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27 October 2009 | PR 09/146

Progressive Sports Technologies help Speedo develop the LZR Racer triathlon suit

LZR Racer triathlon suit being tested

LZR Racer triathlon suit being tested

Progressive Sports Technologies, a Loughborough University spinout company, has helped Speedo to develop a world-class triathlon suit.   Inspired by the record breaking LZR Racer swim suit worn by athletes including Michael Phelps and Rebecca Adlington to take 94% of the swimming gold medals in Beijing, the new triathlon suit is designed to be the lightest, fastest and most comfortable suit on the market.

Progressive tested a selection of elite triathletes running and cycling in the LZR racer Tri-Pro suit in a controlled climate chamber.   With a constant temperature of 32°C and 70% humidity, the suit’s quick dry, moisture wicking properties were pushed to the limit.  Infrared skin temperature measurements were captured, along with the athlete’s perception of comfort, fit and function. 

For Speedo, the Nottingham based brand world renowned for technical swimwear, the alliance with Progressive is ideal, as Dr Tom Waller Head of Aqualab, Speedo’s R&D arm, explains:  “Our performance wear is underpinned by extensive research with world-leading experts.  Progressive has tested our LZR racer Tri-Pro suit to the extreme to ensure it performs exceptionally across all phases of the triathlon.”

Based at Loughborough University’s Sports Technology Institute, Progressive works with many of the world’s leading sports brands on cutting edge research.  Current projects include the commercialisation of a garment that boosts athletic performance by training breathing muscles, which was successfully trialed by members of the GB Triathlon team also headquartered at the University.  Progressive has also developed a range of licensed fitness equipment, including an abdominal muscle training device (Ab-pump) which has recently been commercialised.

Ross Weir, Managing Director of Progressive, commented:  “As a company originating from within Loughborough University, Progressive benefits from excellent relationships with sports scientists and engineers and the array of elite athletes based here.  Our work with Speedo has enabled our expertise, coupled with access to Loughborough University’s facilities, to help Speedo launch a groundbreaking product.”

−ENDS−

For all media enquiries/further information contact:

Anna Seddon
Marketing Manager, Enterprise Office
Loughborough University
T: 01509 222445
E: A.J.Seddon@lboro.ac.uk 

Joe Santry
Progressive Sports Technologies Ltd
T: 01509 564809,
E: joe@progressivesports.co.uk ,
W: www.progressivesports.co.uk 

Notes for editors:

1.  Progressive Sports Technologies (www.progressivesports.co.uk)
Progressive Sports Technologies is a sports innovation consultancy based within the Sports Technology Institute at Loughborough University.  A spin-off from the University’s Sports Technology Research Group, it provides a comprehensive range of research-led new product development services to major global sports brands.  Established in early 2001, Progressive has attracted significant government funding, boasts a growing portfolio of filed patent applications and is extremely well networked within the sports industry.

2.  Loughborough University Sports Technology Institute (www.sports-technology.com)
Loughborough University Sports Technology Institute is a £15M initiative to enhance research, innovation and enterprise in the sport and leisure sector and develop cutting edge technology to support future British champions.  It is home to the Sports Technology Research Group is one of the world’s leading research groups of its kind and the largest in Europe.  The Institute has established an international reputation for its work with global brands including adidas, Callaway Golf, Canterbury of New Zealand, Dunlop, Head, New Balance, Nike, Reebok, Slazenger, Spalding, Speedo and Umbro on the design, simulation, testing and manufacture of sporting goods.

3Loughborough University
Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for excellence in teaching and research, strong links with industry and unrivalled sporting achievement.

It was awarded the coveted Sunday Times University of the Year 2008-09 title, and is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in national newspaper league tables. In the 2008 National Student Survey, Loughborough was voted one of the top five universities in the UK, with 22 out of 30 of its subject areas being ranked in the top ten for overall satisfaction. It was named winner of the 2006, 2007 and 2008 Times Higher award for the UK’s Best Student Experience and winner of the 2007 award for Outstanding Support for Overseas Students. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, the University has been awarded six Queen's Anniversary Prizes – an achievement bettered by no other institution.

It is a member of the esteemed 1994 Group – a set of internationally recognised, research-intensive universities – and has a reputation for the relevance of its work. Its degree programmes are highly regarded by professional institutions and businesses, and its graduates are consistently targeted by the UK’s top recruiters.

Loughborough is also the UK’s premier university for sport. It has perhaps the best integrated sports development environment in the world and is home to some of the country’s leading coaches, sports scientists and support staff. It also has the country’s largest concentration of world-class training facilities across a wide range of sports.

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