Ralph Lauren is about to throw its traditional style into the 21st century thanks to a new project and support with extremely interesting digital clout. The fashion brand has been working with a Canada-based tech company, OMsignal, to pioneer the “Polo Tech shirt" which will see a refreshing reinvention of the standard style and movement into a new world of wearable technology.
The washable compression garment has a second-skin feel to it and is deliberately developed to stimulate blood flow and aid muscle recovery, whilst underneath conductive silver thread technology is woven into the material. The real science behind the fabric is upon contact with the skin, where they then gather biometric information, charting heart rate, energy level, breathing rate and intensity, but it doesn’t stop there. Attached to the rib cage area of the shirt is a lightweight device which will transmit real time information to a Bluetooth connected iPhone.
Each shirt is embellished with the classic Polo Ralph Lauren logo and comes in black nylon. The reworking of the staple piece of menswear coincides with the US Open tennis championships. Although no players will wear the piece during the tournament itself, the shirt will be worn by Marcon Giron during practise, along with a select few ball boys.
The shirt, which David Brewer, Director of the U.S. Open Tennis Tournament said will “revolutionize how players train and compete", will provide real time information on how the player is coping physically throughout the game, allowing the individual to better comprehend their workouts and compare against other performances.
Ralph Lauren plans to expand its technological capabilities in the future with talks of spatial tracking on the horizon, though this may take some time yet.
(Written by Megan Chambers)