Apart from coordinated shirts or jerseys, when it comes to pro gamers, not much is generally said about what they wear. However, that may soon change. In a new collaboration, gaming company Resolve Esports and sportswear company SKINS are working to develop a line of high performance wear specifically suited for gamers.
An article from Esports Insider cited the official release about the collaboration in which the CEO of Resolve Esports, Ilias Pajoheshfar, said, “As we move to the next stage of our journey, we are looking at ways to increase our advantage over other teams.We have a responsibility to our players, and we feel that through partnerships like this we can increase the focus on health and wellbeing within esports. We are looking forward to a long and successful relationship with SKINS.”
As more and more clothing brands release their takes on athletic wear, athleisure, and more fashions that are supposed to promote “health and wellbeing,” it’s fair to wonder exactly how realistic these claims are. Does a pair of stretch pants really make the wearer healthier? Well, according to an article from fitness magazine, Shape, called “Do Your Workout Clothes Actually Affect Your Performance?,” the answer is: Yes.
Citing various studies from The Journal of Experimental Social Psychology and the work of clinical and sports psychologist, Leah Lagos, PsyD, BCB, (among other sources) the workout clothes article notes that “clothing influences behavior and attitudes because it carries a symbolic meaning.” In reference to pro athletes, the article quotes Lagos saying “An athlete may gain a perceived psychological edge on his opponents by wearing certain outfits or designs… Research has shown that professional sports teams wearing black uniforms are more aggressive than sports teams wearing non-black uniforms.” Furthermore, certain materials make for sweat wicking, friction reduction, warmth, and other benefits that help traditional athletes compete.
On top of that, there’s a long tradition of clothing brands collaborating with pro sports teams and organizations, designing their uniforms and equipment. With advances in technology and science regarding performance wear, the kits that these clothing companies provide teams have evolved as well. So, there is a definite precedent for the Resolve Esports and SKINS team-up.
Among the benefits both companies will gain from the collaboration, Resolve Esports’ teams will get complete high-performance wear uniform kits from the SKINS. Resolve Esports’ first team, female team, and academy lineup will get to wear the gear and SKINS will get the publicity and access to a whole new prospective demographic of consumers.
Considering the fact that the esports industry is booming, a lot of different industries are going to be looking for new ways to tap into the market. Finding and developing new must-haves for gamers to spend their money on and capitalizing on the exposure and influence garnered by collaborations and sponsorships is a key way for companies to do so. Considering the health concerns that exist for pro gamers (which we’ve written about here), the potential healthful and competitive advantages performance wear might offer may well be worth it.
Since fashion exists at the intersection of aesthetics, form, and function, it’s interesting to note the ways in which past crossovers between traditional sports and the fashion industry have influenced culture overall. Changes in streetwear, footwear, sportswear, and more have been shaped by trends in popular sports so as to undeniably affect both our society and economy over the years. For instance, consider the shift from leather shoes and cloth sneakers of decades past to the rise of gym shoes, trainers, Nikes, Jordans, Air Force Ones, etc. As the attention and capital (both cultural and economic) held by traditional sports begins to be shared by esports, it’ll be interesting to see how this collaboration between Resolve Esports and SKINS will begin the process of folding fashion further into the equation.