JJ Watt is known for his intense training. So it is no wonder that he trained with firefighters. Watt can land a 61-foot box jump, squat 700 pounds and routinely lead the NFL in tackles, but can he make it through firefighter training in the heat? John Watt, retired firefighter, joined his son to help him take in the challenge on behalf of the Gatorade Beat the Heat educational campaign.
JJ visited his hometown fire department in Pewaukee, Wisc. and tried the physical and technical training firefighters conduct in order to perform their daily duties which, as JJ points out, offers much greater consequences than he encounters on a NFL field.
The Beat the Heat program teaches youth athletes the importance of heat safety and staying hydrated during the hot summer months, which JJ needed to do plenty of as he pulled water hoses, climbed flights of stairs and put out fires – all in 86-degree weather in full firefighter gear that added to his 6-foot-5 289-pound frame.
For those who didn’t follow Michael Jordan’s career closely he did have his struggles in the league. To counter those challenges he needed to break down those metaphorical walls that he couldn’t breakthrough. A wall he had to breach in order to achieve his championship dreams.
“The physicality of the game was changing,” said Michael Jordan. “The league was allowing defenders to be a lot more physical with the ball handler and I knew that I had to find a way to get stronger and be able to deal with the beating.”
His strategy entailed pre-practice and one-on-one workouts with his trainer, focused on strength training and weights. Motivated by Jordan’s commitment, his teammates began to join in the extracurricular sessions, which often started as early as 7am. Jordan would famously arrive to the gym, with a wry smile and cup of coffee in hand. Aptly the gathering soon became known as the “Breakfast Club.”
The “Breakfast Club” was the foundation for Michael’s epic six title, six Finals MVP run. The sessions proved to Jordan that the status quo was not enough; if he wanted to be a champion there were extra steps involved.
“Breakfast Club was a mindset more than a workout,” clarifies Jordan. “We wanted to be more prepared than anyone else.”
Today, the brand brings the Jordan Breakfast Club to kids around the world through an elevated training collection and interactive training regime curated by Jordan Brand’s family of athletes and Master Trainer. “Michael is the blueprint for greatness,” says Larry Miller, President of Jordan Brand. “We are excited to be able to share some of these insights and training tips with kids who are striving to reach their own greatness.”
The Jordan Breakfast Club Training experience is built around a 30-day program designed by Alex Molden – Jordan Master Trainer and former pro-athlete. The service platform helps kids improve their speed, strength and reaction skills for the season ahead.
After subscribing to the program digitally, athletes will have the opportunity to begin training immediately using the drills and techniques introduced by a collection of Jordan Brand athletes, such as Dez Bryant, Erik Kynard, and Jalen Ramsey. These digital sessions, which will be delivered directly to the athlete through a Jordan Chatbox® execution, are geared toward athletes of all levels.
Athletes can pre-register for the Jordan Breakfast Club at Jordan.com/training and will begin receiving workouts on September 6. Live experiences will be offered in Chicago, New York, Los Angeles and Toronto as well.
Have you been watching the summer games in Rio? Golf fans are excited that golf is returning to the Games for the first time in 112 years. To celebrate Michelob ULTRA is ready to tee up the excitement in Rio to rally fans in celebrating the sport – showing their support for Team USA.
To do so, Michelob ULTRA today debuted a unique video below with a comedic tone featuring pro golfer Scott Langley in action, though in this case, one that shows what it would be like with Scott playing and an animated Brazilian soccer announcer giving the animated play-by-play.
In the video Michelob ULTRA enlisted Nilson César, a famous Brazillian soccer announcer to narrate the spot in a way that only he could – conveying excitement through his mastery of language, enthusiasm, and words that while normal for soccer, makes us all look at golf in a whole new way.
This is all part of Michelob ULTRA’s way of celebrating the return of the sport, as an official sponsor of the PGA Tour and Champions Tour, while simultaneously paying homage to the well-known excitement that host country Brazil has for the beautiful game of soccer.
To get in on the fun, Michelob ULTRA is inviting fans 21 years old and older to share their best golf shot for a chance to receive their own soccer-inspired video as a parody of the ad. Share your best swings at @MichelobULTRA with the hashtag #ULTRAgolf on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
The Olympic Games were never the same since the 1992 Dream Team took the world by storm. The team was lead in part by Michael Jordan. So as we approach this year’s Summer Olympics, Jordan Brand brings out something from the archives of Jordan lore. 1992’s Air Jordan VII is emblematic of this truth. Jordan won his third MVP award, took his second title and claimed a second gold medal in the shoe. With its design, Tinker Hatfield initiated some firsts: removing the Nike Air branding visible on the previous six Jordan models and adding a neoprene Huarache bootie for support. Hatfield also sought to add a new, more international flare to the line through the incorporation of a fresh geometric pattern inspired by a poster for the long-running Afropop Worldwide radio program.
“This one was in the works for a while,” says Hatfield of the patriotic basketball version of the Air Jordan VII. “I did one that was more white based and one that was much more contrasted. My recollection is that MJ thought the contrasted one was really cool. Ultimately, I left it up to him.”
Jordan selected the white-based version. The alternate was relegated to the archives until now. The Air Jordan VII Retro “Tinker Alternate” will be available in full family sizing on August 6. Stay tuned to Nike News and @Jumpman23 on Instagram and Twitter for more information on Jordan Brand product launches.
Even though J.J. Watt might be recovering from injury it didn’t stop him and Reebok on releasing a brand new can’t-miss colorway of his first signature training shoe – the JJ I Preseason Training. The navy, red and white colorway serves as a nod to those who inspire him both on and off the field – his teammates and fans. J.J. gifted all of his teammates new pairs of JJ I’s.
As he continues to push his limits, the JJ I Preseason Training will be there every step, cut, and jump of the way. The JJ I Preseason Training will be available at 12am on August 5 for $99.
First it was Michigan getting Jim Harbaugh to be their head coach for football. Now it is Michigan teaming up with Jordan Brand to upgrade their uniforms and gear. The University of Michigan is more than just a school. It is a community and family represented by a single letter, two hues: Maize and Blue, and a longstanding tradition of excellence — a reputation of leading both academically and athletically.
On the gridiron, Michigan has, since fielding its first team in 1871, claimed more victories than any other school. The university also lays claim to 11 national championships, over 120 first-team all-Americans and three Heisman trophy winners, including Jordan Brand athlete Charles Woodson. Beyond, the program’s Winged Helmet, introduced in 1938, and remains an icon of college football.
Similarly, the Jordan Brand is more than one man. For over 30 years, Jordan Brand has built a culture by pushing the boundaries of innovation and style; the Jumpman logo has come to represent greatness and unites athletes around the world who are willing to push their limits to be the best.
“Michael Jordan never settled. His career was defined by his competitive drive, unwavering work ethic and a dogged pursuit of winning,” says Larry Miller, President of the Jordan Brand. “These same principles have guided the Jordan Brand since its inception, and we see a like-spirit in the University of Michigan. What started with a phone call between Michael and Coach Harbaugh comes to life today in an unprecedented partnership which further diversifies the Jordan Brand’s commitment to football and athletes.”
This fall, that legacy will continue to transcend sport as the Michigan football team debuts the iconic Jumpman on the gridiron.
The Michigan jersey, built on the Nike Vapor Untouchable chasse, features a minimal-seam design and stretch woven materials. Focusing on fit, range of motion and breathability, the jersey includes tailored lines that are articulated to move with the body and laser perforations in the front and back panels to maximize ventilation.
Additionally, taking into account the importance of preparation to success, Jordan Brand will outfit the team with the Jordan Trainer 1 Low. Created by Jordan footwear designers to help eliminate distractions on the practice field and in the weight room, the shoe enhances natural motion, comfort and increased sensory feedback. Speed flex technology in the midsole, Zoom Air in the heel and a Flyweave woven upper facilitate stability and support.
The Jordan Trainer 1 low “Michigan” will be available August 6 on Jordan.com and at The M Den, the official retailer of Michigan Athletics.
Stay tuned to Jordan.com and GoBlueHailMichigan.com for more information on the Michigan x Jordan partnership.
For those who are missing the NBA take heart. Current players and retired players are missing it as well. It seems that Paul George and former NBA player and now ESPN analyst Jalen Rose played a unique game of HORSE. Why is it unique? It took place from the back of a Jeep Wrangler.
This took place at the “Summer of Jeep” event at Navy Pier in Chicago last week.. The event celebrated the Jeep brand’s partnership with USA Basketball.
The 2016 Gatorade Athlete of the Year Awards ceremony honored the top high school athletes in the country for their accomplishments. The prestigious event was held at the LA Hotel in Downtown.
Hosted by ESPN’s talented anchor Sage Steele, the star-studded affair featured prominent pro stars like NFL MVP Cam Newton, NBA Rookie of the Year Karl-Anthony Towns, NFL Rookie of the Year Todd Gurley, Matt Stafford and Jenny Finch.
Earlier in the day, Gatorade hosted a panel emceed by Sage Steele to promote their new endeavor, PlayItForward, which focuses on the decline of youth sports and seeks to provide young athletes access to achieve their athletic dreams by enlisting support from current pro athletes.
The panel featured Minnesota Timberwolves big man Karl-Anthony Towns, US Beach Volleyball star April Ross, Gatorade marketing director Jeff Kearney, Director of Marketing & Fan Engagement for the Atlanta United FC and founder of Catalyst author Kevin Carroll.
The primary focus of PlayItForward is to empower athletes to give back and reverse the decline in youth sports participation. The Male and Female athlete of the year winners receive 1,000 grant to bestow on a local or national youth sports organization of their choice.
Male nominees for the 2016 award were Jacob Eason for Football, Jayson Tatum for Basketball, Drew Hunter for Cross Country, Michael Norman for Track & Field, Lucas Mendes for Soccer and Kyle Muller for Baseball.
Future Duke baller Jayson Tatum of Chaminade College Preparatory School (St. Louis, MO) took home the prestigious honor after leading his squad to a state championship.
The 2016 Female Athlete of the Year award was presented to Rio-bound 16-year old Olympic hurdler Sydney McLaughlin from Union Catholic in New Jersey. McLaughlin qualified for the 400m hurdles by breaking her own national high school record.
Other female nominees included USC bound Khalia Lanier for Volleyball, Erin Boley for Basketball, Katie Rainsberger for Cross Country, Ella Stevens for Soccer and Madilyn Nickles for Softball.
After the ceremony, we had the opportunity to speak with some of the pros in attendance. Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton offered his thoughts on 7v7 football and his belief that athletes should specialize in one sport.
Detroit Lions QB Matt Stafford spoke about the retirement of Calvin Johnson and who will step up to make the new transition as smooth as possible.
We got to catch up with Karl-Anthony Towns and USA softball legend Jenny Finch as well. Special thanks to Gatorade for organizing such a fabulous event.
The Gatorade Athlete of the Year Awards exudes excellence and champions the value of sports in society. Salute to the all the nominees for their hard work and continued success in the future.
He might have lost to the Cleveland Cavaliers in NBA Finals, but Steph Curry is popping bottles of champagne. It is all part of the 2016 Celebrity Spray-Off took place on July 21st in Lake Tahoe at the American Century Celebrity Golf Championship with celebrity and athlete competitors including Steph Curry, Jerry Rice, Roger Clemens, Alfonso Ribeiro, Aaron Rodgers and more!
Just before celebrity superstars teed off on the 18th hole, Korbel California Champagne challenged them to show off their champagne celebration skills as part of the Celebrity Spray-Off. Contestants competed to see how far they could shoot the cork from the top of a bottle of Korbel.
Baseball has been a staple in our country for some time now. It brings people together. To illustrate that point Bank of America is sharing a great video from their #MLBmemorybank program. Bank of America invited Carol and Warren Reckmeyer, whose “Together Since 1952” jerseys went viral last year – to a VIP experience at the Cardinals/Giants game earlier this season. The couple, who has been married for 64 years, received a variety of surprises during the day, which icluded throwing out a double first pitch to Cardinals manager Mike Matheny and Giants manager Bruce Bochy, and a visit from Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith.