France's Teddy Riner has won five medals in judo across four Olympic Games ©Getty Images

French judo legend Teddy Riner has co-founded a new textile brand named Fightart, offering martial arts outfits, body protection, training accessories and a technical and leisure range.

Riner took his Olympic medal haul up to five at Tokyo 2020 with a mixed team gold and men's over-100 kilograms bronze, following up back-to-back triumphs in the individual event at London 2012 and Rio 2016.

His first medal at the Games came courtesy of a bronze in the over-100kg category at Beijing 2008.

Riner has also won 10 gold medals at the World Judo Championships.

He has co-founded Fightart with former gymnast Nicolas Poy-Tardieu.

Fightart's products meet specifications imposed by international bodies, and Riner explained how the idea came about.

"The brand was born from a simple observation," he said.

"In the world of combat sports and martial arts, there was a real opportunity to create a beautiful brand, engaging and stylish, meeting the expectations of all practitioners, whether they are neophytes or experts.

"The idea was to create a brand that could be a real performance tool, whatever the level of practice and to deliver accessible products, with an aesthetic touch that is very different from anything you could find on the market before now."

Riner underlined the importance of environmental sustainability to Fightart.

Teddy Riner of France has launched a new textile brand named Fightart ©Getty Images
Teddy Riner of France has launched a new textile brand named Fightart ©Getty Images

"We are also the first brand dedicated to martial arts that will offer articles with a real conscience and a strong environmental commitment," he reflected.

"Most plastic packaging bags end up in the rubbish.

"They are shredded and then diluted into micro particles before ending up in rivers and then the ocean.

"This is a source of pollution that is no longer tolerable today.

"If they are burned, their carbon footprint is considerable.

"My brand is young, new and innovative.

"We had to lead by example, to raise awareness among as many people as possible through concrete actions.

"I am a father and I want to act for my children.

"Our first action is therefore to offer non-polluting, compostable, biodegradable or recycled bags.

"At Fightart, we are proud to have eliminated 98 per cent of all our plastic packaging even though eco-responsible packaging costs 12 to 14 times more than plastic bags, but the health of the planet is priceless."

Products are manufactured primarily in Pakistan, China and Taiwan in "ethical and responsible factories that are audited."

It is hoped that Fightart's products will be available in more than 20 European countries.