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Taking out the wheelie bin

Innovation

SOCCER player Nik Kuzman grew so tired of climbing in an out of large garbage cans full of ice to aid his recovery after matches, he started his own company with his wife Danielle.

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Two years later the Kuzmans’ ice bath business has gone international.

Danielle Kuzman said her husband regularly took ice baths in an Australian “wheelie bin” or an old chemical drum at his club Adelaide Raiders in South Australia after games, particularly towards the end of his career.

People are using the dangerous options of the bins and the barrels … we just really wanted to provide a safe and practical approach

“He’d hop on the chair to get in and kind of wriggle his way out and he’s six feet four so that’s not really a particularly easy or safe thing to do,” she said.

“So he did a Google search and only found inflatable or retractable models which weren’t what he was after and basically we realised there was nothing on the market in that specific plastic area.”

After 12 months of research, design and developing a wooden prototype in Adelaide, the Kuzmans found a company in Victoria to manufacture the polyethylene plastic baths.

Pride on the Line, based in South Australia, launched in late 2014 with two models of ice baths, a small size for 1-3 occupants and a duo for 2-6 athletes.

In the 12 months since, the Kuzmans have sold more than 100 baths to gyms and sporting clubs across Australia, including A-League clubs Perth Glory and Adelaide United, National Rugby League club Melbourne Storm and Australian Footbal League club Adelaide Crows.

The compact recovery bath sells for AUD $1499 while its larger counterpart is $2499. Baths can be ordered in team colours and include club logos in the design.

Danielle, who has a background in medical science, said the company had recently taken orders from the United States and Europe and had fielded inquiries from New Zealand, South Africa and the United Kingdom.

“Social media has been so effective for us because it’s got such a long reach,” Danielle said.

“The biggest challenge is just getting the product out there and letting people know that we exist because people are using the dangerous options of the bins and the barrels … we just really wanted to provide a safe and practical approach.”

According to BCC Research, the global sports medicine market totalled US$31.1 billion in 2014. The market is expected to reach $43.3 billion by 2019.

Danielle said rising awareness among athletes about ways to improve performance and recovery even at a local club level was driving growth.

“There are so many different products being developed and so many different companies so it is getting more competitive,” she said.

The Kuzmans are refining their ice baths and developing new sports recovery products, which they hope to launch in the coming months.

This is a Creative Commons story from The Lead South Australia, a news service providing stories about innovation in South Australia. Please feel free to use the story in any form of media. The story sources are linked in with the copy and all contacts are willing to talk further about the story.

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