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Adaptive Ski Clothing for Skiers with Disabilities

  • Publish Date : 2010/06/21 - (Rev. 2015/11/18)
  • Author : Ski 2 Freedom
  • Contact : -

Synopsis: Ski Clothing for physically disabled skiers who face problems finding the right adaptive clothing.

Main Document

Providing information on disabled friendly ski schools and ski resorts to disabled people is just part of the work of non-profit organization Ski 2 Freedom.

Ski 2 Freedom has just been asked by A2D to help introduce its UTY label of dedicated disabled ski (handiski) clothing in the UK.

Ski 2 Freedom Foundation, an independent non-profit organization, was created to be a major portal to provide comprehensive and specialist information on disabled ski schools, disabled ski equipment and accessible ski resorts so that everyone with a disability or special need could be encouraged to participate in snow-sport and mountain activities.

A2D is a textile design, development and production company, created in January 2008 by Arnaud Coquelle, an outdoor, sportswear and textile designer, who has been working in the sport industry for more than 10 years.

The UTILITY HANDI RANGE of adaptive clothing was created for physically disabled skiers who faced problems finding the right ski clothing that offered comfort and protection whilst in a sit-ski. A2D worked with physically disabled skiers to develop a sit-ski outfit that would fulfill their requirements. Just over a year later after tests and prototypes, the product is now ready for production and won ISPO Brand New Award 2010. The Handi-ski clothing has been developed in close cooperation with disabled athletes. The garment ergonomics have been rethought in close cooperation with a disabled-ski instructor : Francois Laboisette and disabled skiers : Laurent Goubier and Beatrice Larroche to provide high value in use.

Ski 2 Freedom's director and founder Catherine Cosby met with Arnuad Coquelle in Paris on 9 June 2010 at AUTONOMIC. This is an international trade fair for professionals and the general public. With more than 450 exhibitors on 20,000 sqm AUTONOMIC PARIS 2010 is the benchmark trade show where you can meet in a single place all those involved in the disability, dependence and home support sectors for a better autonomy of people at home or in institutions. Arnaud Coquelle feels that Ski 2 Freedom is an organization, which shares the same beliefs as A2D in giving disabled people who wish to enjoy the mountains in winter the best information, equipment and clothing possible. The meeting had been arranged by UTY Ltd to discuss distribution in the UK and ideas for other types of winter sport gear for disabled people.

Ski 2 Freedom is delighted to be associated with this exciting new range of ski wear specially designed for disabled skiers.

The Ski Clothing (Handiski Range)

Technical Features - taken from UTY brochure

  • Removable sleeves
  • Exclusive ski pants and jacket gaiter overlapping system (UTY INNOVATION)
  • Adjustable bottom sleeve fitting "stabilo" (hand ski)
  • Asymmetric front and back cutting, allows the jacket to be worn over the back of the seat
  • Preformed elbows
  • 3-dimensional mesh fabrics at lining to improve moisture transfer
  • Pants with preformed butt and knee shape adapted to seated position
  • High visibility, removable and adjustable helmet size hood (EN471 certified fabric)
  • High protective collar and magnetized fastener at front flap
  • Reinforced insulation with aluminum film at area most exposed to the cold
  • Side leg opening for quick access to "pee bag"
  • Velcro loop patches for removable badges

This is an exciting range of ski clothes, which meets the special requirements of physically disabled skiers. However, it suits the needs of all types of disability. With the fluorescent hood this also makes ideal ski clothing for visually impaired skiers and their guides. For people with little or no mobility who require being driven in a sit-ski or tandemski by a disabled-qualified ski instructor this range of ski clothing is perfect as one of the advantages is the reinforced insulation with aluminum film on the front of the ski trousers.

At the moment this range of disabled (handiski) ski clothing is only available for adults. However there are plans to put together a children's range with similar innovative design features. Ski 2 Freedom is working with Arnaud to help towards meeting this next objective.

Catherine Cosby, director and founder of Ski 2 Freedom, saw the outfits for the first time at the Tessier stand at AUTONOMIC and said: "I am extremely impressed by the innovative design of these ski clothes. Every detail has been well thought out so that a disabled person using a sit-ski will now have the opportunity to totally concentrate on skiing and not on whether they are cold or having to readjust normal ski clothing. My daughter Alexandra, who has Rett Syndrome, has no mobility at all and gets extremely cold in the winter. It is an exciting prospect to know that there is the possibility of using the design and unique fabric composition that UTY and A2D have to give many other disabled people the opportunity to be outside during the winter without discomfort." - www.ski2freedom.com

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