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.
With the Dainese integrated system, the suit and boot are connected to each other with large Velcro areas that hold the garments firm. The solidity of this anchoring offers the joint great safety and stability, which cannot be achieved with an external boot. Integration between the boot, with its unique Axial Distortion Control System, and the suit limits any twisting of the ankle and allows for unbeatable riding precision. The suit and boots are designed and developed to act as one, providing the rider with greater protection with respect to traditional systems.
A boot that prevents accidents
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 Dainese aims in integrating the suit and boot is to avoid these risks. A suit that covers the boot eliminates the possibility of the footwear coming open when riding, regardless of whether there is a fall. The absence of any exposed clasps or zips translates into a very low probability of finding yourself caught on external objects, such as your own bike or that of other riders. The integrated Dainese system is designed to prevent the occurrence of any unpleasant events of this type.
How to reduce injuries? By reducing the speed of impact
Already in thelate 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.
Introducing maximum performance
The lower, slimmer part of the leg gains in terms of aerodynamics, in that it integrates more easily into the bulk of the bike fairing. The attention to detail shown with Dainese boots means that the fastening zip has been moved to the back. This solution allows for a totally smooth inner side, for optimum contact with the bike, which improves overall 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.