Hi! Do you remember about the design contest I was in? Now I can tell you more details.
The shop, Tozando, has already posted our projects for the Dream Kote Project in their web. Our task was to think how we could improve kotes (kendo protections for hands and forearms), having the original kote as a model. For some months we have been discussing the problems with the actual kotes, and how we could help that and still being under the federation rules (which are A LOT).
I'm in the Go Wild Team, and our kote is the Wild Spirit kote. There are some of the improvements we thought:
- Shock Absorvant Material (SAM) to reduce drastically the impact of the shinai on the arm. The specific SAM will be chosen by the Tozando's techs. There are different kinds of SAMs, the one I checked is a kind of gel/foam that Asics is already using in their trainers, that dispels the impact force so your body doesn't gets any. You can throw an egg from a height of several meters and it doesn't breaks when it lands, because the foam absorves all the impact. Thus you could train with all your force without thinking about injurying your classmates, and if you are the one receiving the hit you won't feel anything. This also gets rid of all the stitch rows, so the kote is lighter and more flexible.
- All washable kote. Based on materials already in use in some Tozando models, our kote can be washed entirely. No more smelly kotes!
- Synthetic palm. We don't want to use deer skin, because we want our product to be eco friendly.
- Longer tsutsu. Our kote will be 1/5 longer than usual in other to protect more area of the forearm.
- 3 colors design to differentiate the kote areas, in other to help the referees to know where the hit landed and for the begginers to know where to hit.
- More flexibility on the wrist based on Tozando's Wakon Tomoe.
- No himo. Size will be adjusted to the arm with elastic bands closing with Velcro, so the kote perfectly fits your arm and keeps it on it's place, without reducing wrist mobility.
- Embroidery customization of your name/flag/mon on the tsutsu to give it your personal touch and differentiate partners (or your own kote in case you take the off) during events.
We also thought about changing colours and add patterns but that is on Tozando's hand now because of the federation rules.
You can watch our design here: www.tozando.com/int/20140731-t…
Now the Tozando's techs will evaluate the viability of our projects, and when they develop the final product based on it, they will send us a pair of our designed kotes!
I can't wait to see the result and receive my own pair~ Go look at the other projects too! (All 3 of them will be produced and sold on Tozando)
Stamps & icons I made: