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Futuristic gear takes center ice at Olympics

A two-year product development process has come to an end at Bauer Hockey where the company has introduced a new line of equipment, including a futuristic full body suit, made of ultra light materials to be worn by the world’s best players in February.

Bauer Hockey said it worked with six of the biggest names in the sport ( Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews, Nic Backstrom, Alex Ovechkin, Claude Giroux and Henrik Lundqvist) to create the line called Bauer OD1N which it characterized as the most revolutionary line of equipment ever introduced to the sport of hockey. The gear won’t be available in retail stores, but over time Bauer expects the innovations to work their way into products for the mass market.

“We challenged our research, design and development team in St Jerome, Quebec, to create the ‘concept car’ of hockey equipment,” said Kevin Davis, CEO and president of Bauer Performance Sports. “We asked them, ‘What if?’ What if we took away all the limitations we normally have, like materials, cost and commercialization process and focused solely on creating equipment that can be scientifically proven to make players better. The team focused on this challenge for more than two years and the result is Bauer OD1N.”

The line includes a fully re-imagined skate with carbon fiber, a personalized protective body suit and a customized goal pad. The skates are the lightest ever developed and weigh nearly a third less than Bauer’s previously lightest skate to help players avoid more than 1,000 pounds of lifted weight over the course of a game. The body suit is made up of a two piece base layer system with exposed protective pieces to enhance mobility, protection and weight reduction. The suit weighs four pounds less than traditional equipment offering comparable protection and is created by using an optical body scan of each athlete to customize fit. Similar technology and materials went into the design of the goal pad which reduces the weight lifted by the goalie over the course of a game by 180 pounds.

“Today’s hockey equipment is already so good, that it’s tough to imagine that there is still another leap to take as far as technology, but that’s exactly what Bauer did,” said Jonathan Toews with the Chicago Blackhawks and Team Canada. “As a hockey player, the last thing you want to do on the ice is worry about your equipment. With this new equipment, it’s not even an afterthought because you feel like you’re not wearing anything.”
 

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