At last week’s 2022 Outdoor Retailer gear convention in Denver, Colorado, Eddie Bauer took the wraps off some very special new products. The company unveiled a new line of apparel designed specifically with sit skiers in mind—a first for the industry. The outerwear promises to provide all of the technical performance we’ve come to expect from the company, while making the slopes more accessible for disabled athletes.
Eddie Bauer Flyline
Dubbed the BC Flyline Kit, the collection of gear is specifically built with adaptive skiers in mind. All of the products that make up Flyline have been designed for athletes who use mono or bi-skis when alpine skiing. Often this takes the form of a seat—or molded plastic bucket—that is attached to either a single large ski or two narrower ones. The adaptive skier then uses a set of handheld outrigger to provide stability and control.
The Flyline collection includes the BC Flyline Jacket ($549) and the BC Flyline Adaptive Bib ($499), both of which are available now. As you would expect, both products are insulated and wind and waterproof, providing good performance in cold and wet conditions. The materials used in their construction are high-quality as well, ensuring they live up to the traditional Eddie Bauer level of durability.
But the two garments required special attention when it came to their design in order to make them appropriate for adaptive skiers. That included shaping and bolding them to be comfortable to wear while in a non-traditional skiing position. Other enhancements on the bib include additional insulation in the legs, articulated knees, full-range sleeves, and a high back to help keep the snow out.
Pro Athlete Approved
In designing the Eddie Bauer Flyline collection, the company worked closely with pro adaptive skier Trevor Kennison. Paralyzed from the waist down in a backcountry ski accident in 2014, Kennison has gone on to become one of the best adaptive free style skiers in the world. So much so, that he was even the first to compete the Winter X Games just a few weeks back. To say that he knows a thing or two about the gear that adaptive athletes need would be an understatement.
Over the past seven years, Kennison has relearned how to ski despite his injury. While it took some time to rehab and train to shred on a mono-ski, he has since become a force to be reckoned with on the hill. Unfortunately, he has struggled to find gear that meets his unique needs, which is why he jumped at the chance to work with Eddie Bauer.
“After years of skiing in traditional jackets and bibs, it became apparent that ski outerwear was not built for someone to use them in a sit ski like I was,” Kennison says in a press release announcing the Flyline collection. “Working with the design team at Eddie Bauer allowed me to make sure this kit had all the features I had ever wanted. There were numerous rounds of testing and fine-tuning. I would take the kit into the field for a couple of days, then provide photos and notes on small adjustments for the designers to make until it was the perfect kit for a sit skier.”
Opening Up the Slopes
In a somewhat uncharacteristic move for Outdoor Retailer, the Eddie Bauer Flyline collection went on sale as it was announced. The goal was to get these products out to consumers as quickly as possible, allowing the new apparel to be used this ski season rather than waiting until next. To further assist in that process, the company is working with Kennison to give away several jackets and bibs.
Working with the High Fives Foundation—a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing resources to adaptive athletes—Eddie Bauer has launched the #BeLikeTrevor campaign. Qualified skiers can submit an entry at the provided link to win a wide variety of adaptive athletic gear, including the new Flyline clothing. 20 additional kits are also being donated to the High Fives Foundation for giveaway.
We have to applaud Eddie Bauer for creating this gear. The company knows that it is not reaching a large market with this apparel, but it is definitely reaching an underserved one. EB has always been at the forefront of encouraging customers go get outside and enjoy their adventures. This is just another way that it is doing that.
Currently, the gear is designed with a men’s fit in mind, but hopefully a women’s version will follow. For more information, visit the Eddie Bauer website.
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