The Scottish invention that provides a simple on-the-move hydration solution for walkers, runners, cyclists and climbers.
I donâ€™t always carry water with me on a run of up to an hour, but I usually regret it if I don’t. The problem is that I find most hand-held water bottles to be a hassle.
When cycling I carry water in a bottle placed in a bottle cage but not all my bikes have a bottle cage. For example, I donâ€™t want to add weight to my Planet X time trial bike so I havenâ€™t even fixed a bottle cage to this bike.
Now there is a clever solution to the hydration woes of people who exercise, whether walking, running, cycling or climbing, for up to an hour. And it was invented by two Scottish women, Christine Manson and Belinda Goldsmith.
In fact, Christine had her eureka moment for FitSip while running in the Pentland Hills, near Edinburgh. She was wearing a wristband that had a little pocket for keys but what she really wanted it to contain was water.Â No bottles or belts, just a little sip of water that would be enough to keep her mouth moistened while out on her run.
Fast forward through several years of ergonomic design evolution and intensive testing with leading sports science centres, athletes and running clubs, and FitSipÂ® is now available to runners and other sports people.
What is FitSip?
FitSip combines a sports armband, inner waterpod and soft feel-bite valve for an easy-to-use, hands-free hydration pack thatâ€™s perfect for runners. So says the website! Â The performance sports armband is made from stretch-cool airprene with a hi-visibility safety strip and adjustable comfort-strap.Â Itâ€™s designed for up to an hour of exercise and lets you sip as you run, walk, cycle or climb.
There are two versions, the original FitSip Extreme and now the FitSip Pro-Lite.
Testing the FitSip
Wearing the FitSip on my arm felt a bit odd to start with and I found that I prefer to wear it over a long sleeved top but after about five minutes of running I forgot that it was there. It can be adjusted to fit most arms, even my skinny version, and if you secure it tightly enough it doesnâ€™t move around.
I tested the FitSip Extreme version in warmer weather and I did find it a bit sweaty against my skin so I prefer the FitSip Pro-Lite because it is lighter to wear and doesnâ€™t make my arm sweat so much.
Filling the small hydration pod with water is straightforward and you simply zip this in place in the armband. The water does â€œjostleâ€ about a bit but, again, you quickly forget about this.
Taking a sip of water is easy. Simply raise your arm to your mouth and suck on the soft valve.
One of my testers tried the FitSip Extreme and reported that he found it tricky to use the valve on his first attempts but with practice he was able to sip while running.
You do need to sip and take a breath and if youâ€™re running hard this isnâ€™t easy but I would say that most runners would slow down a bit â€“ and possibly stop â€“ to drink from a bottle so I donâ€™t think this can be criticised. It’s easy enough to slow to a jog, take a sip and then run on.
I really liked the FitSip while cycling and walking. If youâ€™re looking for a quick sip of water it is convenient to have the FitSip attached to your arm. It means that you do not need to bother with a larger water bottle or a rucksack.
Prices for the FitSip Extreme and FitSip Pro-Lite start from Â£21.99. See www.fitsip.com