Summer Tennis Apparel
The warm weather has arrived and tennis lovers are ready to take back the courts! However, it's important for players to remember that they need to take some precautions because of the summer sun and warm temperatures. Tennis Express offers tennis apparel designed to help you get the most of your time on the courts.
In the summer, energetic activities such as tennis, can pose special challenges for athletes. When you exercise the temperature of your skin rises and perspiration may increase up to 500%. Heat exhaustion and heat strokes occur at high temperatures and high humidity, when the body can't cool itself down sufficiently enough through evaporation of sweat. Managing your body's temperature and comfort levels will help to keep you healthy, increase your performance on the court and speed your recovery after your match is over. When you sweat, the moisture is trapped in between your skin and the fabric; the damp fabric results in discomfort and fatigue, reducing an athlete's performance. Moisture management fabrics are designed to transport sweat away from the body to the outer layers of the fabric, where the sweat evaporates leaving the apparel dry, lightweight and comfortable.
The same bright sun that brings warm temperatures perfect for playing tennis can also be dangerous to athletes. One in five Americans will contract skin cancer. Approximately 1.3 million new cases of skin cancer will be diagnosed in America during this year alone! The incidence of malignant melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer, has increased 1,800% since 1930. Exposure to UVR can cause not only sunburn but also lasting skin damage. This may result in premature skin ageing and skin cancer. With such stark reality, it becomes more and more clear that athletes must take steps to protect themselves from the sun.
Summer Tennis Technology
Many of the popular brands of tennis apparel have added ventilating mesh insets to their garments. These insets allow air to flow through the fabric and allows heat to escape through the fabric away from player's bodies keeping them cooler during practice or matches.
Moisture management is probably the biggest way to help make your game more comfortable in the hot summer months. There are a number of technologies that have been developed to keep athletes drier and more comfortable while playing tennis.
The Adidas® corporation has been on the cutting edge of developing moisture management fabrics, incorporating them into their tennis apparel for maximum performance. The ClimaLite® system provides moisture management using a highly breathable fabric technology. It transfers sweat away from the skin to the garment's outer surface allowing for quick evaporation, keeping the fabric dry and you comfortable. ClimaLite uses mesh panels placed in exactly the right place to channel cooling air in and out of the garment pulling heat and sweat back out leaving players cooler and drier. Adidas' latest moisture management system, ClimaCool®, is an integrated system of technologies that work together to regulate the athlete's body temperature far better than any single fabric technology can. ClimaCool® apparel actively conducts heat and sweat away from the body through a combination of heat and moisture-dissipating materials, ventilation channels and three-dimensional fabrics that allow air to circulate close to the skin. By mapping the body's critical heat and sweat zones using infrared cameras, it was possible to place these technologies exactly where they are needed to optimize the athlete's the athlete's body temperature. An athlete can actually stay cooler in ClimaCool® apparel than they can in bare skin.
Balle De Match Yip-Dry uses quick drying micro-poly fabric that wicks moisture away from the skin. By moving the moisture to the surface of the fabric it evaporates more quickly leaving players cooler and dryer and more able to focus on their game. The Yip-Dry system combines the micro-poly fabric with Coolmax® technology that moves perspiration away from the body to the fabric's outer surface, where it can evaporate quickly. This thermoregulatory effect helps players stay drier and more comfortable. New Balance has created Lightning Dry, a new fabric for moisture management. This fabric allows the transfer of moisture to the surface of the material allowing for rapid evaporation. This means that your garment stays dry and you stay cool and comfortable. Reebok has created PlayDry, a fabric with an interlock designed to wick moisture from the skin for the ultimate breathability and comfort.
Nike continues to bring new, innovative fabric technologies to players. The latest, Nike Sphere React Dry, actually changes shape to help keep players dry and cool. The material's structure is flat when dry and expands to become three-dimensional when it comes into contact with sweat. As you sweat, Nike Sphere React Dry creates a three-dimensional structure to reduce cling while driving sweat to the garment's surface. The material's structure holds the material off the skin to reduce cling even when wet with sweat, this means that you will spend less time tugging at your shirt or shorts leaving you free to concentrate on your game.
While not a new technology, Lycra® continues to improve the fit and feel of fabrics as well as increase the function of tennis apparel. With exceptional elasticity, the addition of Lycra® to a fabric provides additional freedom of movement, allowing stretch without losing the garment's shape. Lycra also means that fabrics have a low pill rate leaving them looking newer for longer.
The use of sunscreen is always recommended, but you can increase your protection by wearing specially designed UV protective clothing. Regular cotton shirts provide approximately a level 5 UV protection while this specially designed UV protective clothing will protect your skin at levels between 40 and 50. The Wilson Sunblock Collection blocks over 98% of UVA and UVB rays and has a UPF rating of 50+. The Balle de Match has produced a line of sun protective clothing, that achieves a 40+ rating. These protective garments are available for adults as well as children so that youth players can be protected as well!
A number of brands, including New Balance, Under Armour and Nike also feature antimicrobial fabric treatments. This means that garments remain odor free no matter how extreme your work out!