Shirin Gerami’s story is one which will go down in history. Shirin, Shiz to her those that know her, is the first Iranian female to represent her country in a triathlon and is paving the way for setting gender equality both in Iran and across the world. In order to race for Iran, it was essential that Shirin respected the rules of her country, and raced in clothes that covered her body and hair. It was necessary to design clothes those both adhered to these conditions, whilst ensuring her performance was not affected.
But, what part does P2i play in this incredible story? Previously, waterproof fabrics Shirin had tried were uncomfortable, lacked breathability and slowed down her performance. Shirin contacted P2i upon hearing of the liquid repellent qualities of our patented nano-technology. Our nano-technology, a thousand times thinner than a human hair, has no effect on the look or feel of a product. This means we can achieve the highest levels of water repellency without affecting the quality of a fabric. A P2i coating on the kit meant it was water repellent whilst remaining highly breathable and light – essential when trying to remain as streamlined as possible!
Shirin only received approval for her race kit from the Iranian government days before the race, so it was quite literally a race to the starting line. Consequently, Shirin did not have time to test the P2i coated kit before she began the World Triathlon Grand Final in Edmonton, Canada. Shirin explains, ‘I cannot tell you how relieved and happy I am that the coating worked exactly as I hoped it would. It was bone dry when I took my wetsuit off!’
This is just the beginning of Shirin’s inspirational journey. She excitedly told us, ‘I believe that because of the amazing knowledge, technology and, most importantly, the incredible people around me, a solution will be found for sportswear which offer covering at no athletic disadvantage. I sincerely hope these clothes will make sports more accessible to any lady who prefers sportswear that offers a degree of covering for whatever personal reason they may have: comfort, confidence, modesty or beliefs. The athlete goes on, ‘I cannot thank P2i enough for giving me this opportunity and for sticking by me despite the many challenges along the way’.
P2i is honoured to have played a role in Shirin’s truly remarkable journey and look forward to a future working relationship. Following on from P2i’s partnership with UK Sport to help protect cycling and sailing equipment and accessories, we are delighted to see our cutting-edge technology being used in the professional sporting world. The range of uses of our nano-technology is immense, ranging from coating the sportswear of people like Shirin, coating millions of smartphones, to protecting over 60% of the world’s hearing aids. The possibilities are endless.