16 February 2011, Munich - Mizuno´s new ‘Breath Thermo’ collection, has won a renowned Runner's World ispo-Award 2011, in the ‘Running Apparel’ category. The award from the world´s biggest running magazine has three categories, Hardware, Electronic and Textile. Runner’s World presented the award during German trade show winter ispo 2011 to Hiroshi Sako, Mizuno’s European Apparel Business Manager.
The Breath Thermo collection consists of garments which heat up when the body perspires, in light, middle and heavy weight knit constructions to suit a variety of sporting and colder climate conditions. Also included in the collection are knitted arm warmers, socks and leggings. Fabrics are of very high quality and garments are beautifully assembled as would be expected of the leading Japanese sports brand which targets running, golf and mountain sports markets with Breath Thermo.
Hiroshi Sako, Breath Thermo Product Manager, explains how the unique fabric works: “Breath Thermo maintains a constant cycle of heat generation when you are training in cold conditions. First it absorbs moisture from the body. That moisture is converted to heat as the vapours naturally produced by the body react with the material. The heat generated is then trapped between the fibres, keeping you warm dry and comfortable.”
Mizuno's booth at ispo 2011Most Breath Thermo fabrics consist of between 6% - 14% polyacrylate fibre with the balance being made up of quick drying polyester. The polyacrylate fibre is engineered not to extend or expand in diameter when it absorbs moisture and the absorbed water molecules agitate when restricted to create heat energy through friction. When saturated the polyacrylate cools and the polyester takes the moisture away allowing new moisture from the skin to be absorbed by the polyacrylate, recommencing the heating cycle.
Breath Thermo is a joint development with Toyobo and a Japanese spinner. The fibre and resultant yarns have proved extremely difficult to process and Mizuno and its partners have spent some years perfecting the technology.
The ispo awards expert jury screens all innovations, concepts and new products presented during ispo and the central criteria for the 2011 awards were outstanding innovation, suitability for daily use and its selling potential. Furthermore, the product should descend from a successful product line, have a good price/performance ratio, a non-standard design, innovative materials and an innovative production, be durable and of high quality. Breath Thermo is said to have fulfilled all these criteria.
“Mizuno, a Japanese sporting goods company with more than 100 years history has established itself with numerous innovations, convincing concepts and a clear strategy as one of the leading running brands in Europe. Breath Thermo is the first sports fabric that generates heat. It absorbs moisture and turns it into heat energy. It does not only keep you warm but warms you actively. Moreover it keeps the body dry, acts as a deodorant, neutralizes acid and alkaline, controls the pH value and is gentle to the skin,” Mizuno says.