In development for four years, the uniforms were the result of extensive research: a team of 54 designers scanned hundreds of feet to become familiar with Chinese foot morphology, studied common injuries in Olympic sports and interviewed athletes about their equipment preferences and dislikes.
Even the uniform color was tested under TV and stadium lighting to ensure it matched the country’s flag. Graphics include a rendering of a talisman associated with the soldiers buried alongside the emperor who unified China, Qin Shi Huangdi. Two symbols from the Chinese national anthem, “Arise” and “March On,” have been placed on the inside of the uniform, near the heart, only for the athletes’ eyes.
Uniform designs range from running to boxing and kayaking.