During any physical activity the body produces energy in the form of heat (the more intense the activity; the more heat is produced) which activates perspiration as a cooling/coping mechanism in order to prevent the body from overheating. Heat and perspiration are produced with varying intensity in different parts of the body and differ for each individual. 'Technical' clothing is designed to maintain the natural micro-climate of the body as much as possible, without too many hot or cold fluctuations. This is achieved through the layering of suitable materials according to the exercise or activity in question. Different clothing is needed for cycling, skiing or playing tennis in a hall. The end result is a piece of clothing that's warm yet breathable, or light and flexible when wet. Essentially, a garment that evolves with you in movement.
We usually refer to a system of three layers, however the quantity can change as needed regarding the weather conditions.
- First layer - wicking, absorbing (thermal garment); it is a basic building stone which wicks the perspiration away from the skin and thus keeps it relatively dry. The basic feature of the first layer is the transport of the perspiration and the ventilation.
- Second layer - insulating (fleece); it keeps the body warm and helps in transporting the perspiration to the surface.
- Second and third layer - (softshell); recently new category made of characteristic material.
- Third layer - protective (membrane jackets and pants); it protects from external elements (water, wind, cold) and at the same time enables the transport of the perspiration to the surface.