BY: ALYSSA MAHADEO
It’s already been a whole month into 2018, and the motivation that you felt to get into shape at the beginning of the year is probably starting to wear off. Making resolutions to get fit is a common occurrence with every new year, but only 8% of people actually keep their New Year’s resolutions, according to one commonly cited statistic.
However, with every new promise to get in shape, people are developing innovative ideas to make fitness fun, and easier to integrate into a busy schedule. What if every single movement you made could become strength training as well?
Born and raised in Jamaica, Lebert Veira was indoctrinated into the world of business through his grandparents who owned a few stories in the West Indies and were always teaching him how he could help out. As a young man, he learned the basic aspects of running a business, which lead him to further his business knowledge in college.
After college he worked at various jobs and companies eventually going back to Centennial College and becoming a coach for their basketball team “I had a great experience there, and I wanted to give back to the school, and the varsity basketball program which I had been a part of for four years prior to that,” Lebert explained.
Lebert didn’t believe that 65 was a real age for retirement, “I always knew that I wanted to work for myself, hire people and empower them, that’s why I took the path to studying business because it was the only way I could see myself being self-employed and be charged with my own destiny so to speak.”
During his time as a coach, he was able to assemble a really dynamic coaching staff to train the college athletes who went on to win the Ontario Championship twice as well as the Canadian National Championship for colleges, a massive accomplishment that hasn’t been done since.
“During that process and when I used to play, I used to work out with a weighted vest and it weighed 20 pounds,” Lebert shares. “It was a one size fits all, made of canvas and all the weights were bottom heavy, mostly placed in the bottom of the vest.”
It wasn’t the most versatile or practical use of the training vest concept and so Lebert set out to create a new vest he could use to help train the athletes, something that would complement natural movement, and was adjustable, with the ability to add and remove weight as needed.
In the beginning stages of vest creation, Lebert set out to find a fabric that was versatile enough to accommodate natural movement as well as keep the weights securely in place within the suit. His first prototype was created out of spandex which met a lot of his criteria but fell short with the added weights.
“Adding the weights to the spandex caused the elastic material to stretch out,” Lebert explains. “While it was form fitting and could be made in various sizes and complemented the body’s natural movements, the inability to properly accommodate additional weight was an issue.”
However, Lebert was not easily discouraged, heading back to the drawing board where he discovered Neoprene, a fabric most commonly used to make wetsuits for divers.
“The Neoprene is a rubber material, however, it doesn’t have very breathable channels due to the nature of its use in the deepest coldest parts of the ocean,” Lebert elaborates.
He still went ahead and created some prototypes out of the neoprene, first creating the vest and then deciding to make shorts as well so that athletes could do upper and lower body strength and agility training.
In this prototype, he was able to strategically place the weight pockets so they were distributed evenly across the vest and the shorts with the ability to change the intensity based on whichever row you chose to load good for a workout that could last between forty-five minutes to an hour.
While this concept made sense, it still wasn’t a perfect fit. The real problem became the breathability of the fabric to prevent overheating during longer training sessions.
“The next prototypes I made were from perforated neoprene, that had little pinholes in it to allow for more breathability,” Lebert says. “I started putting these pieces of equipment on various athletes, and strength and conditioning coaches and the feedback was really positive and overwhelming because they were getting really good results training with the suit.”
Lebert began getting orders for the suit from the Toronto Argonauts, track and field, martial arts and other various sports even aquatic fitness trainers. Using the momentum he gained from all of the orders he had he was determined to shift this from a hobby to becoming its own business.
He went to a sporting goods show in the US and the suit was nominated for Product of the Year and one of three finalists in that category. It brought a lot of notoriety to his booth, and seeing such a positive response from people who were at this tradeshow from around the world was very encouraging.
“While I was there a company approached me to tell me about a fabric that they had that was a lot more breathable than perforated neoprene,” Lebert shares. He took them up on their offer and got his hands on some sample fabric which he used to make a suit and it was perfect.
This new fabric was called Somatex Neoprene a high-performance fabric made from a lightweight, ultra-thin, non-porous polyester membrane that is weatherproof and highly breathable. Stomatex is the patented physics that replicates the way that the leaves of plants transpire.
“If you can image bubble wrap, each one of the domes is laid across the fabric like little bubbles, hollowed out on the underside with pinholes at the top of each bubble,” Lebert explains. “As the user moves it flattens and then pops back out in a pumping motion exhaling sweat, sweat vapor and inhaling air, keeping you in a thorough comfort zone so you won’t overheat and your core body temperature remains the same.”
Imagine if everything you did from household chores to sport-specific training became exponentially more productive toward improving your fitness and health. Wouldn’t that be a powerful and productive use of time?
The Power Suit is a way of changing the way people look at exercise. It was created with the user in mind and perfected so that not only athletes but even the average person can use it as a way to exercise just by throwing on the vest and shorts and going for a walk.
Aside from being used and praised by renowned athletes and coaches who have seen and testified to proven results, Lebert is working to focus on marketing the Power Suit for use on an international scale. So far the Power Suit has been able to help with weight loss, rehabilitation, aquatic fitness, the prevention of osteoporosis training to strengthening bone mass density, and even Autism where the weight of the vest is reminiscent of a mother’s warm and comforting hug.
The Power Suit can be worn for 24 hours at a time and is discreet enough to even be worn under your own clothes. More and more people have been reaping the benefits of using a Power Suit, wearing it while completing everyday tasks and chores, working to correct posture, burning calories, and strengthening the body to feel better over time.
“If you aren’t being challenged, you’re not thriving or growing,” Lebert shares. “I’m always working to improve the product to increase its versatility and the challenges I meet along the way are a confirmation that I’m moving in the right direction.”
The suit is priced affordably so that everyone is welcome to share in the benefits of a healthy active lifestyle. “We want people to get healthy and stay healthy, this could definitely reduce the burden on the healthcare system and we are working to prevent things before they happen.”