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Why ergonomics and mobility are essential for protection

At Dyneema®, we understand that soldiers, law enforcement officers, and first responders need more than just protection against immediate threats. After all, they do some of the most physically demanding jobs around, requiring them to move swiftly, lift heavy loads, and act decisively – often in unpredictable environments and for long periods of time.

In roles like these, operators need robust armor that’s easy to wear – and that’s where Dyneema® checks all the right boxes. With its exceptional strength-to-weight ratio, Dyneema® enables the creation of lightweight body armor that doesn’t compromise between protection and wearability. And that combination is saving lives around the world.

Lighter armor strengthens mission performance

Military research shows that increased weight from heavy loads negatively affects soldier performance, whether through reduced tactical and cognitive performance or increased rates of fatigue and injuries.

With lighter, more ergonomic armor, personnel can move faster, think more clearly, and even carry additional life-saving equipment – all of which have a positive impact on mission success and survivability. 

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Comfortable armor stays on

Body armor is only effective when people wear it – and keep wearing it. In fact, our most recent survey of US police officers found that comfort is their most important consideration in selecting body armor.

Officers’ body armor priorities:
• Comfort – 74% of respondents
• Protection – 57% of respondents
• Fit – 42% of respondents

In the same survey, 46% of officers said lack of comfort was a key reason for removing their body armor on the job, with only extreme heat (76%) considered more likely to cause removal. Female respondents, meanwhile, emphasized the importance of lightweighting, flexibility, and a unique design for female bodies when assessing the value of body armor.

Officers need to feel comfortable wearing their life-saving gear in any conditions, which means they need solutions that enable maximum strength with minimum weight. Plus, they need the flexibility – and the thermal management – to do their duty effectively, whatever the weather.

Enjoy maximum lightweight comfort with Dyneema® UD

Dyneema® opens to the door to various kinds of protective armor – and in every case, we recognize that comfort and survivability go hand in hand.

From soft armor vests to ballistic helmets, inserts, plates, and shields, mobility and long-term wearability are always key features of protective articles made with Dyneema® unidirectional (UD) material.

Our secret? The unique properties of Dyneema®, a fiber light enough to float on water while being 15 times stronger than steel. Harnessing these inherent characteristics, we help manufacturers create lightweight body armor that increases comfort, lowers stress, reduces material usage, prevents health issues, and enhances situational awareness.

What’s more, lightweighting improves survivability as it allows vests to be designed with protection across a greater area of the torso.

Dyneema® delivers all these benefits without ever sacrificing on protection; in fact, it outperforms all competitive materials in ballistic stopping power. The net result is armor that maximizes survivability from every angle, keeping users comfortable – and safe.

  • Flexibility, elasticity, and compressibility for extensive body motion adaptation

  • A larger protection area on the torso

  • Better body contour fits for both female and male soft armor vests

  • Air permeability, resulting in lower rates of heat stress

Contact our experts

Interested in learning more about Dyneema® for your project or end-use application? Reach out to our team of experts today.

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