French photographer Olivier Morin had a brush with fame a couple of years ago when he took a truly iconic photo of Usain Bolt running with a bolt of lightning behind him. But here at dryrobe, he's known for some quite different photographs.
We're really proud to have had Olivier take some amazing photos of dryrobes; his style and ability to capture a feeling fit exactly with our ethic. As well as this, he's also been posting some fantastic shots of surfers lately. Check out his Instagram feed to see just how great his photos are and you'll understand why we're so chuffed to have him taking our photos.
We're delighted to hear that dryrobe has been voted as a Silver accessory in the UK in the Running Awards. What makes this award so special to us is that it's been voted for by runners themselves.
dryrobe was set up by Gideon after his mother made him a sort of mobile change room from a combination of towelling and waterproof material, to allow him to change after surfing without freezing to death. The dryrobe itself has come a long way since that early-eighties present, but its purpose and our ethos are still the same.
We're so delighted that runners have seen fit to vote us their second favourite accessory, out of all the varied running accessories available on the market. Thank you, voters of the 2016 Running Awards!
So it's not all about extreme sports. It's common knowledge spending time outside is all good but its easy to forget just how much of a difference having some quiet time outdoors can make to the way we feel.
We rarely talk to others about our feelings and it seems people have almost become afraid to spend time with their own thoughts, away from the constant distractions we make for ourselves.
When we spend time outdoors we become aware of being alive which can lead us to confront thoughts of our own mortality. The feelings and experiences, as we know them, will stop one day. Is this fear simply too frightening to spend time with?
The fear should be viewed for what it is. These are moments of clarity. They are precious. The fear shows us what we are afraid to lose & makes clear the things we appreciate.
We can feel and let go of this fear. After all no-one knows what follows these life experiences but we should embrace every opportunity to get closer to the clarity of thought that comes simply by spending time experiencing and listening to our own feelings and working out what they mean to us.
Extreme sports and putting your life on the line is one approach but the ability to confront fear, explore feelings and analyse thoughts are easily accessible to all.
Just a simple walk in the woods can be all it takes.
Pictures taken at Wistlandpound. Close to Blackmoor gate, Exmoor National Park. It's a beautiful, tranquil and quiet area, surrounded by conifer plantations and has an established nature reserve. Located near Blackmoor Gate, North Devon, it is an ideal location for walking, angling and bird watching.
featured product: dryrobe advance longsleeve - click HERE for details
#dryrobeterritory photos by Dave Keightley - howaboutdave.com
We were at Toughest OCR in London last month as official partners, and boy did we have a good time! The Toughest team really know how to throw a great event!
As it happens, Toughest is an apt name for this event; this Facebook video from the Toughest page details the gruesome course at Pippingford Park. It was definitely not for the feint of heart!
With races like this it's always amazing to see just how many competitors are willing to put themselves through such gruelling tests of their physical and mental strength and by the looks on finishers faces you could tell they'd been pushed hard. Toughest has built its reputation in Scandinavia for putting on some of the er... toughest races going with tough obstacles and even tougher terrain but being in England, they added a new element that we Brits are particularly familiar with - mud and lot's of it!
There was a brilliant atmosphere with the crowd really enjoying watching and cheering on contestants. For a first race in the UK Toughest certainly made their mark on the OCR circuit; this was a brilliant race to watch and dryrobe team member Ben enjoyed running it:
The finisher photos featured people holding up a sign saying "I need a bath" and after getting around that course a bath was definitely on people's to do list ASAP! Unfortunately that's not possible when you're in the middle of Pippingford Park but thankfully we were on hand to provide the next best thing to keep you warm and dry and allow you to change into some clean clothes before you can get home for that bath.
Toughest London - Ross Macdonald
23rd April 2016, Pippingford Park
Photos by James Appleton
Ross Macdonald, dryrobe ambassador and member of the British Military Fitness Race Team, gives us his thoughts on Toughest London - one of the most eagerly anticipated obstacle-course races of 2016.
"Toughest Races have built a reputation up in Scandinavia for putting together hard, fast, innovative, obstacle-heavy races which attract the top athletes from around Europe. I had attended Toughest Oslo in 2015 and experienced just how good their courses are… as well as how great the Scandinavians at racing around them! After months of build-up, Toughest arrived in London to put the UK to the test.
Toughest brought with them obstacles such as ‘Dragon’s Back’, ‘Sternum Checker’ and ‘Platinum Rig’. These are obstacles which can test the nerve of experienced athlete’s, so for those attempting their first OCR, they had really jumped in at the deep-end. However, Toughest have hard and easy lanes- which is a concept I am a big fan of. Completing a hard lane means you can get straight back into working your way around the 8km course. However, fail the hard lane and you are straight into a penalty run which can often add a minute to your time. Alternatively, take the easy lane (which are still normally quite challenging) and upon completion, you have an extra net-crawl or walls to conquer before you can continue. Again, fail and you are off on the penalty run.
The obstacles which Toughest are already renowned for are their Dragon’s Back obstacle, the Ramp and the Super Slide. Dragon’s Back involves jumping several feet from one platform to another. This would be easy at ground level, but at 10 feet in the air it brings a mental element into play which causes havoc. Unfortunately the Super Slide had to be closed for safety reasons at Toughest London after the elite heat, meaning I was one of the lucky few who got to go down. The lip at the bottom created some great air and this is reason enough to enter next year (check out Toughest events abroad for even bigger slides and ski slopes!). Finally The Ramp is fantastic as it requires more technique than you would expect. When I ran the course for a second time this was much more challenging as it was covered in mud! Jon Albon has it easy.
The mud at Pippingford was new territory for Toughest. The events in Scandinavia largely take place on tarmac, with some events on sand and only small sections on trail or mud. Toughest London being at Pippingford was always going mean mud. However, everyone in the UK is used to getting splattered in mud and cold water so this wasn’t a problem.
In 2015 Jon Albon, OCR World Champion in 2014 and 2015, dominated the Toughest Race Series (as well as almost everything else he entered). This was the same result at Toughest London as Jon showed that if anything, he has gone up yet another gear. It is getting scary to think about how many gears Jon has got! What made this even better was Henriette Albon, Jon’s wife and teammate at Team Santander, crossed the line first in the women’s elite race. They may be living and training in Norway now, but Jon is still a Brit! Conor Hancock, of Team MuddyRace, made a great late surge to claim second place in the men’s. Freya Martin, my teammate at British Military Fitness, had a great race and claimed fourth in the women’s despite some obstacle controversy and I managed 17th, which given I had a semi-decent race shows just how strong this field was!
The event village had a great atmosphere, helped by several obstacles being in or around the same area. Thanks to dryrobe, everyone was kept warm pre and post-race.
Toughest Races take place throughout the year in Malmo, Stockholm, Oslo, Umea, Copenhagen and Gothenburg. They are well worth travelling to and making a nice weekend break out of it!"
Be sure to follow Ross and the British Military Fitness Race Team on social media to stay up to date with their activities!
Stay tuned as we have some official team kit in the pipeline for these guys coming very soon!
Our new Jersey based USA office only opened for business in December 2015 but we have some friends over the pond and thanks to them along with the core UK & Scandinavian crew taking the dryrobes to last years OCR World Championships, dryrobes have definitely made a big impact in the states since their arrival. The race took place on October 17-18th in Cincinnati, Ohio, and the conditions were freezing. The dryrobes came into their own.
Photo (above) courtesy of Toughest Race
This year The OCR World Championships are taking place in the Blue Mountain Resort, Ontario, Canada on October 14-16th. We can safely assume that the weather is yet again going to be very cold and will add an extra element of difficulty to the challenge facing the competitors. It will certainly be #dryrobeterritory.
We were asked to design a custom dryrobe in collaboration with OCR Gear specifically for the 2016 event and what we've created for them is a seriously smart looking piece of kit.
Available ONLY by pre-order for the 2016 OCRWC event from the OCR Gear website. Order now and your dryrobe will be waiting for you at packet pickup at the event!
Here is the link to the page on the OCR Gear Website. CLICK HERE
Also check out our Facebook page, Instagram & Twitter accounts @dryrobe & @dryrobeUSA
The US website is live now at http://www.dryrobeusa.com/ :)
Time to head back to the outdoors! Beach lifesaving training is beginning again. As well as being an incredibly valuable skill and service, lifesaving is also a competitive sport and dryrobe are delighted to be providing kit for Team GB Lifesaving. As a competitive sport Surf lifesaving gives lifeguards the opportunity to practice and hone their skills.
Competitors in lifesaving take part in a beach sprint and a beach sprint relay, as well as a beach flags knock out event.
Also there's a beach run which is over a distance between 500-2000 metres depending on the age of the competitor.
The ocean side of surf life saving sport involves races for both individuals and teams, and a board race and board relay. As well as this, there is a ski race and ski relay, a pairs tube rescue, board rescue, a run-swim-run and Oceanman / Oceanwoman. In this, competitors cover a 1400 metre course including swimming, boards and skis.
There is also an IRB (inflatable rescue boat) contest and a surf boat section. All of this replicates all of the elements of the skills needed to save a life on the beach or at sea. Surf life saving builds confidence and team work in competitors, improving fitness and honing the ability to save a life in any circumstance.
All of this is incredibly hard on competitors, especially when competing at a national level. We are so proud to be involved, providing kit to keep competitors warm between heats and after events.
Team GB lifesaving will be competing in the Lifesaving World Championships later this year which will take place in the Netherlands. The pool events in Eindhoven and the beach/ocean events in Noordwijk aan Zee.
We're pleased to announce a new two-year partnership deal with Castle Triathlon. When the six weekend Castle Triathlon festivals take place, dryrobe will now be hosting Official Athlete Preparation Zones.
A dryrobe is essential for many triathletes to keep warm before their race, so we're pleased to be involved, helping them to prepare for their event. There will be bespoke changing and preparation areas for triathletes as they come in to begin their challenge. On top of this, each Bastion full iron distance triathlete will receive a free towel dryrobe when they finish their race.
(Pictured here: special edition dryrobe Advance Tri-Series Custom branded dryrobe)
We're really proud of our products and we know it's the pefect kit for both before and after events where competitors have undergone some really hard physical challenges before reaching that finish line.
The dryrobe is spacious enough to pull your arms inside and change out of your wet, sweaty kit and into something a little more comfortable. You can change out of a wetsuit or swim suit easily while staying warm and preserving your modesty.
dryrobes are already often seen at Castle Triathlon Series events, so it seemed like a natural partnership for us to join forces and offer Castle triathletes the chance to prepare for their event in a purpose built changing and preparation area. It's as much a mental challenge as a physical one, so that time before the race begins is really important to feel focused and ready.
We are looking forward to this season getting underway.
Red Bull #neptune steps has built a fearsome reputation from the first event last year. dryrobe provided all 100 competitors with a custom event dryrobe thanks to Red Bull. They were needed. It proved to be seriously cold. This year there were 200 competitors. We supplied the winners with the dryrobe advance as prizes this year & the air temperature was kinder but that water is cold!
The unique format open-water swimming race is an adventure race / obstacle course race which involve swimming through 420 metres of cold water, with 8 canal lock gates to climb along the way.
Well done to the winners! And What an achievement by Mark Deans (last years champion) winning this year again!! Awesome!
Podium: Women - Red BullUK #NeptuneSteps 200 athletes, 420 metres of cold water, 8 canal lock gates. #dryrobe #dryrobeterritory 1st: Shannon Botham (08.08) 2nd: Helen Smith (08.29) 3rd: Cliona Ferguson (08.52) Photo: @Redbulluk
Podium: Men - Red Bull UK #NeptuneSteps . #dryrobe Proud to be an official partner for the second year! 1st: Mark Deans (05.47) - winner for the second year - undefeated champ. 2nd: Mark Austin (06.04) 3rd: James Walton (06.17) Photos: Red Bull UK
Great Event - but would you expect anything else from RedBull. Epic!
Video & photos - courtesy of Red Bull UK
We started with Sport Relief back in 2014 when Davina McCall did her Sport Relief challenge, Beyond Breaking Point, covering 500 miles in seven days We were asked by the Sport Relief Team to supply our dryrobe Advance product.
The TV presenter Davina McCall had to be carried out of the water after completing a 1.5 mile swim in a freezing cold Windermere as part of her Sport Relief challenge & the Team got her straight into the hotel & into her dryrobe to warm up & recover.
When we spoke to her after the event on facebook she said she had absolutely loved the dryrobe.
This Year 2016 Radio 1 presenter Greg James challenge was a tough one #gregathlon Greg James challenge was to complete a triathlon a day for five consecutive days, in five different UK cities. This meant covering more than 50 miles each day, and the weather was against him.
We were asked again by the sport relief team & were proud to supply dryrobes for this challenge. It was great to see Greg James & the legendary celebrity trainer Greg Whyte making good use of their dryrobes.
Photos & videos courtesy of Sport Relief
Greg completed his incredible feat in February you can see how he got on in this video:
For a while in the middle there he looked like he was struggling, but can you believe he actually jumped over the finish line on the final day!
So far Greg has raised over a million pounds for Sport Relief and we are incredibly proud to have helped him a little along the way.
We enjoy sports and a good challenge as much as the next person, but five triathlons in five days? We'll leave that to you, Greg if that's OK. Great Job!
Endurance athletes know that cold is an enemy. Second rule of fit club is - Never get cold. #dryrobeterritory