The Mad Science behind the Inertia X Frame: The pressure point body map, anatomical neutrality, and the loft pocket epiphany. The Mantra: Challenge Everything about camping pad design.
The Inertia X Frame was Klymit’s first entry into the camping pad market in Summer 2010. Subsequently, it has won just about every innovation award out there, and is still amazing adventurers with its comfort and incredible specs. There is nothing out there that offers comparable comfort at a comparable weight. Standing as a landmark of technical design, comfort was achieved with Klymit’s unique and patented pressure point body map.
We noticed that if you lie down on the floor or a flat surface on your back, you will notice that your body only touches the ground in 5 places; your head, shoulders, glutes, calves and feet. Roll on your side, and you will notice those pressure points do not change. We simply support the pressure points of your body with luxurious contact points that you can set at your perfect pressure preference, and then remove the rest of the unnecessary material.
With 1-2 breaths you can have a soft surface that wraps around your pressure points but keeps you off of the ground, or you can bring the included bulb pump, to provide a flat, solid surface for your pressure points to lie easily on top of. At night, when the volume of the pad decreases due to tempering, the user can simply reach up and add a couple pumps to restore their pad to its preferred volume and firmness, all while staying comfortably tucked in.
We aren’t dumb here at Klymit, but we sometimes lack foresight….ok, sometimes we are a little dumb. We thought, as everyone else who has seen loft pockets in our sleeping pads for the first time, were going to be cold spots. We initially thought that the Inertia X Frame would be a mostly summer pad. As some of the greatest discoveries of science are happy accidents…we were very wrong.
Our nights testing various configurations of the X frame were down right toasty. We could not figure out why we could be sleeping on something so fluted, yet be so warm. Then, it hit us. We realized that the negative space was allowing our sleeping bag to loft down, and that we were capturing the warmth of our sleeping bag underneath us for the first time! This simply does not happen in product development. Lighter, more compact, more comfortable, more durable, AND WARMER! They also allow the X Frame to be the only breathable pad for those hot jungle or desert nights…No sweaty back!!! Our next call was to our legal team to get loft pockets patented.
Among the more impressive aspects of the Inertia X Frame is in its anatomical support and neutrality. A couple of us at Klymit are adventure racers, speed hikers, trail runners, and bike packers. Straight up, WE GO HARD, and suffer the joint pain, IT band issues, and other various blisters, abrasions, and little twinges and niggles that come with the territory.
Coincidental with our realization that the body only touches a flat surface in 5 places, we also noticed that most camping pads’ lack of support CHANGED the orientation of those 5 parts of the body that needed support. On most camping pads the back becomes arched with air pressure, and you end up with your legs higher than your head and back because your head and shoulders are heavier, and the pad is inadequate at keeping the air pressure under your pressure points. This takes you out of your natural alignment, puts pressure on your lower back, puts pressure on your pira formis, and contributes to pain, discomfort, and for the athlete, the dreaded IT band syndrome!
The X Frame focuses all air pressure right to wear you need it, your pressure points. It removes all pressure from the rest of your body, and allows your body to lie neutrally on the pad. We have people with back problems that put it under the sheets on their bed, and some with chronic issues that say those issues go away with the X Frame. For the adventurer it gives you the best chance at not only a good night’s sleep, but for your body to be rested, recovered and ready for the next epic day.
The book of camping pads began to be rewritten here. The conventional approach to thermodynamics, efficiency of materials, advanced design, body support, weld shape, weld thickness, and even material selection has entered a new chapter, even for our competitors, and catalyzed by the X Frame.
A true contribution to the evolution of a category gives us affirmation. Yet we have learned much since the X Frame, and have further aspirations we hope will bring a similar smile to the face of adventure.