There have been some significant advancements in the utilization of thermoset polymers and other specialty plastics in the creation of activewear and athletic gear. Some of the specialty plastics used in athletic wear and gear include polyurethane, polycarbonate, nanotechnology and fluoroTechnolgoy to name a few.

Polyurethane is frequently found in athletic shoes and can make them more resilient. Most running and athletic shoes have cushioned plastic soles with durable plastic uppers and laces. Today’s high-tech shoes keep getting lighter and lighter due to the plastics used. Polyurethane can also be found in surf boards. The original heavy wood surfboards have largely been replaced with lightweight plastics to provide improved buoyancy. Polyrethane is also used in the production of soccer balls, roller blades and bowling balls.

Polycarbonate, a tough shatter-resistant plastic, can be found in a wide variety of popular protective sports equipment. It is used in riding and biking helmets to protect riders against head injuries. It can also be used in sunglasses, safety googles and protective visors providing optical clarity and shatter-resistance. Polycarbonate can also be found in shin guards and mouth guards.

Nanotechnology involves the manipulation and understanding of matter at the nanoscale. Nanotechnology can improve the performance of golf balls allowing the golfer to better manipulate the ball, making it go where the golfer intended. Most modern tennis rackets are made with composites, such as plastics combined with carbon fiber, typically called carbon fiber-reinforced plastics. They’re lighter weight, stiffer, and stronger than many of the previous materials used for rackets.

FluoroTechnology involves the addition of unique, profoundly valuable performance properties in products used by outdoor enthusiast. For example, fabrics with breathable layers and repellent finishes that provide water and oil repellency and stain resistance. FluoroTechnology items can also keep people safe by delivering life-saving protection under extreme climate conditions.

Surfboards, tennis rackets, goggles, sneakers, golf clubs, and many other types of activewear and sports equipment are currently made using the latest innovations in specialty plastics. The Polymers Technology Center is located at 8900 Research Drive, Charlotte, NC 28262. To contact us, call (704) 602-4106 or Email us. We look forward to hearing from you.