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Meet the protective skating gloves that are great to wear

Falling is an unavoidable part of ice skating. Here’s one way you can make it less painful.

27 October 2014 - It’s the stuff of nightmares. Or Hollywood movies. You fall. You instinctively stretch out your arms to try to protect your head and face. But your hands slide out from you on the frictionless surface. You look around and see your fellow skaters trying to avoid skating over your hands and fingers with their razor-sharp blades….

Luckily, serious injuries are usually avoided. But not always. And hands – whether due to blade cuts or abrasion – are among the parts of the body most vulnerable to injury. The obvious answer is to wear protective gloves. But effective protective gloves tend to be thick, hot, stiff and generally unpleasant and sweaty to wear. The reality is that no matter how much people intend to take the necessary precautions, the temptation is to stick them in a pocket rather than pull them over your hands.

New fabric technology can keep hands safer

Now though, new fabric technology is making it possible to design gloves that are thin, light, and comfortable, while also offering outstanding cut protection. The results are being seen in general-use protective work gloves, gloves for specialist fields, like assembly work – and now, ice skating.

It comes with the introduction by Dutch sports clothing specialist Hunter Sportswear of a new safety glove for ice skaters. The glove, which offers class 5 cut protection – the highest level – is unique because rather than depending on fiberglass or steel for its protective properties, it uses Dyneema® Diamond Technology. Compared with a conventional protective glove of the same class, gloves made with Dyneema® Diamond Technology are lighter, more flexible, thinner and breathe better. Fiberglass is also more brittle than Dyneema® fiber, tends to break easily, and can cause skin irritation.

A protective skating glove that looks and feels good

The gloves recently had their official introduction at a trade show in the Netherlands, where they were widely praised for their good fit and form, appealing looks, warmth, and price. “Thanks to its light weight, the glove is able to provide wearer comfort comparable to that of standard sports gloves,” says Hunter’s Jeroen de Vries. “Having worked with DSM Dyneema before, we realized that class 5 was attainable, without the use of fiberglass and significant loss of dexterity. With these new gloves, maximum hand safety is now available.”

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