Athlete’s headgear is designed to absorb impact, unfortunately for those athletes with hearing implants it also absorbs the vibrations that carry sound to the hearing implant.
That’s why Colgate and VMLY&R have partnered with Steeden, a sports equipment manufacturing company, to develop 'Hear Gear', a protective headgear designed specifically for Deaf and hard of hearing and rolled out to Australian Rules Football (AFL) players. The innovative technology bulit in Hear Gear accommodates and channels sound towards an individual’s hearing implant, creating a more equitable environment for sound-impaired athletes.
The innovative design features a new mould with specially engineered padding that accommodates and channels sound to the hearing implant. The lines on Hear Gear represent sound that is now being effectively channelled towards the ear.
Colgate's commitment to inclusivity is further demonstrated through their funding of the first production run of Hear Gear headgear via Steeden, the exclusive owners of the design. By doing so, the brand is ensuring that all players with hearing impairments have access to the same level of protection and opportunities as their teammates.
“Colgate believes that everyone deserves a future to smile about”, said Anthony Crewes, Marketing Director, Colgate-Palmolive ANZ. “The Hear Gear project, is a truly meaningful expression of our ‘Smile Strong’ platform.
“We are so fortunate to work with a brand that doesn’t just talk about optimism, they do things in the real world to create it”, said Paul Nagy, CCO VMLY&R AUNZ. “Colgate are a truly connected brand having a positive impact. Hear Gear is a simple tool that give everyone the ability to enjoy sport just like everybody else, and I’m proud to have been a part of it.”