The water sports sector is on the increase, whether it be from long distance supping to kite surfing or the more leisurely boogie board, the fact is that consumers, at novice through to experienced levels, are turning to the water in contrast to the terrain.
The market potential of water sports actives has been highlighted at both at both the recent ISPO MUNICH and ISPO SHANGHAI through the Water Sports Villages, with water sports defined as one of the hottest sports trends for Summer 2018.
The interest in water sports activities is set to continue, highlighted in the mega trend MOMENT, featured in ISPO TEXTRENDS, sums up the consumer mood for Summer 2019, where experiences count more than personal possessions. The consumer is set to embrace travel, whether is getting in the car and heading to the nearest coast, or going to more exotic locations to participate in water sport activities.
As a result there has been a push in technical fabrics for this sector combined with an increased interest from swimwear brands in developing sports-inspired collections. This particular development is reminiscent of the way brands, in particular lingerie brands moved into the athleisure market with the development of sports bras, taking their existing know-how and applying to a new market application.
Cardo Paris, a swimwear brand geared towards the fitness sector delivering truly chic and stylish swimwear and accessories, has launched a high-end collaboration with skiwear brand Fusalp. The result is a capsule collection of four sports-chic swimsuits with molded injection zippers, figure flattering compression fabrics, a nod to the soft-shell of the fitted ski pants
Tested and approved by Claudia Riegler Dénériaz, alpine ski champion and Clementine Lucine, world champion in water skiing, the range combines visual impact and technical features.
Sustainable applications for the aqua sports sector is on the increase, pioneered by Patagonia leading the way with eco-friendly, neoprene-free wetsuits. The R3 Yulex neoprene-free wetsuit, that received an ISPO AWARD Gold Winner for 2016/2017, uses a FSC-certified rubber blend that is durable and flexible.
The plant-based Yulex rubber lessens the dependence on petroleum and reduces C02 emissions in manufacturing by at least 70 per cent. For the last eight years, the company has pioneered the use of natural rubber in wetsuits. Surfers and manufacturers can now choose plants over petroleum. Received an ISPO AWARD Gold Winner for 2016/2017.
Performance textiles are now following a more sustainable route with the launch of a collaboration between Unifi, a recycled synthetic supplier that transforms recycled plastic bottles into a fiber called REPREVE, and Finchswimwear brand.
Finch’s swimwear for women, men and kids is made exclusively from REPREVE yarn with fabrics used offering natural UPF 50+ UVA and UVB sun protection, with no added chemicals.
Finch signature prints are repeated season after season for Finch Designs is a new recipient of the Project JUST Seal of Approval and is the first-ever China-based brand to receive the distinction, which is based upon the company’s commitment to transparency and building a sustainable supply chain. Finch Designs is one of only three brands to win the Seal of Approval in the swimwear category, out of more than 115 nominations.