Since 1972 Dainese has worked to ensure increasing safety in motorcycling and other dynamic sports. During its studies, it has learned that every element worn by a professional rider can offer greater protection if designed to work in synergy with other parts. Tests in the wind tunnel to tune the helmet and hump are just the obvious example.
In developing its complete protection system, Dainese has dedicated the same attention to the foot and ankle area as it has to the rest of the body. In 1997, it presented a boot to be worn inside the suit for the first time, a solution never seen or conceived of by anybody up until that point.
But why complicate things and turn the concept of the boot on its head? Not for any aesthetic purpose, that's for sure. The boot has been studied for many years, its concentration of technology in no way inferior to that of any other item of professional riders' clothing. The benefits of the Dainese IN system are not predictable or trivial, but have to do with the search for perfection, for the best protection and performance that can be offered to the human body.
The difference between active and passive safety is a fundamental concept that is often overlooked. A traditional protector provides only passive safety, or rather protection against impact. But it does nothing to prevent such impacts from occurring. The ability to put a rider in a situation where injury can be avoided or limited is what we call active safety. And this is harder to achieve of course. Dainese, to reach this goal, focuses on some fundamental aspects: ergonomics, lightness and freedom of movement.
In the Dainese’s integrated system (suit-to-boot fastening system), the rider's suit and the Axial D1 boots are secured to each other through wide Velcro bands that keep the two garments firmly fastened to each other. The firmness of this fastening provides the joint with a level of security and stability that can’t be achieved with boots worn outside the suit. Integrating the boots with their Axial Distortion Control System into the suit limits ankle torsion and allows for unsurpassed riding precision. The suit and boots are designed and developed to be one, in order to provide riders with superior protection as compared to that of traditional systems.
As we've said, active safety is harder to achieve. Creating a solution that prevents any painful injuries requires a real propensity for innovation, as well as an ability to see beyond the boundaries of circumstance. And it was with this goal in mind that the IN solution and the whole Dainese protection system came into being.
Most boots on the market focus on captivating aesthetics, with fluorescent colors and large, clearly visible logos. Style can be judged subjectively, but one thing that is certain is that an external boot offers numerous protruding parts for any objects or bike parts that may hit it. Clasps, zips and various appendages are all components that protrude from the silhouette of the boot itself, components that we would not want to get caught on anything.
One of the objectives that Dainese wants to achieve by integrating suit and boots is to limit these risks as much as possible. Therefore, the suit-to-boot connection system boasts two main advantages:
The Dainese integrated system is designed to avoid such unpleasant occurrences as much as possible.
Already in the late 90s, Dainese was working to create a boot that could significantly reduce foot and ankle injuries. Those contributing to development included Olivier Jacque, 250 world champion in 2000. The Frenchman would often suffer from ankle problems and was among the first to feel the need for greater support in this area.
Suit-boot integration allows for a more lightweight and tapered combination. And the weight of a boot is a detail that counts far more than one might think. In developing the IN boot, Dainese created and brought into being a very lightweight piece of footwear. In limiting the weight a rider has at their extremities, the centrifugal force that the feet acquire during a fall is contained, particularly during a high side where the rider is thrown from the bike high into the air. And less centrifugal force means less speed, so a less violent impact against the ground, with all the benefits this brings. Moreover, we have to consider that lightweight boots mean less fatigue over long sessions on track.
"It is like wearing a pair of trainers"
This is why lightness at the extremities, whether the feet or hands, is of crucial importance when it comes to limiting the damage.
Wearing motorcycle boots outside, rather than inside, the suit pants makes the lower leg slimmer, which guarantees a gain in terms of aerodynamics as it will fit more easily into the bulk of the motorcycle frame. Furthermore, the attention to detail involved in making Dainese boots led to moving the fastening zipper to the back, a solution leading to a perfectly smooth inner side, for optimal contact with the motorcycle and a great feeling when riding.
The suit-boot integration system is an innovative solution introduced by Dainese more than 20 years ago. This union between the two pieces of a rider's equipment is one of the clearest examples of the synergy required when designing a complete protection system. It is not about garments simply being combined, but elements that give their best when integrated with each other. Only in this way is it possible to create an integrated safety system worth more than the sum of its individual parts.