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Spark Innovations, a Canadian company, has collaborated with the Sikh Motorcycle Club in Canada to introduce a new, stylish headgear that provides protection to Sikh bikers. The turban has three layers of protection, including a non-Newtonian foam to absorb impact, 3D-printed plastic, and Dyneema fabric known for its durability in outdoor equipment such as backpacks, sailing gear, and inflatables.

Inspiration behind this new-age headgear 

The design was inspired by the chainmail, a type of armour consisting of small metal rings linked together in a pattern to form a mesh, worn by Sikh warriors under their turbans during the war. The headgear can be wrapped around the head like a regular turban but has the safety features of a traditional open-face helmet.

What is a turban?

Turban or dastar is a form of headdress linked with Sikhism and an important aspect of Sikh culture. The word "dastar" is derived from Persian and borrowed from Punjabi. The Persian word "dastar" can apply to any type of turban, replacing the old word for turban, "dolband," from which the English word "turban" derives.

The dastar is religious and culturally significant to Sikhs because it signifies qualities such as equality, honour, self-respect, courage, spirituality, and piety. It is regarded as an article of faith by Sikhs.

Accessible to all

This design is "open-source," meaning that anyone can access and replicate the product by downloading the blueprint. This innovation could have a significant impact, especially in India where Sikh riders are exempt from wearing helmets. However, to sell in the open market in India, the headgear must be certified by the ISI. Thankfully, local manufacturers can recreate the product to meet these regulations because of the open-source design.

 

*Based on an article published in MoneyControl on 6th July 2021

 

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