Several weeks ago, the folks over at Elite Hockey sent Hockey World Blog basically their entire catalog of base layer clothing, which includes a variety of compression and loose-fit shirts, pants and shorts in several different styles. The members of Hockey World Blog split up the clothing, choosing each a top and a bottom to review. This review will cover the Elite Hockey Pro Vent Loose Long Sleeve Top.
Product: Pro Vent Loose Long Sleeve Top
Color: Black / Black
Design and Construction:
Elite Hockey’s Pro Vent Loose Long Sleeve Top combined both Elite Hockey’s Pro Vent technology with the natural properties of bamboo.
The Pro Vent technology aims to provide increased airflow, wick moisture away, all with a light weight and flexible shirt.
While not a scientist by any means, bamboo in clothing is a unique topic to tackle. Naturally, bamboo is a sustainable resource that grows quite quickly, and minimizes CO2 and generates more oxygen than trees. With increased deforestation, this is in a nutshell, more bang for your buck. In essence, companies that use bamboo are helping the environment.
Bamboo can be made into fibre in a green friendly way by crushing the woody parts of the bamboo plant and then use natural enzymes to break the bamboo walls into a mushy mass so that the natural fibers can be mechanically combed out and spun into yarn. Elite Hockey uses bamboo that provides durability as well as a soft feel, all while positively impacting the environment. The shirt also provides hypoallergenic, antibacterial and anti-fungal properties.
Visually, the black on black shirt has Elite Hockey’s crest in the center of the chest, as well as Elite written in bold down the left arm and on the back of the neck, all of which are in silver.
Before receiving the shirt I did not know what to expect. I worried that the shirt would be too big in the arms, or worse, baggy throughout that it would feel like I was swimming. Instead, I was pleasantly surprised to find that the shirt fits quite comfortably.
The sleeves of the arms fit properly to the wrist, avoiding any discomfort by getting tangled with my gloves. The shirt is made of two different fabrics where the arms meet the torso, allowing for a better range of motion. What I am most impressed with is the fit throughout midsection. They call it a beer league for a reason, and right now, I have myself a spare tire. I was previously wearing a compression shirt, and unless you are quite trim, they never seem to fit just right. They tend to grip your love handles to the point of restriction. Furthermore, the compression would roll up during games, making for constantly having to pull it back down into place. The Pro Vent loose long sleeve top was just the opposite as it covered the midsection entirely and hanged without any restriction.
For me, a shirts performance is how well it feels. The bamboo fibers make for an almost silky feel that feels nice absolutely nice to the touch. I can even see myself wearing this shirt at night to bed it is so soft. From there, you have to take into consideration breathability. The material is extremely breathable, and where the arms meet the torso, the fabrics is of an almost mesh like fabric, allowing for even more air to circulate near the armpits. Next, you consider moisture wicking. When you skate, you sweat, and you want that sweat off of you. Due to the style being a loose fit, the shirt does not make as much contact with your skin, disallowing it to fully push sweat away. It still does push moisture away quite well, but if this is your primary reason for a base layer, a compression fit would better suit you. Lastly, you consider how well are you doing away with that infamous hockey stench. While I am a player who washes such a shirt after every use, I can easily see this being able to be thrown in the bag and forgotten about until the next game without any stench whatsoever.
Everyone has played with a white undershirt under their jersey and most everyone has used a compression shirt under their jersey at another point in time. If you combined the comfort and feel of a white undershirt with the softness, durability and the moisture wicking of a compression shirt, this leaves you with the Elite Hockey Pro Vent Loose Long Sleeve Top. The moisture wicking could be better, to the point that at an end of a long skate you do feel a bit chilled, but the fit and feel greatly outweighs this. If you don’t sport a six pack and you are looking for nice fitting, durable option, this would be the shirt to get. Factor in that the use of bamboo is good for the environment, you can feel good about it too.