Vacuum effect and 3D polymers? What sounds like rocket science from NASA actually refers to cycling gloves from Italian manufacturer Prologo. We tested the Energrip gloves from Prologo with touch function and tell you how they perform on the trail.
Sweaty hands in the summer heat, scraped palms after a fall and annoying slipping back and forth on the handles – at least one of these scenarios has probably annoyed all of us. Italian manufacturer Prologo claim to have the solution and introduce their Prologo Energrip gloves, designed for summer and transitional seasons. The Italian company’s portfolio includes gloves, matching grips, saddles and various other cycling accessories. On the website, the gloves may not look much different from other manufacturers’ products, but appearances can be deceptive. Featuring patented CPC (Connect Power Control) technology, these gloves stand out from the crowd by providing a unique grip through special polymers. Consisting of thousands of tiny 3D printed rubber cones, each less than a millimetre in diameter, they sit on the palm of the hand and compress under pressure to effectively absorb impact. The small suction cups adhere to the grips, creating numerous small negative pressures, which Prologo refer to as the “vacuum effect”. Made from polyester, terylene and elastane, the gloves weigh 49 g and are available in sizes XS-XL. In terms of design, Prologo only offer the gloves in a black version with the company’s “Q” logo on the back of the hand. The long finger gloves cost € 77.05 and the matching short finger version is available from € 67.31.
What are the Prologo Energrip gloves designed for?
At first glance, the design bears a strong resemblance to Iron Man’s superhero gloves. According to the manufacturer, the circular polymer surfaces that extend outwards are designed to provide superior grip compared to conventional cycling gloves by creating small areas of negative pressure between the grip and the glove. The patented technology is also said to absorb shock and vibration, thereby reducing muscle fatigue. The space and geometry of the 3D cones help to minimise heat and perspiration, allowing better air circulation. The choice of a thin material on the outside of the gloves also ensures good ventilation, interacting with the cooling channels on the inside. Prologo also state that the temperature of the hands remains constant in both cold and hot conditions thanks to the polyester mesh. Because of the special technology and the way the gloves are designed, you should also still be able to use the touch function on your mobile phone. These claims sound promising, but how do the Prologo Energrip gloves perform on the trail?
Riding pleasure in the palm of your hand – Impressions of the Prologo Energrip
The materials used make the Prologo Energrip gloves extremely comfortable to wear, and the thin fabric on the back of the hand promotes air circulation. In addition, cooling channels on the palms contribute to effective ventilation. However, these gloves are best suited to summer and transitional conditions and should not be used on rides where temperatures drop down below 10°C (50°F). Beyond this point, the thin insulation may not provide adequate protection from the cold, resulting in chilly fingers on longer rides. For winter temperatures, thicker gloves are recommended.
The gloves give you plenty of grip and it’s as easy to operate the gears, seat post and brakes as if you weren’t wearing any gloves at all. The stretchy fabric allows your fingers to move freely and even gives you a better grip on the brake lever and seat post remote. You can still use the touch function on your mobile phone thanks to the rubber pads on your thumb and index finger. However, using your other fingers to operate the phone is a little trickier due to the lack of rubber pads. We were surprised by the robustness of the polymers, despite their fragile and delicate appearance, they showed minimal wear after months of testing. Nice!
However, there are aspects that could be improved. A lot of dirt on the gloves, as can easily happen in muddy conditions, doesn’t affect the riding experience too much, but it does reduce grip. Once dirt has accumulated in the fine polymers, the only way to get rid of it is to wash them thoroughly. Be careful about the temperature of the wash though, to avoid unnecessary damage to the rubber cones.
Tuning-Tipp: To get the most out of the grip of the 3D polymers, Prologo Energrip long finger gloves should be washed regularly.
Smart design or dirty reality? – Conclusion on the Prologo Energrip
The technological approach of the Italians pays off, as the performance of the Prologo Energrip gloves leaves little to be desired. The robust, well-ventilated technology is more suitable for warm summer days than muddy adventures. Even though the gloves are a little more expensive than the competition, they are still within an acceptable price range.
- good grip
- allows use of touch function
- comfortable to wear
- good ventilation
- poor self-cleaning in muddy conditions
For more information visit Prologo.it
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Words: Benedikt Schmidt Photos: Antonia Feder