Just a fraction of a second can determine whether a track and field athlete is first or last. While many factors impact the performance of individual sprinters, distance runners, throwers, and jumpers, a uniform shouldn’t be one of them. Track athletes should reach the finish line feeling light, comfortable, and sweat-free while preparing for the next race, hurdle, or competition.
They should be comfortable on the field which will allow them to perform at their best. When choosing new track apparel, it’s important for high school coaches to understand key fabric features that not only indicate quality but also allow for peak performance. Check out our tips below for the four features coaches should look for when choosing the perfect custom track and field uniform for your team.
Choose the Ever-Lasting Sublimation
When opting for sublimated apparel, coaches are choosing to make an investment in quality, long-lasting gear. Sublimation uses heat to infuse high-quality designs directly into breathable fabrics. By heat-infusing artwork onto lightweight, breathable moisture-wicking material, sublimated artwork won’t peel, fade or crack, guaranteeing apparel that lasts for years.
With sublimation, you can make anything, which means coaches can continue to invest in quality track apparel without worrying about factors like color differences. This key feature means that coaches won’t have to worry about replacing the entire team’s apparel when new athletes join the team.
Remember to Choose Water-Resistant Uniforms
Just like the competition, the weather at next week’s meet is tough to predict. That’s why it’s important to choose track team apparel that can withstand wind, rain, and chilly conditions. Look for fabrics that clearly say they are wind and water-resistant. A great option would be polyester. Polyester is breathable and durable and ensures track teams’ perform at their peak level.
Go for moisture-wicking fabrics
As the moisture-wicking fabric is made to respond to environmental changes, runners, throwers, and jumpers are able to stay dry even during the toughest conditions. Moisture-wicking fabrics increase the rate of evaporation when athletes’ temperature rises and reduces the rate of evaporation when they’re cooler. By responding to these changes, track teams are able to stay comfortable throughout the entire meet. Synthetic fabrics, like polyester, are best for wicking away moisture. Avoid everyday fabrics like cotton and wool as they are often not treated to keep moisture away. Cotton often leaves athletes feeling hot and sticky, which not only produces more sweat but may also hinder performance.
Choose materials that protect from odor-causing bacteria
Last, but not least, try to go for antimicrobial fabrics. These fabrics keep sprinters, distance runners, throwers, and jumpers fresh and confident while they’re on the track. The material destroys or inhibits the growth of microorganisms, like pathogenic microorganisms. This is an important quality feature because it means that track apparel is less likely to get contaminated by bacteria, viruses, and funguses like mold and mildew. The fabric is treated to reduce odor-causing bacteria from attaching to and multiplying on fabric. When choosing antimicrobial fabrics, coaches are able to prolong the life of a uniform while keeping runners healthy.