In fact, those are 3D aluminum cooling spheres built into adidas’ latest workout gear. Which are also incorporated with fabric woven with titanium. The release of the adidas Climachill line has gone high-tech in an effort to cool runners and other athletes in warm conditions.
The 200-plus tiny aluminum cooling spheres positioned in a pattern inside the garment aim to provide an “instant chill effect,” says Heike Leibl, senior VP of training at adidas. The spheres space out on the back, neck and forearms to match up to the warmest areas of the body and provide a cooling sensation upon contact.
While when full of sweat, the Climachill top can feel slightly heavy with the aluminum spheres, the cooling sensation does last throughout a workout and isn’t restricted to a first-touch cool down.
The rest of the Climachill tops—which include running, training and tennis tees and tanks—provide some fresh adidas technology too, using a fabric designed to transfer heat from the body.
The micro-fiber fabric outer allows the apparel to act like open mesh and moves excess moisture away from the skin, the company claims, using evaporation and conduction methods. The SubZero flat yarn weaves titanium throughout the product. Flat yarn has more surface area than traditional forms making it able to transfer heat by covering more skin. The titanium offers additional cooling properties.
Adidas tested the line in a climate chamber with temperatures as high as 122 degrees Fahrenheit and used a 95-degree hot plate to simulate critical functions of the skin. With that style of testing, we see the need for all the cooling adidas can muster.
Tim Newcomb covers stadiums, design and gear for Sports Illustrated. Follow him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb.