As ideal a scenario as it may be, you can’t always avoid riding when it’s hot outside. And as tempting as it may seem, ditching your riding gear to stay cool is not the smartest way to beat the heat. Inuteq is a Dutch company that specialises in personal cooling technologies and products that offer a solution – a cooling vest that you wear under your riding jacket.
The Bodycool Smart is the company’s most advanced product because of its patented Inuteq- Dry technology. Unlike a number of other cooling vests that require you to soak them in water before use, this one delivers while staying completely dry from the outside. Here’s how it works:
The vest has a slit on the upper back that you fill with water. Once that’s done, you lay the vest flat and distribute the water so it’s absorbed by the company’s patented, wicking polyester fleece. Open the slit again, gently squeeze out the excess water and that’s all there is to it. The results are immediate, too. The cooling effect is based on the principle of natural evaporation, and therefore the result is dependent on humidity and airflow. Small ventilation holes across the vest facilitate the evaporation process.
Inuteq claims that 500ml of water will provide cooling for upto 3 days. While we got similar durations with our vest, the cooling effect does deteriorate as the moisture in the vest reduces. We found that, for optimal cooling, it’s best that you redo the process after a day and a half. The manual also states that the vest is good for 750 dry-wet cycles, after which the internals won’t be as efficient in absorbing and holding moisture.
Vest can be filled with normal water.
Once you put it on, the vest is very lightweight and fits snug, so it doesn’t feel like another unnecessary layer of riding gear. Elastic mesh on the sides aid comfort and also enhance airflow. You can machine-wash the vest, which makes it easy to maintain.
I also tried filling the vest with cold water, but it didn’t make much of a difference after the first few minutes. On a couple of occasions, I also didn’t squeeze all the excess water out of the vest and this actually improved cooling in a way. The water collects at the bottom of the vest and I found that every time I bent forward, it would spread across the surface of my back and immediately feel a lot cooler. Now, this isn’t ideal and it’s not what the manufacturer recommends, as the water will slowly seep out of the ventilation holes if there is an excess of it. However, if you follow the instructions properly, the vest stays completely dry on the outside and does not leak.
Inuteq says that the vest should reduce your body temperature by upto 15 percent when compared to ambient temperatures. While we couldn’t put those numbers to the test, we can tell you that this is an effective solution for staying cooler in our riding weather, although it is a pricey one.
Where: www. pathpavers.in
Price: Rs 6,900