Speed, power and agility. Short track speed skating is a spectacular sport in every respects. But also a sport where you wish to offer the skaters safety. The organisation (KSNB and TIG Sports) of the ISU Short Track Speed Skating World Cup in Dordrecht asked us for a padding system that offers safety and is simple to install.
The World Cup matches took place in the ice hockey arena. There was already an existing boarding around this rink. Because we did not want to remove the entire boarding , but wanted to guarantee optimal safety, this was the place to bring a novelty into practice: a hybrid padding system.
Freestanding padding: extra safety in the corners
The idea is simple. On the straight sections we applied a fixed padding against the existing ice hockey boarding. But in the corners we temporarily replaced the existing boarding for freestanding padding. The corners in particular are a risk zone: the short track speed skaters enter them at top speed and this is when the risk of a crash is highest.
Breeuwse: head first into the padding
In the case of a fall the freestanding padding moves backwards with a fall. This allows the impact of the crash to be absorbed optimally. The system was immediately effectively tested by Olympic short track speed skater Daan Breeuwse. He had a major crash and flew head first into the padding. Breeuwse suffered little damage thanks to our freestanding padding. Afterwards he said that his season would have possibly been over had it not been for the fixed padding…