We saw a need for something different...
At XSportsProtective, we want you to be protected while you snowboard, ski, skate, bike, or derby - whether you are brand new or a seasoned pro. But we also know that you need to be comfortable. No matter how protective the gear is, if it isn't comfortable, it isn't likely to be worn for very long. Comfort means: light weight, low profile, nice materials, and pads designed to move with you.
As we looked at all the products available on the market, we saw a gap. We wanted padded shorts and body armor that would be:
- low profile
- light weight
- comfortable to wear
- had nice materials
- allowed for a full range of movement
- protected you where (and when) it counts, and
- at a reasonable and competitive price point
And, oh-by-the-way, we felt very strongly that we wanted to produce the gear domestically. We wanted to challenge ourselves - and the market - that we could create this brand and make the gear in the U.S. That meant we'd be competing against the entire marketplace, which produces and imports from abroad. It was a pretty aggressive goal and we had no idea if it could
be done, let alone if it should be done. It was quite a tall order.
XSportsProtective and Crash Pads: A unique collaboration
When we thought about our vision for this new brand, we knew exactly who we wanted to share it with. Since 2004, we've had a close relationship with one of the top brands in this space - Crash Pads. Crash Pads, owned and operated out of Oregon, produces some of the finest technical padded shorts and body armor on the market. And Crash Pads designs and manufactures their gear right in Oregon, employing designers and seamstresses in their factory in Beaverton, OR.
After describing our vision for this new line of protective gear to Crash Pads, we knew we had found the ideal partners. Although we all knew at the time that the vision for this new brand was audacious, we all shared the will to prove it could be done.
Then the (really) hard work began...
Throughout all of 2011, the two companies worked together to conceptualize, design, and build this new line of protective gear called "Vigilante". Both XSports and Crash Pads spent a great deal of time carefully developing six totally new and unique pieces of protective gear. We designed and built upper body armor for both men and women, technical padded shorts for both men and women, and light weight padded shorts for both men and women.
In each case, we spent months designing, arguing, obsessing, and eventually deciding on hundreds of details about what fabrics to use and where, what pads to use and where, how to build critical areas of the gear, and what the best way to build the jackets and shorts would be. Throughout it all, we had to stay focused on delivering what we promised at a competitive price.
We simply built better protective gear
For example, we know that most padded shorts and body armor has a tendency to awkwardly bend and contort when you move. It's uncomfortable, it inhibits your range of motion, and it can cause the protective pads to move out of place causing critical areas to be exposed during a crash!
So, using human anatomy and kinesiology, we created very specific pad shapes and configurations to match how your body moves. Not only does this make the Vigilante padded shorts and body armor more comfortable, but also makes sure they don't restrict your movement at all AND stay in the right place when you fall.
Minimalist design philosophy
We deliberately designed the Vigilante line to reflect a minimalist philosophy--i.e., every single pad, thread, seam, etc. on the Vigilante padded shorts and jackets are there for a specific reason. No added bling, no non-functional pads, no oversized caps that don't add protection. Nope. We were very focused - only what is absolutely necessary will go into the product. Nothing more, nothing less. Not only did this keep our cost down, but even better, it made the padded shorts and jackets slim, super light weight, and incredibly flexible.
At the end of the day...
We are extremely proud of the Vigilante line of padded shorts and protective jackets. Yes, they're nice to look at. We LOVE that part about them! But body armor and padded shorts aren't meant to be looked at - they're meant to be worn. What we're most proud of, and what you'll appreciate after you wear your new Vigilante body armor and padded shorts, is that they're so comfortable you'll forget you’re wearing protective gear.
We are proud to tell you our story and share this new line of protective gear with you. We think we accomplished our goal. Wear a piece of Vigilante protective gear, and you'll see that it is:
- low profile
- light weight
- comfortable to wear
- has nice materials
- allows for a full range of movement
- protects you where (and when) it counts, and
- is at a reasonable and competitive price point
And, we make it right here in the U.S.A.
The Teams at XSports and Crash Pads