Phillip Rosati Jr
VP-Sales, TAG Sports Gear

What role is player safety playing in the team sports business?
Play safety is going to continue to be a bigger issues and it will cause industry leaders to further advance technology in protective equipment and not continue to make the same old product.

What role can team dealers play?
Team dealers are the direct line to the end consumer. It is our job as manufacturers to educate the salespeople and give them all of the facts so when they are facing mom, dad, coach, or AD they are fully educated and can answer any questions. When manufacturers of equipment come out with something new and cutting-edge it gives the team dealer another reason to get in front of the coach, AD, or even parent.

How has the industry responded to the demand?
The industry itself has done a good job in increasing safety, but I feel some have done better than others. I can’t speak for anyone else’s strategies, but I can tell you TAG will always be at the forefront of technology. There are some companies out there still trying to push the same technology without truly making any real advances in technology.

Where does the category go from here?
The protectives category will continue to evolve in the future. What most of us remember as a traditional helmet, shoulder pad, girdle or thigh pad won’t be the same. It’s amazing to see how much they have changed and how exciting it is to think of what we can do to change the industry with more product advancements. A smarter consumer is better for your company --- instead of them buying a product solely on name, they see that the name doesn’t mean it’s the best.

How has your company addressed the issue?
We have addressed the emphasis on player safety by continuing research into the best possible materials we can build our products with. Our product managers’ first goal is always safety first --- we do not focus on price first. We build the product we would want our children to wear and feel comfortable with.

What’s new?
Our newest and most innovative product is out RIPT shoulder pad. We have used our pyramid impact dispersion technology and also used a new material for the shell of the pad.