for spring, babolat’s peek-a-pattern

Maxime Chazal wears Babolat at Open 13 2013 tennis tournament

Babolat did a big push with their new Aeropro Drive racquet technology to start off 2013 (with a fun commercial called “Spin Attacks in the Dark” featuring Rafael Nadal and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga), but we’re a tad more into the what’s going on with their apparel. Their current performance line includes a stripe pattern hiding in the placket and the left underarm of their men’s polo, presented as a piping detail on their men’s shorts, and also appearing as accents on their women’s performance pieces.

Marseille: The stripes showed up on Frenchman Maxime Chazal in the qualifying draw of the Open 13 in Marseille, France. Chazal received a wildcard into qualifying but lost in the opening round to Sergiy Stakhovsky. In the main draw, the quarterfinals are being played out today.




(Photo Credit: Yohan Brandt for Open 13)

reebok launches new fitness-focused campaign

Reebok launches 2013 fitness-focused campaign

Reebok launched its new, fully-integrated marketing campaign, “Live With Fire,” continuing the global fitness brand’s mission to change how people perceive and experience fitness. With this campaign, Reebok shows how living an active lifestyle can inspire people to live their lives with passion, intent and purpose;and inspire others to do the same.

The 2013 “Live With Fire” campaign celebrates people whose lives have been transformed through their active lifestyle and in doing so unifies the brand’s marketing of its fitness and lifestyle business. In addition to featuring Reebok’s core pillars of Training and Running, the campaign reinforces Reebok’s commitment to women’s fitness through the introduction of its Dance and Yoga collections, as well as a renewed focus on Walking.

The campaign builds off the brand’s 2012 campaign, “The Sport of Fitness Has Arrived,” which featured CrossFit as a symbol of the rapidly changing fitness landscape. The campaign illustrated how CrossFit builds community and confidence and fosters a spirit of competition and camaraderie. With “Live With Fire,” Reebok is broadening this message and issuing an invitation to people to pursue their passions and to live life in a way that will inspire others to follow.

“At Reebok, our mission is to empower people to be fit for life, but we don’t want people to move for the sake of movement; we believe movement is the path to becoming physically, mentally and socially stronger,” said Matt O’Toole, Chief Marketing Officer, Reebok. “Since we’ve sharpened our focus on fitness, we’ve seen how reaching goals and accomplishing new feats changes people and their lives. We find our inspiration in these people, who live their lives with renewed passion and intensity, and affect others with their attitude. Among our employees and our consumers we’re building a community that pushes people to do and be more, and we want to inspire others to join this movement.”

Yan Martin, Vice President of Brand Marketing, said: “We offer a different perspective on a healthy lifestyle and creative expression. We’re not featuring the aspirational actions of today’s superstar millionaires in this campaign; we’re celebrating individuals who find purpose by pursuing their passions. We believe that everyone has the potential to transform their lives through fitness and creativity, and want to encourage this discovery, whether it’s through CrossFit or group training workouts, running clubs or Spartan races, high-energy Latin Dance classes or physically-challenging Yoga classes, intense fitness walks or another active pursuit.”

“Live With Fire”

The multi-channel campaign communicates “Live With Fire” through TV, print, digital and OOH media, as well as consumer events and activations. It will officially kick-off with a TV advertisement on February 15th on ESPN and will be supported with print and digital media.

The advertisement, available at, http://reesha.re/livewithfire, depicts seven inspirational stories: CrossFitters working to make sure every rep counts; a running club doing last man sprints; a Latin Dance class mastering a routine; two women catching the sunrise on an early morning walk; two men racing each other to the top of a stadium; a yoga class attempting a challenging inversion flow; a group pushing themselves to the limit at an early morning workout; and Spartan racers fighting to the finish.

The ‘heroes’ in each story embody what it truly means to “Live With Fire” as they meet and tackle different challenges and celebrate their achievements. Featured in the spot is yoga expert and Reebok ambassador, Tara Stiles, and Josh Bridges, runner up from the 2011 Reebok CrossFit Games – the world’s premier test to find the Fittest on Earth. In addition to these athletes, Reebok scouted CrossFitters, runners, dancers, yoga instructors, fitness walkers and an up-and-coming band, Driemanskap, for the TV, print and digital work. Rick Ross and Tyga are featured in new print and digital work to support Reebok Classics.

Specific “Live With Fire” creative executions will support Reebok’s key fitness products such as RealFlex and ZigTech; introduce Reebok’s new SubLite footwear and Reebok Δ Apparel; and showcase Reebok Women’s fitness, including the new Dance and Yoga collections. These elements, which include TV, print, digital and OOH media, continue the story of the launch spot highlighting the key usage and benefits of each product.

Following the launch of the TV campaign, Reebok will continue to inspire and demonstrate how to “Live With Fire” with the launch of the Reebok Fitness app. Designed to inject variety into stale workout programs, the Reebok Fitness app will help people rejuvenate tired fitness routines by creating new and varied workouts using a combination of popular disciplines: Walking, Running, Dance, Yoga and Training. The app will be available on Apple and Android devices as well as online.

A key component of the campaign is a digital consumer activation allowing people to be part of, and share in, Reebok’s “Live With Fire” mission. Last month, Reebok kicked off a worldwide competition in partnership with crowdsourcing agency, MOFILM, to identify young, talented filmmakers to create films that celebrate true stories of inspirational people who live every day with passion, intent and purpose. Reebok will use these stories and a social media-driven campaign to inspire people to share their own stories.

(via Footwear Business Update)

under armour’s first global marketing campaign will feature sloane stephens, among others

Under Armour logo - Global Campaign with Sloane Stephens

Under Armour announced on February 12 the launch of their first ever global marketing campaign, I WILL™. The campaign aims to highlight athletic passion and UA’s “commitment to engineering innovative products that provide real performance advantages.” At the event the brand unveiled the campaign’s principal creative spot featuring Canelo Alvarez, boxing’s welterweight World Champion; Sloane Stephens; Bryce Harper, the reigning National League Rookie of the Year; and Kemba Walker, who is currently leading his NBA team in points, assists and steals per game. The minute-long ad shows the athletes in their authentic training environment wearing Under Armour products.

“Ten years ago Under Armour became a household name when the brand asked athletes everywhere to ‘Protect this House.’ The response in the iconic commercial, and throughout the years, has been the same: I WILL,” said UA CEO and Founder Kevin Plank. “Today, Under Armour inspires the next generation of athletes to unleash their inner resolve and our I WILL trademark confirms our promise to continuously redefine the future of performance through innovation that will help give athletes an edge.”



The campaign launched Tuesday globally online (watch it above) and debuts on television in the US on Saturday, February 16, during NBA All-Star Weekend (TNT). The spot will also air on multiple networks including ESPN and MTV. Other elements include digital, OOH, grassroots, international extensions, a social competition and a new microsite, IWILL.ua.com launching on February 15, 2013.

The brand also showcased its Armour39 system – a digital performance monitoring system which helps improve training, scheduled for a March 2013 launch. The system provides a single score WILLpower measurement that reflects an individual’s overall effort during a workout session and also tracks heart rate, calories burned, and intensity. Designed to seamlessly integrate into any workout, Armour39 allows athletes to uncover precise information about their training and athletic potential.

Sloane in Doha: Stephens, ranked 17th, was entered as the 16th seed in the Qatar Total Open, held in Doha this week. She beat Anna Tatishvili in the opening round before falling to the Czech Republic’s Klara Zakopalova, losing the second and third sets in tiebreaks. The quarterfinals will be played tomorrow, with Victoria Azarenka, who double-bageled McHale, facing ErraniSerena Williams vs. Petra KvitovaMaria Sharapova taking on Sam Stosur; and Agnieszka Radwanska playing Caroline Wozniacki. (Draw: Qatar Total Open Women’s Singles)

(Photo Credit: image via Under Armour)

australian gothic: wilson fetes vika azarenka’s australian open win

Victoria Azarenka wins the 2013 Australian Open using a Wilson Juice tennis racquet

Fight to the Finish: The road to the second consecutive Australian Open title for World No. 1 Victoria Azarenka was long and hard. Not only was everyone trying to topple her, they came close to doing so: Jamie Hampton pushed Vika to three sets in third round but eventually lost because of a back injurySloane Stephens couldn’t continue her momentum after Azarenka’s 10-minute medical timeout in the semis; and Li Na rolled both ankles and hit her head — enough for the 2011 finalist to lose any edge she might have had over Vika in the final. And add to that the already anti-Vika crowd who became rabid after that questionable timeout and was out for Schadenfreude and blood.

But these were all mere distractions which Azarenka’s “fighter” mentality swatted away. She ground out a 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 victory over Li in Saturday’s final.

FYI, Azarenka’s playing a Juice racquet from sponsor Wilson. (Review: Tennis Now’s Robert Martin on the Juice 100 BLX.)

Australian Gothic: Meanwhile, this ad sent out by the Wilson folks after Vika’s win is creeping us out. What happened to her eyes? Full version of the tribute after the cut…

espn2 australian open tv commercial: “tennis down under”

ESPN2 TV commercial - 2013 Australian Open

As if we weren’t already loopy from all the overnight shifts to cover the Australian Open, this commercial promoting ESPN2’s coverage of the the 2013 Melbourne event is sending us over the edge. The graphics play on how everything’s upside down (under) in the Southern Hemisphere. We love it.

Watch: 2013 Australian Open “Tennis Down Under”


(screengrab via YouTube)

before london, andy tried a new game

Small court, big results. Before Andy Murray‘s London hopes got muddled because of injury, the Scot took to a British warehouse to play some Road Tennis. Not sure what that is? Nor were we. adidas explains:

[We invited the] Road Tennis Association of Barbados to London, to teach Murray how to play Road Tennis. A cross between traditional tennis and table tennis, Road Tennis is played on the street, with participants chalking out their own courts. Murray had never played the game before, and was given just one hour to pick up his wooden bat and attempt to master the game’s ins and outs, before we put him up against Barbados’ finest.

In the video above, Murray gets a “warm-up” with storied English boxer David Haye, who is now retired, and British rapper Example.

adidas noted that the Murray vid was the first of many to come for the brand over the next year: “The event marked the start of our new campaign, where we’ll be challenging some of the world’s best tennis players, around the biggest tournaments next year.” Excited? You bet we are!

As for who Murray gets a lesson from on the Road Tennis pavement? That’d be Sylvain “Lama” Barnett, a legend in Barbados and one of the Pro Road Tennis Association’s greatest players of all time.

spotted in the city: rafa's nike display + maria for cole haan

The window’s his. There would be no US Open title for Rafael Nadal, but he did reign as king of Niketown on 57th Street in Midtown Manhattan for most of the Open. We love the picture-framed outfits which you can see better after the jump. Below: Maria’s Cole Haan collection advertises on an 8th Street subway stop downtown.

One more Rafa meets Niketown after the cut.

[Read more…]

short balls: who’s next? PINK & football, TOMS goes Maria + more


Who’s next?
We’re sort of obsessed with the art and function-ability of Prince‘s “Who’s Next” campaign, which let’s users click through a barrage of up-and-coming Prince-racquet toters. US Open junior champ Oli Golding gets his own profile page and the youngsters are splashed across the racquet-maker’s homepage in a well-made vid. Who’s next? Whoever doing is doing Prince’s graphics, we say. One more shot of Prince’s crowning campaign after the jump.

Serena and Venus approved?
We sort of have a love/hate relationships with the whole I’m-a-sexy-chick-wearing-an-NFL-jersey thing. If you’re going to wear a jersey, just wear one, right?! But if honor of all things consumer-tastic, we don’t mind the Victoria’s Secret adventure into sports-timate wear. Just for Serena and Venus, we chose to snapshot the Miami Dolphins page above. Zip-up hoodies run for $68 and “Hipster panties” go for $10.50 or three for $25.50. See a couple more items after the jump.

TOMS, too.
Looks like TOMS, the ever-popular shoe among fashionable do-gooders, is taking a lesson from Maria Sharapova.  Following the great success of Maria’s ballet flat for Cole Haan, TOMS announced that on Feb. 15 of next year they’ll begin to sell their own version of the chic shoes (blue suede, picture above). The shoes will retail for $74 to $129. | More: And if you didn’t know already, TOMS is now taking their you-buy-one-we-give-one-away model to eyewear, which has been a popular hit already.

Hey, New Yorkers!
TSF East really wishes that we could be at this one: Gelf magazine is hosting a tennis-centric reading night this Thursday, Oct. 6, at Le Poisson Rouge in Greenwich Village. Who will be there? That’d be the Wall Street Journal‘s Tom Perrotta, Sports Illustrated‘s S.L. Price and L. Jon Wertheim (here’s his latest Mailbag, if you want talking points). The chatting starts at 7:30, but we advise to be there around the 7 p.m. doors-open time.

short(er) balls: Tom Ford
gets the nod from Out magazine readers as the best-dressed gay. Worst? Boy George takes that honor, according to the mag’s brethren. Who was the most versatile of the crew? TSF fave Johnny Weir was fourth in voting for both best AND worst dressed out of 50 fellas. Double axel! | Staying gay: a list of the all-time best queer TV characters. | Reebok‘s EasyTone shoes? Not so toning, says the US government. | Hope Solo is posing sans clothes for ESPN the Magazine‘s body issue. No tennis players are on the to-pose list, as far as we can see. | Need your tennis betting fix? The new site Tennis Prophet allows for interactive chatting with other fans. | Ticketmaster is giving away a free clinic with the Champions Series Tennis tour (Johnny Mac, Sampras, Agassi + more involved) and other gear. You can’t really beat a free deal anywhere, y’all.

Prince and PINK after the cut (and we don’t mean the artists).
[Read more…]

shirtless: nadal and kortajarena take on armani jeans

We never got around to posting images from Rafa‘s Armani Jeans Fall/Winter 2011 campaign shoot — the poster of which he made a cameo for at Macy’s right before the start of the 2011 U.S. Open — so here they are!

Spanish Armada: Nadal was photographed by Steven Klein for the ads; fellow Spaniard Jon Kortajarena, meanwhile, is the face of the collection’s catalogue. See all of JK’s looks here.

(via VGL)