Nike’s Hyper Elite Platinum Uniforms

25 01 2012

Nike has fused low uniform weight with environmental conservation. Who isn’t going ‘green’ these days? In an increasingly critical and informed society, the pressure is on companies to practice social responsibility.

A company’s ability to lighten its environmental footprint resonates with customers. People want great products, but many are placing value on how those products are made. Another good example of that came from a Nike event I attended this morning for their Hyper Elite Platinum college basketball uniforms.

Within the bowels of the Hudson Hotel on NYC’s Westside, Nike unveiled why these uniforms are unique: they’re the lightest basketball uniforms ever made, according to them. The unis clock in at less than a pound – five ounces for the shorts and roughly the same for the jerseys. Nike said a pound of weight was removed from their previous college basketball uniforms. Other design techniques, such as laser cutting holes in the side panels of the jerseys and shorts and removing stitching in favor of bonded seams, cuts out miniscule amounts of weight.

The jerseys are made with at least 96 percent recycled polyester with 12 plastic bottles, on average, comprising the material. The shorts are 100 percent recycled polyester and are made from 11 plastic bottles, on average. Nike said that 440 million plastic bottles that would have made their way to landfills were diverted from there to their manufacturers to create these uniforms. There is your social responsibility. Improve the environment and (hopefully) make a great product at the same time.

Rather than bore you with more tech and design chatter, I figured I’d display a group of thumbnails. This way, you can see what the jerseys look like. I’m interested in what you think. Does a company practicing social responsibility matter to you? Does it affect the way you perceive them? Are you more interested in buying products from companies that do something good for the environment? And what do you think of the design of these uniforms?