Spinal injuries are more common in the sport of road cycling than you might think–usually the result of a forward fall over the handlebars when heading downhill, whether from slippery roads, excessive speed, being hit from behind, or a catastrophic failure in equipment. Although perhaps not quite as common as in mountain biking, why shouldn’t road cyclists seek protection from potential spinal injuries?
When POC launched the AVIP collection last fall, it was all about making road cycling safer. Besides developing high performance helmets, there were a number of new apparel and accessory products created to bring attention and visibility. Long a part of POC’s mountain bike offering, back protection is now integrated into the AVIP line for road cyclists in 2015.
The AVIP Back Protection Jersey comes with an integrated back protector, offering a unique combination of protection, comfort, and performance. The shoulders and back of the bike jersey are made from a woven stretch fabric and have a compact 3D structure, while the body is made from a 4-way stretch fabric.
For the company’s mountain bike back protectors, POC uses a material called VPD (Visco-Elastic Polymer Dough). VPD is highly impact absorbent, comfortable, and conforms to your body. The material transforms from soft to hard upon impact, meaning it can be flexible and safe at the same time.
By contrast, POC turned to Koroyd for the road cycling application—the same material used in the Smith Forefront and Overtake helmets. The open cell structure of Koroyd is much lower in weight and guarantees excellent ventilation, something you want in a road cycling jersey. Extremely safe, the thermoplastic tubular cores crush in a completely controlled manner when hit, decelerating the energy from the impact and reducing the final trauma levels.
Announced earlier this year and since winner of many design awards, Koroyd’s EOP 2.0 back protector (pictured above) is very light and breathable, offering protection in all weather conditions. It can withstand hot and cold temperatures and flexes along your spine. The EOP 2.0 back protector complies with the highest safety standards and can be placed inside motorcycle jackets, jackets for skiers and cyclists, and special protective backpacks.
No word yet on price or the exact availability of the POC AVIP Back Protection Jersey, but we should have more details from Eurobike this week or Interbike shortly thereafter.