does this by connecting key muscle groups and isolating upper and lower body movements, increasing the swimmers efficiency and improving their body position in the water. By targeting specific compression zones, the suit further supports and streamlines the body to reduce turbulence and drag.

The Ultra-link system is featured in the inner layer of the suit and its benefits are delivered by three essential features:

1. The Infinity Loop- this helps keeps the body position streamlined and is good for the distribution of tension. The design is based on a deep knowledge of the key muscle chains.

2. The X-Pivot- this features intelligent compression and anatomical support without limiting freedom of movement. Its design draws on the body mechanics to isolate movement in the upper and lower body. Strategically placed tapes create a brace which keeps the lower body and core muscles firm and supported while still allowing the upper body to rotate freely. 

3. Ultra-Compression Panels- these are designed to work with the external Ultra-cage to deliver targeted areas additional compression. 

The suit’s outer shell integrates an Ultra-cage with three times more carbon, enhancing compression without compromising reach and freedom of movement. The fabric is woven more tightly which means it can better conform to the individual athlete’s body shape. The anisotropic stretch of the fabric allows differential stretch in the horizontal and vertical directions.

Throughout the design and construction, the suit underwent several rounds of testing from European and US swimmers. The process also involved laboratory testing, particularly of the materials and their strength. These tests consisted of drop water tests, to determine the fabrics behaviour in the water and, by using a sleeve of the material and a keel, the fabric was passed through water to determine its performance when moving through the water.

Innovia Technology worked alongside Arena in the R&D department, integrating the best thinking in technology, design, consumer insight and manufacturing to help create new and exciting concepts that can be brought to market efficiently. 

For more information and to hear from professional swimmers who wear the suit, click here.

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