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The new feel-good factor

First Wellness Label awarded to Schneider Sportswear OHG

(PresseBox) (Bönnigheim, ) In September 2010, the Hohenstein Institute awarded its first Wellness Label, to Schneider Sportswear OHG in Albstadt. To mark the occasion, Silke Off, Head of the Laboratory for Clothing Physiology at the prestigious Hohenstein Institute, who played an important part in designing, developing and introducing the label, personally presented the senior management of the company with the label to use on their products.

Tested wellness textiles

People want to feel comfortable in their clothes. Especially for leisure activities and sport, but also just for relaxing on the sofa at home, there is a big demand for "feel-good" textiles.

They should be as comfortable as possible, soft and supple, skin-friendly and breathable.

They should also be high-quality garments which do not lose either their colour or their shape, even after being washed many times. Now, thanks to the new Wellness Label from the Hohenstein Institute, consumers can look specifically for "Tested wellness textiles" which are particularly comfortable to wear and are also easy to look after . The concept of wellness textiles is not confined to traditional leisure and wellness clothing but could also apply to articles such as dressing-gowns or towels. The new label from the Hohenstein Institute makes it possible for textile products to be objectively measured for their suitability for wellness purposes and means that shoppers can also regard certified products as being of higher quality, because of the extensive testing they have undergone. For sellers, the label is a perfect selling point when they are advising their customers.

Before a textile product can become a "Tested wellness textile", it must go through a specially developed programme of tests at the independent Hohenstein Institute. For this, appropriate measuring instruments are used to test textile products against defined criteria and assess them. If they are suitable to be classed as tested wellness textiles according to the current guidelines, this is confirmed.

Tested wellness textiles - comfortable and easy to look after

How comfortable a textile product is to wear is largely determined by its skin sensory properties. This is the term used to describe the immediate "touch sensation" that the product makes on the skin. Five different measurements are taken in order to quantify objectively how a textile product feels to people when it is in direct contact with their skin.

The surface finish index states whether the product scratches the skin or feels nice and soft.

The sticking index shows how much a textile product sticks to damp skin and consequently feels uncomfortable. The wetting index provides information about how quickly moisture is absorbed by the textile product when you sweat and so is carried away from the skin. The number of contact points between the textile and the skin is used to measure how quickly the textile starts to feel clammy and damp. The stiffness measurement is important for how well the textile product fits your body and can be an indication of how comfortable in general the garment seems to the wearer. The breathability of the textile is also measured. Taking all the measurements together, the level of skin sensory comfort is calculated and the skin sensory properties of the textile product that is being tested are judged against defined limit values.

As well as the skin sensory properties, the ease of care of textile products is also tested, with regard to their colourfastness under ISO 105-B02, their dimensional stability after 20 washes and their general resistance to washing. If the textile product that is being tested meets all the target specifications, it is endorsed with the Wellness Label.

Schneider Sportswear OHG - Wellness made to measure

Wellness, comfort and quality are also top priorities for Schneider Sportswear OHG in Albstadt. Silke Off explains: "This company, which sets such high standards for its products, is tailor-made to launch the new Wellness Label. During its development phase, both sides benefited from our close cooperation." Schneider Sportswear OHG operates in the clothing segment of sports textiles which is mainly dominated by the world-famous brand names of the big, powerful global players. Rather than making products for top athletes, this traditional company makes high-quality sportswear for people of all ages who take an active approach to life. Annette Kemmler, Managing Director of Schneider Sportswear OHG, emphasises: "We want to offer the best possible wellness clothing for people who have found their own, individual interpretation of sport and fitness as part of their personal lifestyle. For us, it's enormously important that our products meet all the highest specifications for quality and fit." Indeed, with its unique selling point of a "Sizing service", which guarantees a perfect fit by means of a clever system of colours and numbers, the company's strategy is to produce consumer-oriented collections for customers in Germanspeaking countries. What is extremely important here is that the company develops its own materials, always with a view to the design and function of the products in question. Knitted goods are entirely manufactured to the highest quality standards in the new knitting and technology centre in Albstadt-Pfeffingen which went into operation in 2009. The latest knitting machines - with, as part of a pilot project, extra fluff extractors in the room - optimised knitting conditions and EDP-controlled processes all ensure maximum production efficiency. Schneider Sportswear OHG currently employs 60 people in Albstadt-Pfeffingen and a further 180 garment-makers in Eastern Europe, 80 of them at its own plant in Bulgaria.

Schneider Sportswear OHG
- Founded in 1926 as the Schneider Brothers Knitwear Factory
- In 1960, Dieter Schneider, son of the company founder Hans Schneider, takes
over as sole managing director
- Over the next few years, production moves from underwear to track suits
- Since 1999, Dieter Schneider's daughters Eva Schneider and Annette Kemmler
have worked alongside him as managing directors
- In 2001, a new logo was introduced, "Schneider Sportswear"
- There are currently 60 employees in Albstadt-Pfeffingen and a further 180 in
Eastern Europe, 80 of them at the company's own plant in Bulgaria
- In 2009, annual turnover reached approx. 15 million euros with 15% of that
coming from abroad
- The company exports to Austria, Switzerland and the Benelux countries
- It launches two collections a year
- The clothes are mainly sold through department stores, by mail order and
through the Intersport marketing group

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