Page 1

The Global Local Sports Club

CARLY ROWENA Interview with lifestyle and fitness influencer Carly Rowena about balancing family and career during Lockdown

We look at the training regime of Britain’s most infamous lockdown fitness champion Charles Bronson!



Founder of Parkour Generations

We catch up with Sportside influencer and strength coach

MATT DICKENS of Atlas Health Performance

For when Lockdown ends and we hit the waves!

May 2020


With more than a century of experience, our goal is to build mutual-beneficial relationship with our clients in an effort to design, innovate, and manufacture the products you are looking for. Article on page


Contents Editors Note..........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................4 News - Chameleon BX..............................................................................................................................................................................................................5 News - Salty Dog.............................................................................................................................................................................................................................6 News - SparBar..................................................................................................................................................................................................................................7 News - CSM launches ExperienceGood..............................................................................................................................................................8 News - Burson Cohn & Wolfe...........................................................................................................................................................................................9 News - Nutrabolt...........................................................................................................................................................................................................................10 The Time of the Gamer........................................................................................................................................................................................................12 Real The Power of One........................................................................................................................................................................................................ 16 AluaiĂŞ Capoeira Academy UK.....................................................................................................................................................................................20 Parkour Generations............................................................................................................................................................................................................... 24 Surfing England............................................................................................................................................................................................................................28 Five Top Surfing Apps for Summer........................................................................................................................................................................32 Master Vlogger Carly Rowena on Lockdown Training................................................................................................................... 34 How brands will survive the lockdown..............................................................................................................................................................38 Helping champions squeeze out that last one percent................................................................................................................. 42 KickOff@3 on Crisis Management...........................................................................................................................................................................52 The best shoes for Parkour............................................................................................................................................................................................56 A Profile on AA Sports..........................................................................................................................................................................................................59 A profile on Beyoung Outdoors................................................................................................................................................................................62 Athlete IQ, Australia..................................................................................................................................................................................................................66 Bala Sport............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................69 STRI Group..........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................72

Editors Note Hopefully, the majority of our viewers will be reading this issue from the safety and comfort of their own homes. We say to you all, thank you for taking the current times seriously and doing your part to keep the Covid 19 crisis from spiralling out of control. It has not been an easy period with the extension of the Lockdown across several countries only adding to the general feeling of anxiety and claustrophobia. Our editorial team has been working remotely from their homes and have had the opportunity to see how many businesses and professionals are handling the current situation. It has left us all with a poignant sense of hope, optimism and strength. This is after all, a challenge that the majority of people have taken head on by cooperating with their government’s plans and the advisements of the WHO. Thanks to this, we will overcome the dangers posed by this virus and we will come out on the other side stronger. OUR GRATITUDE When counting the number of major sporting events that have been rescheduled, postponed or cancelled for this year, the list proves to be very long. Across the board many thousands of professional athletes of all levels have found themselves at an impasse. However, despite this, social media is brimming with positive messages from our sporting heroes taking to the internet to keep the spirits of their fans as high as possible. Proving their worth as our champions. To all of these inspiring athletes, we say thank you. Countless businesses within the sporting industry which include the equipment suppliers, service providers, promotors, personalities, trainers and others have found themselves unable to operate or work. While the impact of their sacrifice may linger on their bottom line, long after the Coronavirus has stopped making headlines, it has saved lives. To all the businesses doing their part, we say thank you.

4 |

And to the millions of fans out there who are now sitting at home doing their best to stay active and mentally level. We say thank you to you too. More than ever we are a global team fighting a common foe. Teamwork and cooperation is the only way that we will win. THIS ISSUE Bloggers and vloggers have been leading their audiences with a message of hope and hard work in the struggle to stay fit during Lockdown. To match with their incredible efforts, we looked into an infamous workout by an infamous hero of the cellblock! We also have taken a look at a number of prominent sporting governing bodies and the industries that, despite the current lull have been thriving. We hope you’re staying safe and give you full permission to put your feet up and have a good read.

Enjoy! Kindest regard Donnie Rust Editor #Sportsider

San Francisco based, Chameleon BX, announced Kyree Walker will prepare for the 2021 NBA Draft by training in its 12-month program starting this June in San Francisco.

Kyree Walker, a top-ranked 2020 small forward, with multiple offers from elite Division I programs, announced he will bypass NCAA and prepare for 2021 NBA Draft with Chameleon BX, a 12-month personalized training program based in San Francisco, CA beginning June 2020. Kyree Walker is one of the most promising young basketball stars in his 2020 class, named MaxPreps National Freshman of the Year in 2017 while attending Moreau Catholic in Hayward, CA. Most recently, Walker played his junior year at Hillcrest Prep in Arizona before opting to concentrate on academics his senior year to graduate early and focus his time and energy on playing professionally in the NBA. The 6’ 7” 215-pound small forward is one of the most sought-after college prospects in the nation and has amassed more than 18 offers from Division I schools with elite basketball programs, including Arizona State, Arkansas, Cal, St. Mary’s, Western Kentucky, Illinois, Kansas, LSU, Memphis, Michigan, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas, and UCLA.

based on what was best for Kyree. “The path to the NBA has evolved the past few years. I’ve come to the conclusion in order to get truly prepared to compete at the highest level for a gruelling 82game season will require personalized physical and mental preparation; with an emphasis on a enjoying a long and healthy career. Although I’m genuinely humbled by all the interest and offers I received by some great schools, I believe the Chameleon BX program provides the kind of personalized attention I’m seeking,” said Kyree. His Father added, “Frank Matrisciano’s proven ability to transform athletes, combined with the skills training provided by his accomplished NBA coaching staff is simply a far better option for Kyree than a one-and-done college career. Chameleon BX is customized to fit Kyree’s needs and designed to bring out the best in his game.” Matrisciano’s rationale for developing Chameleon BX was driven by his decade long passion to fill the void that existed for preparing exceptional high school athletes for the NBA. Current pathways such as college, the NBA G League, China, Australia, and Europe don’t prepare elite high school players for the pros. “They aren’t the right environments for 18-year old kids,” said Matrisciano. The Chameleon BX coaching staff includes an esteemed group of former NBA basketball coaches and executives who will prepare athletes for the life in the NBA. The staff includes Bob Hill, Mike Woodson, Dave Joerger, Kim Hughes, Eddie Johnson, Josh Oppenheimer, Tom Sterner and Dean Demopoulos all with extensive NBA and collegiate coaching experience. Elite High School Basketball Standout, Kyree Walker, Will Prepare for NBA Draft with Chameleon BX Top-ranked 2020 small forward, with multiple offers from elite Division I programs, will train for 2021 NBA Draft with Chameleon BX, a 12-month training program founded by Life Changer, Frank Matrisciano

News - Chameleon BX After numerous collegiate offers and careful consideration of all available options, Kyree and his father, Khari Walker, said their decision was | 5

Salty Dog Paddle Has Been Published in the Guinness World Records 2021 for the Largest Underwater Clean-Up Salty Dog Paddle, along with Dixie Divers, has been published in the Guinness World Records 2021 for the Largest Underwater Clean-up in History On June 15, 2019, in Deerfield Beach, Florida, USA, Salty Dog Paddle and its sponsor - Dixie Divers - officially set the record in the upcoming 2021 Guinness Book of World Records for the Largest Underwater Clean-up in history. They had 633 participants and over 100 spectators on the beach and Deerfield Beach International Fishing Pier at the 2019 victory. During the attempt, more than 544 kg (1,200 lb) of trash were removed from the Deerfield Beach Pier by SCUBA diving participants who passed the trash to paddlers from the charity on stand-up paddleboards, who transported the trash to the beach to avoid getting out of the water each time to empty their bags. The trash largely consisted of fishing line and lead weights used in fishing. GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS 2021 FOR THE LARGEST UNDERWATER CLEAN-UP IN HISTORY The waters at Deerfield Beach in Florida, USA, are cleaner thanks to the environmental efforts of Salty Dog Paddle, a federally and state-licensed environmental and animal welfare agency that works with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the U.S. Coast Guard. After gathering a total of 633 divers at Deerfield Beach International Fishing Pier, the charity set the record for the largest underwater clean up in 24 hours – successfully removing debris that consisted of fishing

line, garbage, even larger materials such as boat ladders and barbells, which previously laid beneath the water’s surface. Divers for the event travelled in from all over the world to become a part of recordbreaking history – some who are based as far as Europe and South America. The participants spent two and a half hours scouring the depths of the sea for any waste that could be degrading the ecosystem. According to locals, the clean-up has significantly improved the water quality for marine life in the area, and residents are hopeful that it will increase populations. The city of Deerfield Beach took all debris from the attempt and sent it to be recycled. Salty Dog Paddle has since announced that the underwater clean-up will continue in association with Dixie Divers as an annual event. About Salty Dog Paddle: Salty Dog Paddle is a non-profit surf and SUP brand whose sole purpose is to save injured rescue dogs and marine life by stepping up where animal rescues can’t through the brand and dog-friendly water sports activities and events.

News - Salty Dog 6 |

Mixed martial arts and fitness equipment sees rise in sales SparBar Inc., the original pioneer of SparBar™ boxing, Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) and fitness equipment, is pleased to announce a corporate update on a number of key fronts, including the recent increase in sales due to the COVID-19 pandemic. SparBar Inc. has seen both its sales and revenues increase by 300% per month during the period of January to April, due in part to the recent stay-athome campaigns that have been implemented the world over by government leaders. In the face of such an unprecedented and positive response, SparBar has begun to hire additional staff and has reached out to logistic service providers in order to mitigate its backlog and expedite its shipments around the globe. Effective immediately, Sparbar has engaged New York-based GE Logistics Inc. to manage fulfillment demands in the United States and Canada.   Creater and CEO Jasvinder “Jazz” Singh Gill, is delighted with the response our products have received’ over the past two months, saying, “We hope to see this pandemic conquered quickly, but we’re very happy to see SparBar™ equipment helping so many new and existing customers get a great workout while they’re stuck in their homes.” 

proud of its position as the inventors of the global combat sensation known the world over as SPARBAR™. Founded in 2013 and backed by over 20 years of real boxing experience, we have single-handedly changed the fight game with our innovative concept of training without a sparring partner. Used by world champions, international celebrities, world-leading gyms and with over 200M+ social media video views, SparBar’s success ensures that we are not just pioneers, but game-changers in the combat sports training equipment market. SparBar™ is the key to learning core fundamental boxing skills and developing handeye coordination as you build footwork, balance, speed, stamina, accuracy and power, simulating realistic sparring in a safe environment. Managing Director Kenny Lam said he is ‹not surprised› by the recent strong growth in SparBar™ sales.  “We have a truly great product and have always been extremely confident in our brand,” said Lam. “Social distancing guidelines have only helped confirm our strengths while introducing them to an entirely new group of enthusiasts: you no longer need to leave your home or be in close proximity with someone else to get a complete and thorough workout.”

News - SparBar

SPARBAR™ is a global sports fitness brand and | 7

CSM Launches ExperienceGood collaboration platform CSM has recently announced the launch of, a digital hub to enable collaboration and story sharing across the world of experience marketing. The platform was developed by CSM together with foundational partner The Vendry, with the goal of driving the industry towards innovative solutions that highlight the power of collective experiences in this new era of social distancing. The announcement follows the launch two weeks ago of #ExperienceGood; a global social media campaign to collectively celebrate ideas and people adapting positively to the sudden shift in what life experiences mean during this unprecedented crisis. The partnership with The Vendry will usher #ExperienceGood into its next phase, with the Experience Good movement intended to continue beyond the COVID-19 crisis and to redefine, reinvigorate and reposition the most powerful form of marketing at what could be the most pivotal time in the industry’s history. Leaders from sport and entertainment will be invited to join and work together to share content showcasing the power of experiences, inventive ways companies and brands are tackling the challenges of the adapting industry, the amazing actions people and groups are taking in sustainability, community-building, diversity, advocacy or social impact, and developing new solutions. The Vendry connects brands with events agencies, vendors and venues across the US, and allows event professionals to showcase their work, connect with industry peers and leverage their marketplace to find the best agencies, venues and suppliers.

Commenting on the launch of ExperienceGood. co, The Vendry Founder Daphne Hoppenot said, “Experience Good starts with thought

leadership about the current environment and what companies can be doing now. There’s also an opportunity for bigger picture thought leadership about the future of the industry. Our goal is to build a coalition of thought leaders in the industry and use it to advance the industry as a whole.” Sarah Riggott, Group Marketing Director at CSM said, “In a time where social distancing is

imperative, so too is the importance of communities and bringing people together in the best way we can. Experience Good is a place where industry thought leaders can share their ideas, network and come together to navigate these challenging times. We are excited to see where this movement will go.” CSM Sport & Entertainment: CSM, part of the Chime Challenger Network, is a global integrated marketing and brand experience agency working across sport, entertainment, media and social impact. Driven by a team of 1000+ people in 25+ locations, our purpose is to pursue extraordinary. Connecting with people through their passion points, we build brands, work with rights holders and create live experiences.

News - CSM launches ExperienceGood 8 |

BCW survey shows how COVID-19 crisis is shaking up cities hosting major sports events Leading global communications agency BCW (Burson Cohn & Wolfe) have released results of a new survey focused on the impact of COVID-19 on cities hosting major sporting events. The key findings revealed that the current situation and disruption in the international sports event market by the COVID-19 virus will likely lead to significant strategic adjustments for many cities significantly involved in event hosting. The online survey was sent out to an international selection of 100 host cities and answered by those responsible for event bidding and hosting for each respective city. Of note: • COVID-19 crisis impacts budgets. In terms of the budget allocated to event hosting by various levels of governments, 78% of host cities expect to suffer financial losses in 2020 due to the cancellation or postponement of sporting events in their city or region while 43% of cities think they will suffer from a budget cut for event hosting in 2021 and 17% after 2021.

Lars Haue-Pedersen, BCW Sports Practice Managing Director, said: “We wanted to get a

first look of how experienced host cities view the disruption caused by the COVID-19 situation so that we can provide smart counsel to our clients, including both rightsholders and hosts. The results confirm our presumption that the current disruption in the international event market can have serious implications for both right holders like the International Federations and their host city partners. For quite some time, both sides have been accustomed to stable longterm planning ensuring that everything is in place several years ahead. With COVID19 this stability has been challenged, and strategies likely need to be re-worked and contingencies put in place.”

• COVID-19 crisis impacts strategy. In terms of impact on overall hosting strategy, there seems to be a possible shift to focus more on national events, taking away focus from hosting future international events, with 37% of the cities saying that it is likely that they will host less international events in the future, while 17% saying that they will likely most more national events as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.

News - Burson Cohn & Wolfe

• COVID-19 crisis impacts hosting plans. 84% of the cities estimate that the COVID-19 situation will have a strong impact on their event hosting plans in 2020, but at the same time 58% think that the impact in 2021 will be only modest. | 9

Nutrabolt Delivers Positive Energy During COVID-19 As the makers of America’s best-selling preworkout brand C4® and the world’s #1 BCAA brand XTEND®, Nutrabolt has been committed to making fitness accessible to all since 2002. Since its launch in 2011, C4® has become the undisputed preworkout champ, with over 2 billion servings sold. Today, Nutrabolt makes a full range of clinically studied supplements and on-the-go drinks for people who want to maximize performance and dominate life. And, as a global leader in sports nutrition they have taken it on themselves to ensure that during this trying period that they are delivering positive energy to their customers. Nutrabolt, has launched initiatives to support communities that have been impacted by COVID-19. These include the likes of personal trainers and fitness professionals and the men and women who are fighting on the front lines of this pandemic, including the thousands of medical professionals, police officers, and firefighters. Nutrabolt aims to deliver hope, motivation, and energy during these unprecedented times.

(PRNewsfoto/Nutrabolt) SPOT YOUR TRAINER Personal training has been hit very hard by Covid 19. Not everyone has the benefit of flourishing blogs and digital training programmes to fall back on during this time and so many of them have found themselves completely at the mercy of this pandemic.

guide, and support their clients during their fitness struggles and it’s duty of those who have benefited from their expertise to support them. Participating trainers will offer C4® and XTEND® products to their networks at 20% off and earn a portion of net proceeds on every order. The program provides trainers with a way to generate supplemental income and customers and fans with discounted product; while also supporting their favourite trainer. “Our business was built in the fitness community so when we saw how severely that community had been impacted by Covid-19, we wanted to find a way to help,” says Katie Tershel, Director of Partnership Marketing at Nutrabolt, “We all know these trainers personally and felt it was our obligation to find a quick solution.” SUPPORTING MEDICAL INDUSTRY Nutrabolt also saw an opportunity to help the medical professionals working tirelessly to help provide on-going care to patients all across the United States. With the recent launch of C4’s “Awaken Your Super” marketing campaign, the company pivoted its focus to these incredible heroes, fighting to keep the public safe and healthy. Over the next two-weeks medical distribution centres and 40+ hospitals in Los Angeles, San Diego, New York, and Austin will be receiving more than 75,000 cans of C4® and XTEND® beverages to help those staff members remain fuelled and hydrated. Nutrabolt’s team will continue to support these efforts and search for additional ways to make a difference in local communities. Mari Lee, Vice President of Beverage Marketing, states, “For us, this wasn’t about being first or loudest to make a donation. We wanted to have a meaningful impact where it was needed most, and this took a great deal of coordination. It was humbling to see our partners step up to make this happen. Trucking companies, distribution and retail partners all offered support to ensure the heroes on the front lines could receive our energizing donation.”

News - Nutrabolt

Spot Your Trainer, is an American focussed programme dedicated to help these fitness professionals impacted by the complete shutdown of all gyms and training facilities across the nation. These are people who have helped inspire,

10 |

Capoeira is an Afro-Brazilian art form that combines elements of martial arts, music, dance and gymnastics. It was created in Brazil by slaves brought from Africa, especially from present day Angola some time after the 16th century.

Train With Us      

Get Healthier And Keep Fit Improve Your Body Coordination and Rhythm Learn To Play New Instruments Learn Portuguese Language Meet New People And Make New Friends Have Fun Article on page



The Time of the Gamer #PlayApartTogether

In an unprecedented move, the Game Industry has united to promote the messages of WHO in a fight against Covid 19. The virus that has brought the entire globe to a shuddering standstill. They have come together under the banner of #PlayApartTogether, a campaign to unite us all while keeping us safely apart while we play our favourite games against opponents who may be in different countries. Go internet! One thing is certain, there are more people playing online video games and committing themselves to online sporting tournaments than ever before. This area of sport, online gaming, has been a growing area for decades, drawing in audiences of millions across the world looking to spectate and get involved. This proves two wonderful facts about human nature: one, that humans are naturally inclined to competition and two, that even in times of

12 |

isolation and social distancing we will find a way to play together. THE UNITED Eighteen game industry leaders in the interactive entertainment space have launched #PlayApartTogether, encouraging their vast network of users to follow the WHO’s health guidelines which include: physical distancing, hand hygiene, respiratory etiquette and other powerful preventive actions people can take to fight Covid-19. By bringing special events, exclusives, activities, rewards and inspiration to some of the most popular games in the world, #PlayApartTogether aims to help users adopt best practices for the sake of their own health, their families and their communities. By incorporating Covid -19 selfprotection messages into games, the industry

is telling the world: “Wherever you are, whatever game you play, you can make a difference.” The list of gaming busineses joining the programme include: Activision Blizzard, Kabam, Snap Games, Amazon Appstore, Maysalward, Twitch, Big Fish Games, Playtika, Unity, Dirtybit, Pocket Gems, Wooga, Glu Mobile, Riot Games, YouTube Gaming, Jam City, SciPlay and Zynga. Said, Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick, “It’s never been more critical to ensure people stay safely connected to one another. Games are the perfect platform because they connect people through the lens of joy, purpose and meaning. We are proud to participate in such a worthwhile and necessary initiative.” KEEPING THE SPORTING SPIRIT ACTIVE The gaming industry has seen a massive rise in popularity across all age groups during the Covid-19 Lockdown. This spike is largely thanks to millions of people around the globe facing the challenges of dealing with isolation and confinement. An immediate means of communicating and making new friends online and engaging in an activity has meant an opportunity to socialise, keep in contact and have fun in a safe manner. Interestingly, while sporting games have always been popular, especially those that allow friends to work together in a team. It is the social games that involve interaction across multiple elements that have proven to be the most popular. Games

featuring free-roam landscapes and the ability to take on challenges with friends and family have seen a massive spike in popularity on what was already a leading game genre. This ties into the Self Determination Theory that suggests that people have three psychological needs to be mentally healthy. We need to have autonomy and feel that we have choices and can act freely according to our values and be free to pursue meaningful goals. We need to feel competent, effective and capable of meeting the challenges in our lives and overcoming problems. Finally, we need relatedness, where we feel connected to others who understand us. According to Anette Staloy who is the Vice President of business and marketing for Dirtybit, (125 million downloads) the mission of the entire gaming industry is to let people create memorable moments together. Aligned with this, her company’s focus has always been on creating social game experiences. “Our players all over the world have been sharing heart-warming stories about how much it means to them to be able to connect with and keep in touch with friends and family through our Fun Run games,” she says, “We appreciate the opportunity to take part in the #PlayApartTogether initiative, to help encourage people to follow the guidance of the WHO and local health authorities.” GAMING IS SPORT Although gaming is still associated with leisure time, this may change soon. There are millions of professional gamers out there who apply just as many hours into the perfection of their skills as any basketball player, fencer or kickboxer. In fact, millennials, who were the first proper gaming generation have demonstrated that gaming encourages cognitive development, systematic problem solving, creative thinking, strategic execution and team building. It is not uncommon that the chosen games reflect the interests and passions of those playing them. Football players are likely to enjoy many | 13

hours a week/day playing FIFA, martial artists may be seen battering the controllers on games like Mortal Kombat or the latest Tekken. Meanwhile problem solving games- be them on consoles, phones or tablet devices- are always popular with sporting activities that require flexible and strategic minds. Anyone doubting the credulity of online gaming as “sport” should remember that every single sport started out originally as a group of people just having fun. Football, possibly one of the most popular global sports began with two groups of people kicking around a ball. Afterall it is the popularity of an activity that determines its success as a sport and there is no denying that with billions of players around the world, online gaming in whatever form is compelling as a sporting activity. It is also one that can bring millions of people together without getting them within six feet of each other. ARE E-SPORTS SAVING OUR SANITY? Not only affecting sporting people, confinement and restrictions on our activity is making everyone feel like a prisoner in their own homes. The current situation has put us all under the strain of how to maintain our mental health and e-gaming has provided an opportunity to keep our minds active and occupied. Between the two, physical health is an easier thing to maintain than mental health. Half an hour a day exercising will have tremendous benefits for the body which can have an exponential effect on how you feel about yourself. It takes effort and routine, but it can still be set into a specific time of each day. The mental and psychological issues associated with what is basically low-key solitary confinement is something that needs to be addressed but not just through a token warning. Having looked at all the options, it appears that online gaming, in whatever its forms, may provide

14 |

an opportunity for people to keep their minds active without actually having to consider it being “important and healthy”. No child has ever enjoyed playing a sport because it was “good for them”they did it because they found it fun. It helped them create bonds with friends who understood them and kept their minds active and focussed. This doesn’t change when you become an adult and for us to stay healthy, we need to be able to have fun with our friends and make new ones. Nicolo Laurent, the chief executive of Riot Games takes the above further and says that physical distance should not mean social distancing. In fact, the current situation may provide the opportunity for the next top gamers to be discovered. “For Rioters,” he says, referring to the millions of fans of Riot Games, “Playing games is more than just a game; it’s a meaningful life pursuit. And now, for the billions of players around the world, playing games could help the pursuit of saving lives. Let’s beat this COVID-19 boss battle together.”

How having a kick around can change communities for the better. Article on page


Real The Power of One Boxing gear from a boxing POV

Inspired and used by professional boxers, REAL is a brand of advanced and functional sportswear for anyone wanting to enjoy premium equipment inside and out of the ring. The product offers a higher quality of gear supporting a wide movement while being distinctive and stylish. The first entrepreneurial push for Max Fraser, who left his career of over a decade in the financial district to pursue a dream of being a boxing coach, REAL represents more than just a clothing brand. Boxing is based on values of respect and inclusion, with most of the hardest work being done outside the ring on the training floor which includes the physical and mental preparation. “I split my time between being a personal trainer with a level one England Boxing lanyard and growing the REAL brand,” Max says, “I’ve found boxing is the best all-rounder, combining the highest levels of fitness with a deep sense of personal value and a respect for others.” Max, along with anyone who takes their boxing training seriously, would testify that boxing is a

16 |

perfectly balanced sport. Incorporating respect and inclusion, ferocity with humility. It pushes you forward towards your fullest potential and helps you face and assess who you are and what you want to be. In boxing, it is entirely down to you to determine what you get out of it. Be it health, confidence, titles or all three.

“Boxing is a lifestyle,” Max says, “By its very nature it makes you a stronger person, making you self-reliant and training you to realise that you are capable of doing amazing things. You are an unstoppable force and you are far stronger than you could ever imagine. It’s all about the power of one.”

REAL. THE POWER OF ONE. REAL is targeted to those who are serious about getting the very best out of their training and want to have the latest, high-end gear to work with. A range of wraps, socks and caps are available on the website and the best materials are used to create these products. Currently, there is a targeted range of products available because Max is purposefully discerning with his products and wanted to home in on the exact products that boxers need to be of the highest quality. Indeed, perhaps as a sign of who really knows their training and who does not, can be what they think is important for a boxer to wear. Quality wrappings to protect the knuckles and wrists, carefully thought out socks that allow for toe and heel grip allowing for that all important transference of power from the feet into the arms. Items that support and improve these small but crucial things are the sorts of products that real fighters value. Even the caps, which are understated and stylish are designed to keep the head warm during recovering periods.

“Of course, the caps are pretty cool to wear as well,” Max points out, “Nobody wants to train with something that’s ugly, do they?” NEW PRODUCTS A range of additional products are coming including shorts and T-shirts, then in September this year, hoodies, sweatshirts and tracksuits are forecast to be released. Max is excited about these developments but is adamant about the quality of his products and not allowing the success of his current range to make him expand too soon. | 17

“When boxers visit my website, they see a product range through the eyes of a boxer,” he says, “They see quality that is first functional and secondly stylish. The same will go with all the products that appear on my site in the future.” FUTURE GOALS Like any brand creator, Max dreams of his kit being used by the highest professional boxers but for the moment as his business is still bobbing and weaving through the competitive years, he is happy to be the supplier of choice of many dedicated pugilists at a variety of levels. “In some ways that is more authentic and rewarding,” he says, “Professional boxers are often sponsored gear, so you never know if they’ve actually chosen a brand or not. Whereas my customers who range from sixteen to forty five year olds, have selected my brand above all the other choices out there.” And it is not limited to boxing. All martial arts like UFC, karate, Krav Maga and kickboxing require quality and reliable products that have been thoroughly and exhaustively tested in the ring and on the training mat. THE RIGHT MESSAGE Up early and training from 06.30-07.30 every morning, Max certainly makes the most out of his day. After his own training he spends about two

hours a day with clients and the rest of the day is spent on his business. Marketing plays a huge part in the promotion of a brand but leaning back on what he has learnt through boxing he knows the value of preparation and making sure that he positions himself properly with the right message. “Brands make a statement,” he points out, “The people that use my brand are making that same statement, so I have to make sure I have the right voice and the right message to give.” With this in mind, Max has made his five, ten and fifteen year plan but is really focussed on the six month goal. Preferring to dream big but work small he knows that the blocks used to build his business today will become the foundations for tomorrow. “Again, it’s the same as boxing,” he says, “You always have your eyes on the big fight, but you have to make sure what you’re doing right now counts. I don’t see the sense in putting less than one hundred percent into whatever I’m doing now.” 2020 So how is this pioneering hard hitter going to be making this year a knock out? Max predicts that by the end of 2020 his product launches will all have been successful and his products available to buy in bulk. He will also have a couple of extra items that would be nice for the range, like a really good boxing robe. Then, by the close of 2020 he will have hired his first employee. “The two year goal is to be within the top five boxing apparel focuses in Europe,” he says, “I am already marketing with the globe considered. I have a lot of channel exposure through Instagram and a growing popularity in Russia where the fighters value getting every advantage through their equipment that they can.” COMMUNITY The second half of REAL’s unique selling point is that Max is very passionate about supporting mental health and wellbeing and his brand sponsors a charity called Place 2 Be. “I want to get people interested in boxing from a grass roots level,” he says, “Boxing does not mean

18 |

that you have to get into the ring at all, but at every level it can be quite meditative as it focusses the mind and strengthens the body.”

Max recently volunteered on a boxing programme to coach Liberian kids and he is constantly looking for outreach opportunities. He believes that boxing has a long standing place in communities for a reason because once you get started it works better than medicinal drugs at combating mild/ moderate depression and bolstering self-confidence.

“Fighting is focussed on yourself,” Max says, “Invest in yourself and acquire the right support and equipment.” | 19

Aluaiê Capoeira Academy UK An interview with Mestrando Je By Donnie Rust

One of the most attractive aspects is found in its roots, he reveals. Capoeira was created by slaves to protect and build themselves up and keep them physically and mentally fit. It was shaped into a formidable tool in the fight against inequity. THE IMMENSE STRENGTH BEHIND RHYTHM

Developed by African slaves in Brazil during the 16th century, capoeira incorporates elements of dance, acrobatics martial arts and music. Recognized by its fluid and complex manoeuvres that often involve hands on the ground with inverted kicks it is highly stylistic and unique in the martial arts. A deeply cultural practise, those who aren’t familiar with the fighting style hidden within the movements, will find it beautiful to watch and quite mesmerising. Mestrando Je, who has practised the art for most of his life, explains that one of the reasons why capoeira is so popular is because it can benefit a person on multiple levels. Balance, coordination, a general level of fitness and flexibility as well as a sense of rhythm and body awareness are all developed. These physical attributes can be enhanced and make a significant difference in quality of life. “It also has a lot to do with the musical side of capoeira,” he explains, “It can make people feel more comfortable and willing to exercise. Training Capoeira also builds self-esteem and helps a person develop a sense of identity as a member of a nurturing community and as an individual because nobody plays capoeira the same as someone else.”

20 |

Imagine the scene: A group of people standing in a circle, with drums (atabaque) and other instruments being played while two practitioners in the centre appear to dance around each other in a swirl of limbs, handstands and somersaults. Members of the circle take turns in the centre, play the atabaque and sing with the music. Slave owners and foremen would have thought nothing of it. They certainly would not have considered that these joyous community dances were preparing the bodies of these slaves to become some of the most formidable weapons in the martial arts world. For a style that focuses so strongly on rhythm and movement rather than aggressive fighting, capoeira has one of the strongest kicks in the martial arts. This may surprise many staunch combatants, but the capoeira kick was scientifically tested by National Geographic against karate, muah tai and taekwondo. It clearly proved that the kick, while not the fastest (clocking in at 99 miles an hour- which still seems pretty quick) landed with a bone shattering 1800 pounds of force! (Watch Youtube Video) ALUAIE CAPOERIA INSTITUTE Mestrandro Je, began training capoeira in the 90s in the project Crianças Carentes (street children’s project) in Londrina, Brazil. In 2002 he began his career as a capoeira instructor in Mestre Fran’s academy. In 2010 he earned his certification as a Capoeira Professor and became a Capoeira Mestrando in November 2013.

His journey has taken him to many different projects. In different capacities Mestrando Je has taught capoeira for children growing up in the less privileged neighbourhoods in Londrina, including Casa do Caminho in 2002, Guarda Mirim in 2003 and Projovem in 2011. “I also taught capoeira and music in Londrina’s juvenile prison in 2011, and since 2010 I have been collaborating with the NGO Beyond Action in London and Brazil,” he says. Currently, Mestrando Je lives in London where he teaches capoeira professionally and is involved in a number of different community projects around the city. MOTIVATIONS The three founders of Aluaiê were originally part of another school of martial arts, however due to philosophic conflicts, they decided to create their own school. In 2016 they founded Aluaiê Capoeira Academy UK with the philosophy of encouraging, spreading and rescuing their culture throughout

the Brazilian martial arts. The three masters are Mestrando Je (United Kingdom), Mestrando Marcinho (Brazil) and Mestrando Vagner (USA). Since Aluaiê school started it is safe to say that this pursuit has been successful as so many people identify their philosophy as their own. Today, Aluaiê schools can be found in different countries around the world such as Portugal, UK, USA, Colombia, Brazil, Spain and Belgium. The growth of their community has also influenced the creation of an e-book by Mestrando Mercinho and Mestrando Je entitled “Fit and Fight”. In this book they have taken the opportunity to explain the art of combining martial arts with fitness. “It has been very successful since we launched it on Amazon and Ebay,” he says, “Not only for those interested in learning more about the concept but also as a teaching aid for our national and international students and community members.” | 21

EVER CHANGING While many martial arts schools inevitably fall prey to becoming too academic and rigid, capoeira is a style that encourages discovery and expression. It is as much a beautiful dance as it is an effective martial art and it always welcomes new ideas and concepts. “The quality of our school is in constant development,” Mestrando Je explains, “The three of us are continuously travelling and visiting different capoeira and martial arts events, where we enrich our knowledge from experienced people from other different schools.” This eagerness to learn has helped them develop their schools by always having something new and interesting to bring to the table. The three masters are all qualified in self-defence and have experience in a variety of martial arts. Allowing them to incorporate these aspects in the classes they deliver. “We also believe that travelling and training has to be combined with studying and reading,” he says, “You can have an excellent physical condition and be very good in your movements however if you don’t study new concepts, you can get stuck on your knowledge. That is what we try to transmit to our students.” CHALLENGES Every business comes with its challenges and one of the first that the foundation faced came right at the start of their Aluaiê School. Mestrando Je explains that they were coming out of another group and were creating a new vision with a new philosophy.

22 |

“This philosophy was unknown by many people so they were unsure about our purposes,” he says, “As time passed though, students became more confident and satisfied with our institute and our approach.” Another challenge that has to be faced is the burden of every start up business: finances and advertising. It has meant that as a group they’ve had to learn how to make hard decisions and prioritise certain endeavours and projects with a long term vision. “We have a number of charities that we like to support,” he explains, “We believe very strongly in these but there are times when finances aren’t available or situations where we need to invest that money back into our foundation. Thus enabling us to offer greater support in the future.” TEAMWORK With over four hundred members across all of the Aluaiê schools now being stuck at home during the Lockdown, team work has been more important than ever. They’ve been encouraging members to keep as fit as possible during this time and to practise as much as possible. To achieve this and maintain contact with their students they offer training sessions twice a week on Wednesdays and Fridays via online facetime. Mestrando Je explains that their main collaborators are the oldest students in the school. They have a “high” belt which is a symbol of the hard work, dedication, and commitment that they have demonstrated over time. In this sense, the belt is the most precious compliment that a capoeira teacher can pay a student and also indicates a very high level of trust. So, when

the Mestre is out of the city due to an event or conference, usually the Master names a student with a high belt to deliver the lesson on his or her behalf.

“Capoeira has always been a symbol of togetherness,” he says, “And it has a long history of fighting against prejudice and the inequalities of society and this fight is a part of its soul.”

“We provide continuous training to those collaborators,” he says, “We ensure there is always a friendly work environment and acknowledge collaborators achievements and reward them. We teach that positive communication is the key and encourage friendly competition and seek to train them to be a leader worth following. We never forget to train our students on school values, vision and goals.”


PLANS FOR 2020/2021 Being the leader of an international community doesn’t end just because the globe is currently under house arrest. The Masters have a lot to do in 2020 ranging from advertising to social projects and opening new schools in other countries. Then, there is the ongoing fight against social inequality in whatever forms it presents itself. | 23

Parkour Generations An interview with Dan Edwardes By Donnie Rust

Dan Edwardes, founder of Parkour Generations began his training in 2001 and has been active as a professional parkour traceur since 2004. He launched his business in 2007 as a vehicle to transmit, protect and teach the philosophy and multiple benefits of parkour training. To help people fulfil their potential as human beings both physically and psychologically. This goal has not changed in the last thirteen years and is set to continue to shape new members in the future. “We had experienced the incredible power of parkour in our own personal development,” Dan explains, “And we wanted to share this knowledge and method with as many people as possible and to make parkour accessible and more inclusive.” THE DISCIPLINE OF PARKOUR The roots of parkour have been around for a very long time, being that it draws on ancestral, natural human movements, but in its modern form it is a product of multiple influences from military obstacle course training, athletics, martial

24 |

arts, acrobatics, strength practices and everyday play. Those who practise parkour, known as tracers or traceurs, aim to get through complex environments from one point to another, without any equipment and in the fastest and most efficient way possible. Often referred to as “free running” it has made appearances in video games and films to demonstrate acrobatic skill in an urban environment. While today there are parkour academies and training studios with equipment that can be used to train and learn in a safe environment, parkour’s origins lie in urban concrete jungle gyms. One of the notable characteristics of traceurs is that they can navigate an urban environment quickly and determine the fastest way across it. Scaling what seem to be unscalable walls and clearing what should be unjumpable gaps between buildings. They can leap from rooftops and land on solid concrete and carry the force of an impact through a forward roll and just keep on moving.

STRONG BODY AND KEEN MIND The physical benefits of parkour speak for themselves. Five minutes of parkour can include running, climbing, rolling and leaping, all usually at a sprint. This is a uniquely effective way to develop musculature, strengthen ligaments and joints and increase cardio vascular health. Additionally, and perhaps fundamentally, parkour encourages people to look at their environment in a different way. This gives them a deeper appreciation for the urban surroundings but even more than that it teaches important skills such as problem solving, taking action and most importantly having confidence in yourself and your convictions. DAN EDWARDES Dan has trained in parkour and martial arts for over thirty five years. He is also an avid sky diver, motorcyclist, hiker, runner and urban explorer who loves climbing, rugby and reading. One of the most active people you’ll ever meet he’s proved to be a bit of a polymath, having published two books of his own and now moving into writing screenplays for movies and TV. All while running an international community of free runners. “There just isn’t enough time in the day,” he says, “It’s a pity I still need to sleep really.” Dan blames his highly active lifestyle on the fact that he has a highly active lifestyle. It is an upward spiral that he can’t get off of. According to him, when you’re fit, healthy and have hobbies that challenge you both physically and mentally you get addicted to constantly improving. You always want to be better than the person you were yesterday. Making the person you will be tomorrow someone you really want to meet. THE PARKOUR EXPLOSION When Dan first founded Parkour Generations, he could not have imagined back then that they would become the world’s first and only multinational parkour organisation. The launch in 2007 was also a perfect time for parkour as Youtube was still a young platform very populated by amateur videos that were impressive, exciting and original. Parkour was

something fresh for the platform and many videos at the time became viral. This did however mean that a lot of people who did not know what they were doing, were trying things that were well beyond their capabilities and hurting themselves in the process. “It needed an official brand that people could follow and work with,” Dan explains, “And something to inspire and motivate them to continue to practise and improve.” Things have certainly changed since those early days. Parkour Generations has since achieved recognition for parkour as an official sport in the UK, with 100,000 practitioners in England alone, according to a 2019 survey by Sport England. They also have bases in the USA, South America, Asia and across Europe. THE BUSINESS “Obviously teaching is our core business,” Dan says, “But we have applied parkour in multiple fields and industries, leading us to win the Canary Wharf Business Partnership Award in 2016.” | 25

Dan explains that their main applications for parkour are quite varied and have grown over the years as new opportunities have presented themselves. • Coaching – Parkour Academy classes, workshops, seminars and events • Schools – delivery of the Parkour For Schools Programme worldwide • Education – the ADAPT Qualifications are now the global certification for becoming a parkour coach, delivered to over 3000 coaches across 40 countries. • Fitness – the Parkour Fitness Specialist certifications are accredited by NASM, ACE, AFAA and more, helping fitness pros and personal trainers introduce parkour into their own programmes to help their clients move better. • Performance – movies, TV, stunt work, product launches, live displays, openings, theatre productions and more. • Parkour Design – designing and building parkour facilities, both indoor and outdoor, for developers, local authorities and schools.

26 |

• Parkour Tactical – training the military in urban terrain navigation, functional fitness and exfil/infil work • Penetration testing – testing secure facilities for weaknesses and security issues • Consulting and Corporate Team Building – applying parkour to teams and groups to help them develop a growth mindset and start overcoming problems and thinking differently. • Retail – parkour clothing and training equipment CHALLENGES His business may now be international and taking him to far flung places but initially Parkour Generations was an education drive aimed at helping people understand what parkour is. Demonstrating that it was safe and useful and important for children. Then it became a matter of having enough professional, skilled coaches and athletes to provide for the huge demand for coaches and traceurs that they encountered. “Now the challenges are about expanding into whole new areas,” he says, “Creating new applications, and also protecting parkour from the attempts to appropriate it by organisations like the International Gymnastics Federation!”

TEAMWORK There are 80 staff directly employed worldwide and they run a thorough Professional Development Programme for all of them. This includes coaching education, core skill development, professional skills, communication abilities, and more.

“We believe in constant growth and personal development and creating a culture of coaching throughout the organisation,” he says. WHO IS PARKOUR FOR? There is a misconception that parkour is only for the young. But like all activities it is entirely dependent on the person doing it. Dan, who’s experience includes parkour in all of its forms as well as many martial arts knows that age does not need to exclude you from an activity, even one that is as fundamentally physical as parkour. “We have family classes that start at 18 months,” he says, “And our oldest traceur is currently ninety one years old. Remember, it is as much a mental state of seeing a target and reaching it as it is a physical exercise.” He explains further that parkour calls out to the inner child and natural mover in all human beings. It’s simply how we are meant to be using our bodies, to run, jump, climb, crawl, swing and roll. This is a powerful form of expression, nourishment and enjoyment for all human beings.

“It’s incredibly liberating and changes your perception of the world and your environment around you,” he says, “Opening up your city to you and connecting you to a fantastic, inclusive community.” 2020 PLANS Not a man that does well with just sitting around, Dan has many plans for this year. They will be taking a lot of training online to provide more access to people around the world and are building new Academies and parkour facilities in London and internationally. Also, they are instigating a number of great social enterprise partnerships with groups like Plastic Patrol and No Car Day in London, and their Overcome, SheCanTrace and Leave No Trace Initiatives. “We are very focused on using parkour and the amazing community to better the world around us in every way,” he says, “You just need to jump at it.”

COMPANY ADDRESS: Chainstore Gym, 64 Orchard Place, E14 0JY TELEPHONE: 0044 (0)203 6513364 EMAIL: WEBSITE: w | 27


Surfing England Catching the right waves

Run by local surfers wanting to support the surfing community in the UK, Surfing England is the recognized NGB for English surfing. As the national governing body, it has brought a level of service and support to the activity whether it is a serious sporting pursuit or a weekend leisure interest. Proudly serving surfers, coaches, clubs and surf schools they have taken responsibility for the entire lot. We caught up with operations manager Hannah Brand regarding Surfing England, to discuss the operations of this organisation and its goals for the future. And, how they are looking after their members during this trying time when everyone wants to hit the water for the spring tide. SURFING ENGLAND It was always the intention of Surfing England to be surfing’s leading NGB, in June 2017 after a

28 |

journey of almost a decade they were recognized by Sport England as just that. This followed the merging of Surfing GB with the English Surfing Federation at the end of 2016. Hannah explains that the body represents the entirety of the sport. Covering the disciplines of short board, long board, body board, body surf, knee board and stand up paddle board. Accredited by Sport England, England’s sports council, as well as the International Surfing Association and the European Surfing Federation their primary purpose is to support and develop the sport, its participants and its athletes. Operating as a membership organisation they offer services to surfers, affiliations to surf clubs, and accreditations to surf coaches and surf schools. At the elite level they operate the annual English Surfing Championships and take care of entering national teams to International events.

that certain things are managed and looked after. For example, Surfing England has been able to directly improve the quality of surfing by ensuring that their accredited surf schools are operating to governing body standards. This includes abiding to recommended coach-participant ratio and having quality equipment for the safe delivery of surf lessons.

“At grass roots level we also support surf clubs and help break down barriers to surfing,” Hannah says, “Educating on safety and etiquette and working to protect the environment and much more.”

SAFE SURFING “We strongly support the club scene in England,” she says, “And we are seeing more local competitions than ever before. All of which are run by incredible volunteers.” One of these is The Wave in Bristol which opened last year. Hannah says, “This venue will be a gamechanger for the sport as it offers our highest level surfers consistent waves for training and nailing certain manoeuvres. It is such an exciting time for the sport in England!”

HEALTHY SURFING COMMUNITY According to Hannah, their organisation came into fruition to serve the English surfing scene, with ambitions to ensure that they maintain a ‘healthy surfing community’ at all times which is inclusive and offers equal opportunities. “Since we have developed, we have a growing membership database, as well as a thriving hub of Accredited Surf Schools, Coaches and Affiliated Surf Clubs,” she says, “We proudly have team’s representing England on the world stage, in shortboard, longboard, SUP and Adaptive surfing!” As a national governing body, Surfing England is looking after surfing all up and down the English coast. From the depths of Cornwall’s brightest bohemians right up to the hardy cold-water surfers in the North-East. They also have a network running along the South Coast, hopping over the Isle of Wight and into London. The iconic sport of free-thinkers and free-spirits surfing has an attraction that is difficult to put into words if you’re not a surfer. However, it is important for instruction and health and safety,

The Wave is the brainchild of Founder, Nick Hounsfield, whose vision is at the heart of this £25 million project, which was nine years in the making. The Wave fully opened its doors and shores to the public on 4 November 2019. Using the Wavegarden Cove technology, The Wave provides up to a thousand waves of varying sizes and shapes every hour (roughly a new wave every ten seconds), with heights from 50cm to 180 cm. The 180m surfing lake is at its heart, but The Wave is not just about surfing. It’s about sharing incredible experiences with anyone who wants to enjoy them, in a naturally healthy space. It’s about improving health and wellbeing, helping people feel like the best version of themselves and having a shedload of fun in the process! SURFING APPEAL For Hannah, surfing is not like any other traditional sport. Surfing captures the attention of the physical body and trains the mind. She explains that many people surf for mindfulness and to enjoy the time immersed in nature and the wildness of the ocean. It is sport that supports a lifetime of activity with options available for any level or age. | 29

“A surfer might start off as a child on a bodyboard, then progress to a short board,” Hannah suggests, “Then move onto a long board, then a stand up paddle board and maybe go onto bodysurfing. Then again, there are as many pensioners spinning off the waves on shortboards as there are youngsters keeping to bodyboards!” She adds, “Surfing is hugely adaptable to support the individual’s needs, whether it is adapting for a disability, an impairment or old age there is always a way to get in the water, and that is what we love to facilitate.” ENGLAND’S BEST SPOTS TO SURF Arguably Cornwall has some of the best places to surf in England and it always takes the leading spot here, with world famous breaks such as Fistral Beach. However, throughout the wild winter, the South of England has seen some incredible surf, as has the North-East which benefits from the same offshore winds and swells from the North Sea that makes it a hub for renewable energy. For the dedicated surfer, travelling and seeking waves is all part of the experience. It is the chase to find the surf, get out of the wind, and seek those lesser known spots that make it such a passion for so many people. CHALLENGES Hannah reveals that surfing in the UK has seen quite a lot of changes over the last 15 years with different governing bodies. It has been great over the last 3 years to see Surfing England develop as a trusted NGB for the sport in England. “Our biggest challenge is that we do not yet receive core-funding, and currently rely on our base of incredible members and our commercial partners,” she says, “There is so much more we could do for the sport with funding, but all of these things take time. We are positive that the future is bright and will be reaching a new standard of awesomeness. Especially as surfing has finally been incorporated into the Olympics!” Granted the 2020 Olympics are currently postponed until it is safe to continue. As disappointing as this is for the UK team, at least they know that they have earned their way into the games when they reschedule the dates.

30 |

“During this time, it is important to keep our members updated with the latest information regarding the stay at home lockdown,” Hannah says, “This includes keeping our news page up to date as well as social media. If we all follow the guidance and stay at home this will be over sooner than later and we can return to the waves where we belong.” TEAM MEMBERS Four core staff members are employed, two of which are full time. The training offered for their staff is a combination of on the job training as well as utilising some free of charge workshops that support not for profit companies. Hannah admits that they are very fortunate that their staff team have wide-ranging skill sets and knowledge pool that can be shared amongst the group. Of course, they are all surfers themselves too. 2020 This year is going to be a big one for the business as their goals are to charge on with all operational areas across the organisation. According to Hannah, their big projects include developing their own custom-built membership system which will in-turn support them to generate revenue. “We also have big goals for growing, developing and delivering our events,” she says, “One of which ran on 14th-15th March passed and was hugely successful. Our other big ambitions are to start receiving some core funding to further develop our services and the accessibility for our members.” EMAIL: WEBSITE: Article on page

24 | 31

Five Top Surfing Apps for Summer


TOP Surfing Apps for Summer For those with busy lifestyles who have to manage their surfing time around work/life and not the other way around, knowing where to find the best swells can make all the difference. There is little more disruptive to a surfer’s calm than missing the perfect waves, because you’ve gone to the wrong beach. Even if surfing is currently off the table due to Lockdown, summer is just around the corner and surfers will always want to know where the waves are. So, to keep you updated here are the best apps to keep appraised of the best tides.

32 |


True Surf

Providing the important details of all the beaches near your location using GPS location to your phone, Surf Stoked is perfect for those who like surfing and like beaches. The user is able to search through filtered regions or by city on the app and it allows you to save your favourite spots with just a click. Additionally, it also gives information about surf lifesavers, guards and important such details of your chosen beaches. Giving you all the essentials before you hit the waves.



Providing detailed forecasts of weather and surfing conditions, Coasting is a useful tool to have if you’re looking to plan a surf trip. With the app the user can save their beaches and see their forecast anytime, anywhere and is considered one of the top apps for surfers around the world. Providing relevant and useful information the premium purchase on the app provides features like sunrise and sunset times, water temperatures and even recommendations.



For those studious surfers that like to log their surf, track skills and more iSurfer is perfect. Users are able to easily track their progress in surfing, allowing for steady progression to the next level. To aid this the app has a lot of videos and advice to help users make the most out of it. The user also can shop for the best gear in the app without having to leave it. Making it easy, straightforward and convenient.


NOAA Buoy & Tide Data

Designed for surfers, Tide Data gives weather forecasts, tide information and moon phase information. The iOS surfing app uses GPS or even manually entered locations and users can save their favourite beach spots in the app and track the forecasts later.


Tide Graph

The Tide Graph app boasts over five thousand locations and beaches of surfing in the US, including both modern and legacy locations. A great tool for any water sport enthusiasts as well as for boaters. The app uses harmonic predictions from various U.S. coastal stations and provides them in an interactive graph to its users. An internet connection is a must to see the latest tide graphs owned by U.S. stations only.

There you have it, five great surfing apps to make the most of. If we missed any that you think should be included drop us a link. | 33


Master Vlogger Carly Rowena on Lockdown Training Balancing health and lifestyle, motherhood and a career as well as being an advocate for personal freedoms and expression, Carly Rowena has become an icon in the fitness and lifestyle community. A model of self-respect and openness, her videos and vlogging content is enjoyed by over four hundred thousand subscribers and touches on many important topics and not just at home fitness. Carly first turned to YouTube after years of working in an industry that was not satisfying her ambitions and wasn’t making her happy at all. She reveals that the turning point was when she searched in Google “What is Carly’s dream job?” and all that the search engine was able to produce was a YouTube video about Necker Island. “So, I made it my mission to figure out my own talent and treated my videos as a way to discover what I am passionate about,” she explains, “However, I never really expected to become a personal trainer.” For eight years now she has been crafting what she refers to as her little corner of the internet and during that time it has seen some serious pivots from side to side. Carly started out teaching in a local 24-Hour Gym and working all the hours possible to make ends meet. Creating her videos in her spare time she made use of platforms like Skype, Zoom and Facebook to help train her clients when they weren’t able to make it to the gym. “I was able to use these platforms to reach and train people all around the world,” she says, “And this meant I could plan my day around different time zones and help more people achieve their goals.”

34 |

ALONG WITH THE JOURNEY Being comfortable and confident in your own body is an important aspect of Carly’s vlogs which serve as much as a journal of her own journey as instruction videos. Amongst the workout videos entitled “Carly’s Abs”- (demonstrating how to gain and maintain arguably the most impressive eight pack in the industry) there are other gems regarding dieting, sexual health, becoming a mother and training in parenthood. The vlogs are interesting, engaging and unafraid to tackle sensitive topics that have affected Carly’s life. For many subscribers who have gone through similar issues, be it with health, fitness or life in general, this has meant a great deal and combated the feeling of loneliness that can sometimes come with dealing with our problems.

“I used to upload two vlogs a week but since having my little girl and only being able to work during her naps, it’s now once a week,” she says, “I also write my blog, share live workouts, post on Instagram, create content for brands and train my online clients.” SYSTEMATIC APPROACH TO VLOGGING According to Carly, creating the vlogs is really a systematic process with completion time depending entirely on the type of video being created. Carly explains that if it is a sit down “chatty” video like her “Sexy Series” this can be around 30 minutes to film and then an hour to edit, upload and schedule but if it’s a vlog of everything that happened that week, a workout or travel vlog is can take a full day or longer. LIFESTYLE AND FITNESS Carly admits that it’s been a challenge to balance lifestyle and fitness and that she can be quite hard on herself when she’s not doing enough. Since Covid-19 has meant that everyone is staying home she is only really able to get work done during her daughter’s two one hour nap times or before she wakes in the morning. So currently the day starts at 5am which is when she answers emails, edits and schedules posts. Then, it’s Mum Mode for a bit which entails reading books and making a general playful mess before putting her down for her morning nap and sweating through an online CrossFit class or going live with one of her own workouts. “I fit in some shower time before she wakes up and then we go for our one outdoor walk to escape the cabin fever and give Steven, our French bulldog a good run,” she says, “Then after lunch we’ll play in our garden or create obstacles or games before her second nap which is when I have online clients, Skype calls and film for my channels, then it’s dinner, bath time, bed for Jax and finishing up anything I didn’t get done during the day. I tend to switch off at 8:30pm for meditation and reading a book alongside my husband.” Carly’s other half is also a fitness vlogger of some repute and this has made their daily lives unpredictable to say the least, with their weekly

schedules changing at the drop of a hat. But fitness is one thing they don’t really speak about. “It’s just like if you live with someone who gives massages or paints nails, we barely talk about exercise when together!” she says, adding, “However, filming ourselves has rubbed off on our daughter Jax as she loves to steal my phone and talk to herself on video so we might have another vlogger on the horizon!” LOCKDOWN We asked Carly if she has seen any changes in her viewership since the Lockdown. She says that while we are all in such a negative situation, she has noticed many positives online. Obviously, more and more people are at home looking for things to do so naturally viewer time and reach has grown as well as the activity on the comment sections. Viewers are taking the time to really engage, question and share their favourite platforms which is wonderful. And during this increase in demand for quality content and engaging viewers what should professional vloggers and other industry icons keep in mind when working with their audience? | 35

“It’s important to know your purpose and not to sell out,” she says, “It can be hard to stick to your own purpose when brand deals come around or you notice other topics trending but it’s important to be authentic to yourself. And, when working with brands it is even more important to get them to understand who you are and what truly works with your followers.” PIVOTTING Considering the sudden, global shift that has occurred in people’s habits over the last month there have been a lot of changes that Carly has made to her brand and how she engages her audience. The internet is full of people going live, sharing workouts and creating content and it’s become quite overwhelming. According to her up to 90% of the content that creators share online is free as only content with associated ads earn them anything. With so many brands cancelling all events and brand deals she admits that she is relieved to have a revenue stream from her online clients that is away from social media. “I’m using this time to make my corner of the internet a positive and realistic one and hope to inspire people to use this time to finish the things they promised themselves they would,” she says, “Be that to take up a new hobby or simply rest and recover. COMBATTING CABIN FEVER A billion people are currently staying indoors on Lockdown and there is an array of side effects that are for the moment going under the radar. Many people are struggling to cope with being confined. To help deal with this Carly has been making positive suggestions to her clients and one of the main ones is the importance of changing their environment.

letting the rest of the world in. “If you’re finding everything a little heavy, use the mute, unfollow or simply get your apps to time out,” she says, “Read more books, play a positive playlist, dance with your loved ones, exercise, play boardgames and create pub quizzes with your friends over house party or Zoom. Do whatever it takes to not let things get on top of you.” EXERCISE GUIDANCE A firm believer in the importance of creating your own space, Carly herself makes sure that her exercises spaces always involve a healthy environment. For her home workout she puts a yoga mat next to the window to make sure she gets a lot of natural light and sets herself a specific time to train. Exercise isn’t just something you pick up and put back down and Carly has learnt that you need to make it as important to your day as eating, sleeping and going to the toilet. You’re far more likely to stick to it if you form a habit based on repetition. “Figure out if you’re a morning or evening person and exercise at the right time for you. Invest in your own little space. This doesn’t take a lot, a yoga mat, placed near a window for natural light can make all the difference. A good playlist is important too as is a plan that you can follow to map your progress,” She says. Of course, during this time Carly believes that everyone should take things at their own pace and not expect too much. “It’s also perfectly fine if ’the only thing you did today was breathe,” she says. WEBSITE:

“For those who don’t have a garden that they can enjoy as it gets warmer, you can bring the outside indoors,” she says, “Aim to let light in wherever you can and brighten up dark spaces with fairy lights, and plants and challenge yourself to be awake for an hour before you look at your phone.”

YOUTUBE: Carlyrowena

This last point is something she advocates strongly. She believes from experience that it allows the mind to create a little forcefield before

FACEBOOK: CarlyRowena/

36 |

TWITTER: INSTAGRAM: carlyrowena/ | 37


How brands will survive the lockdown It’s time to pivot and change your message Interview with Em Sheldon of Emtalks

Em began her blog in 2012 and started her Youtube channel soon after but was too nervous about having her face on she camera so she quit for a few years. But, upon returning she’s built up an impressively active audience of over 116k Instagram followers, 38k on Twitter and 78k on Youtube and has become a mainstay in the daily content consumption of her audience. TAKING RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR BRAND A fulltime content creator, Em has diversified her offering beyond merely the vlog and blogging arena. Ensuring the development and growth of every aspect of her career. It was very clear to her from the start that she had to consider her blog as a business enterprise and not merely a casual website. “You have to take responsibility for your brand,” she says, “So, as well as acting as a consultant to other brands and businesses regarding social media, I also sell Instagram filters through my website. A great deal of my time and work is spent showing brands how to utilise social media.” Her Instagram filters can be seen at www. and according to her, she has seen a rise in website traffic as well as engagement on her social media. People are sending a lot more messages and are keen to chat and ask for recommendations on products, recipes and health and fitness. She says that this sort of engagement drives the need for development of these social media platforms to ensure that they are consistently offering new and engaging content for their users. This in turn causes the landscape to change and a surprising number of brands lack the flexibility to adapt at the necessary pace. This is where

38 |

Em can help, providing workable solutions for engagement, tool usage and trending topics. “Right now, people are sat at home and interacting more in content as a means of connecting,” she explains, “On the flip side however, viewers are seeing so much content at the moment that they are wanting something that is outside of the norm to give them a sense of escapism. The brands that are able to adapt to these changes in viewer expectation are the ones that will flourish when the lockdown ends.” BEING PRESENT With a multi-faceted audience that respond to the varied subject matter on, Em

has been making sure that she is present during this period. Not only on her fitness videos and vlogs but also her blog entries regarding lifestyle, diet and interest pieces such as “How to Support Small Business During Covid 19”. There is a call for people with an established audience to step up to the plate to lead, motivate and be present during this time of crisis to keep spirits high. “Everyone in the world is feeling anxious and lonely,” she says, “A global call for self-isolation is something that none of us have ever seen before and it’s more than just missing a visit to a coffee shop or missing the gym.” Em is spending more time than ever chatting to her audience, making sure they know that everyone is in the same boat and encouraging people to reach out on social media and be as present as possible. This is the time for you to reconnect with that school friend you’ve been Facebook friends with since graduation, but you haven’t spoken to them once. Now is the time to say “Hi.” “I also do a lot of home workouts to hopefully inspire people to move more and stay active,” she says, “As well as showing lots of easy, free healthy recipes to keep people trying new things during this period.” EMS PHILOSOPHY Em has a very simple philosophy when it comes to health. Move more and eat better, not less. Consistently trying to change the mindset that exists around eating food she is constantly responding to messages from people saying things like: “you eat so much” or “I’m scared of carbs,” or “How should I cut calories?”.

it is down to the professionals in the industry to change this. “A message focussed on health and not merely appearance needs to be put out there,” she says, “And as part of this I think we need more education on the importance of movement, exercise and stretching. There also needs to be a united front about developing and maintaining a balanced diet..” PRODUCING CONTENT The length of time to produce her quality content really depends on the project at hand. For example, Em reveals that for a weekly blog she will film every day for five days and then edit at night. This ends up taking around seven hours of editing and probably five hours of filming. A blog post usually takes around two hours depending on the topic and a sit down YouTube video can take anywhere from one hour to three to film and then the edit is another few hours on top of that. Of course, it does depend on how long the video is. HER OWN TRAINING Regards to her own training Em exercises at least three to six times a week although that does depend on her schedule. Usually this includes a mixture of spin classes, Blaze classes and Kobox, alongside her own gym workouts. “I go to David Lloyd and their strength and cardio Blaze HIIT classes have changed my life,” she says, “They are utterly fantastic and get my heart

There is still a great deal of misunderstanding and pseudoscience regarding diet and fitness out there. Much of which has no basis on any sort of professional research. This makes it dangerous and people could be hurting themselves without realising it and Em believes that | 39

pumping like nothing else. I also adore Kobox, a London based boxing gym with the best vibes, the best music, such incredible instructors and it gives you a full body sweat.” Em explains that for her it is all about the endorphins and feeling like part of a community. Most of her favourite gyms are offering free workouts via Instagram live at the moment which has shown her just how much she used to love working out from home. “It has also proven to me that I can still do it. I find it quite refreshing having a gym closed and having to mix my routine up too,” she says, “I’ve started running again, doing a few 10 mile runs to kick myself off, I wouldn’t say it’s my favourite activity as I find it mentally boring but it’s good to try new things. Generally, I’m more of an explosive, get it done quick and fast kind of workout girl.” This has helped mitigate the current issues of boredom and confinement that everyone is feeling and have encouraged her to set a good example for her audience. Sharing workout videos and providing lots of free, super easy recipes which need very basic ingredients has proved as valuable to her as it has to her viewers. HOW IS COVID-19 GOING TO CHANGE THE FACE OF HEALTH AND FITNESS BLOGS? Em believes there is no doubt that the current hurdle we’re climbing will change the way many industries work. For hers especially she can see some changes on the horizon that could shape the future of vlogging. “I think we will see even more apps and e-books launched by fitness influencers because it’s hard to make a living from giving free recipes and workouts,” she says, “Obviously

40 |

the free content helps grow social channels but they’re not monetizable which is why we are seeing so many people use their knowledge in purchasable guides and virtual personal training sessions!” THREE LOCKDOWN EXERCISES Below Em has kindly shared her best Lockdown exercises. Three solid moves that get everything working. Squats: because you can do them body weight, jump them out or pulse them down to get a deep burn. Lunges: because similar to squats, you can do so much with them whether you’re jumping for cardio, slowly pulsing for a burn or doing weighted lunges. Plank: because you can rock it back and forth, do plank toe taps or hold it static.

Article on page



Helping champions squeeze out that last one percent Matt Dickens of Atlas Health Performance For over a decade Matt Dickens has been working with professional athletes ranging from rugby players to the Olympic elite. Associated with the very finest athletes, his work has been accredited with helping these remarkable individuals reach their remarkable standards. THE COMMON DENOMINATORS Having identified the common denominators required for individuals to reach their optimal performance Matt also understands the importance of these elements being applied in a personable and tailored fashion. An accredited coach with the UK Strength and Conditioning Association, Matt also has an MSC in Strength and Conditioning from St Mary’s University and his approach to training and coaching is backed by the strongest scientific evidence and research into human performance. His business, Atlas Health and Performance has grown from this fertile background and is the go-to for the industry. ONLINE Very present online, Matt believes in communicating with his audience, finding that with the savvy use of social media his lessons and experience can benefit a far wider community of people. With this in mind he creates as much content as any influencer online although he says he does not consider himself a vlogger or a blogger.

“I just like to share good quality training content and engage with my audience via Instagram,” Matt explains, “I’ve been a lot more active in that space over the last year and have seen general engagement

42 |

grow. It also is helpful to my clients to see this content online.” His main profession is strength and conditioning coaching, and he explains that his success rate with many athletes from many different areas has been the real factor of his business growth. Having successfully coached and worked with athletes such as Chris Mears who earned an Olympic Gold in the 2016 games, and Matt Miles who is the captain of the England Counties Rugby. The influence that he has had on these careers has made him a very strong name in the field. Of course, thanks to the current Lockdown, things have had to evolve, and he has seen a significant increase in the engagement from his online audience. Everyone’s main escape at the moment is via the internet and for those sporting people who are looking to improve their training when Lockdown ends, they’ve had more time to do research and to ask questions about who will help them get that extra percent out of their training. Matt has around 4300 followers on Instagram and 1,500 on Twitter and while this is a modest number in comparison to some vloggers and fitness bloggers it is an audience of real relevance to the sporting industry.

Matt has around 4300 followers on Instagram and 1,500 on Twitter and while this is a modest number in comparison to some vloggers and fitness bloggers it is an audience of real relevance to the sporting industry. “I’ve had loads of new followers since I’ve started taking live training sessions on Instagram,” he says, “As well as a lot more people reaching out and asking for help. The live sessions are a new thing for me but it’s great to see around 100 people tuning in to each session. Then hearing how each

person is benefitting, really makes it worthwhile.” With most of his audience being made up of athletic individuals who have suffered greatly with their activities cut down and their routines disrupted, he has been in an ideal position to help them focus on using their time as an opportunity to come back fitter and stronger. “The daily live sessions are structured towards specific goals in physical performance and are not just “exercise classes”,” he says, “I’ve been writing a great deal of personalised programmes to ensure people have a plan that works for them and will see them leave Lockdown having accomplished something.” TRAINING PHILOSOPHY Matt reveals that his philosophy starts by encouraging people to be great “movers” first and that, to get fit, you have to focus on what you enjoy doing. This will naturally motivate you to improve and get stronger. “I prefer the term ‘training’ to exercise,” he says, “This gives us goals to strive for and a way of measuring our progress. People refer to having to do “exercise” as something generic that has to be done and lacks focus. Usually someone “exercises” when they’ve been told that they need to. Whereas, training is something you do with | 43

purpose. You train in martial arts, you train for rugby, swimming, gym. Training is full of focus, dedication and is very goal orientated. Definition makes all the difference.” This leads into the manner in which he trains his clients, be it online or in person. As a highly energetic person, Matt’s enthusiasm rubs off on people and pushes them to put their own energy where they need it. But he doesn’t believe in trying to motivate people. “I think if you really want something you know you’ve got to work for it,” he says, “And you’ll be willing to put the work into it, but you won’t think of it as work. Instead of saying I “motivate” people I’d rather say I help people channel that energy in the right way.” Of course, people are easily motivated and inspired by Matt, however it is worth mentioning that the clientele he tends to work with are people who have already been putting in the work to develop themselves. His clients’ usual needs involve them squeezing out the last drops of juice that will make all the difference to their performance.

44 |

“I help athletes and athletic individuals improve their physical performance,” Matt says, “This has to be done in a scientific way to keep things safe and can mean anything from running faster to getting stronger and certainly fitter. I help them build specific plans that work for their lifestyle and transfer it to performing better at the sport they love.” CONVERTING FROM FACE TO FACE TO ONLINE Matt had already been offering online sessions and courses for some time before Lockdown occurred, so he found himself in the position to help right away. However, this has still required some development and learning on his part. He explains that training programmes always take a little planning, as can videos. “I’m getting more efficient at the creative side and posts are now less time consuming now that I have a few templates and found my feet as it were,” he says.

HIS OWN TRAINING Knowing that the proof is in the pudding and especially in this industry you have to be able to lead from the front, Matt values a variety of training options to keep himself as fit as possible. His favourite is speed and agility training which he has found transfers well to rugby while in the gym he mostly lifts free weights.

“I use explosive movements like Olympic weightlifting and various jumps,” Matt says, “But I love all kinds of sports, rugby and mixed martial arts, climbing, cycling and running. I like exploring and challenging my body with movement flows and generally playing however I can. You can’t be afraid to try something new and just give it a go.” LOCKDOWN TRAINING Health and Fitness is so important during this time and Matt is confident many people will use

this time at home to explore how they can train with just their bodyweight and maybe discover new skills like handstands. It’s a great time to understand how their bodies can move; rather than just repeating the same weight routines in the gym. He also believes it is a great opportunity to see how we can reach wider audiences online and hopefully some great new platforms with high quality content will emerge. RECOMMENDED TRAINING And what would Matt’s top lockdown training methods be? “It depends on who it’s for obviously,” he says, “But for me it would definitely be sprints, heavy clean and jerk and Turkish get ups, but for anyone else it needs to be what they enjoy doing and takes them towards their goals.” | 45

Charles Bronson The Lockdown Fitness King If you’ve had the pleasure of seeing Tom Hardy’s film Bronson, you’ll know that Charles Bronson is considered to be one of the most violent criminals in England. The central focus of many documentaries regarding violence in prisons, treatment of prisoners in England as well as psychiatric studies, he is a man who has intrigued as many people as he has terrified. Whether you are a fan of his incredible facial hair, or the story of how he basically punched his way to fame (a lifelong ambition of his), or perhaps you’re an aficionado of his art work, one thing is certain, Bronson knew how to stay physically strong. Without access to any real equipment, on account of him spending most of his time in solitary confinement, Bronson had to learn how to exercise efficiently. In all fairness, this makes him one of the most prolific lockdown exercisers in the world. *Interesting fact, Tom Hardy struggled to keep up with Bronson’s workout routine! BODY WEIGHT WORKOUTS THE MAN Apart from a few brief stints on the other side of the bars, Charles Bronson (born Charles Salvador) has been serving time since 1974. Many believe that exercise was the only way that Bronson was able to overcome the difficulties both mental and physical that come with solitary confinement. The finest example of what a good regime is capable of he has gained an almost super human strength and makes claims of being able to crank out one hundred and seventy two pushups in a minute, pick up a pool table and bending a steel prison door with his bare hands. While some of these claims may seem exaggerated, the records he has set while in prison for exercise are not. For example, he holds the record for most push ups in sixty minutes. A pecshearing 1,727!

46 |

At the moment, with gyms around the world being closed now for over a month, millions of gym goers have been at a loss with how to train. But the benefit of a good body weight workout is that it can be done absolutely anywhere. In your bedroom, living room, garden or in solitary confinement. Strength and cardio can be trained in just one workout, either by increasing the speed at which the exercises are performed or by shaving down the rests periods. PLANNING THE EXERCISES Planning ahead is important and working in a number of variations of each exercise and the order in which they are done will keep things interesting. The below can keep you busy for

over a month and small adjustments make all the difference, but these are some of the best to start with. The good old fashioned Bronson style exercises that he used to create his legendary strength. SQUATS!! A biggy in the training world and one of the alltime “must do” leg workouts. The squat is one of the most basic yet effective athletic movements. In just one exercise, you work your quads, hamstrings, glutes, hips, and inner thighs.

PUSHUPS!! In Bronson’s book “Solitary Fitness” he cites that he performs 2000 push ups a day. We wouldn’t suggest you start that way, because you probably have more to do with your day than sit in a cell and stare at a wall. But it is important to have goals, and this is completely achievable. If you start with ten pushups in the morning, ten at lunch and ten in the evening and each day aim to increase that number by five or more, you’ll soon be whacking out a couple of thousand in a day. VARIABLE PUSHUPS

VARIABLE SQUATS Prisoner Squat. Simple and straightforward. Place your hands behind your head to maintain posture, squat down until your thighs are below parallel to your knees and come up. The old “ass to the grass” adage is a good one for this. Any weight will do. Barbells are often not a usual household item however anything that can be held in the arms can add weight to this exercise. If you have a gym bag and some books, you’ll be surprised at fast things can get heavy. Squat Jumps. No good if you’re tall and live in a small house, but this is a plyometric version of the squat which helps build explosiveness and engage those twitch muscles. Prison squat to the lowest position and then from that position jump as high off the ground as you can. Then, upon landing immediately sink into another squat and jump again. With this one make sure you control the descent because this exercise can hurt the knees if you’re not warmed up or in control. Pistol Squat. A one-legged full squat. A basic squat with one leg stuck out in front of you. It’ll take a couple of months to be able to do this effectively and even then don’t feel bad if you need to stabilise yourself with a hand against the wall. Rest assured that when we’re allowed to socialise this will be a party trick you’ll come back to again and again.

The main muscles worked with a pushup include the chest, anterior (front) deltoid and the triceps. By making minor adjustments of the hands you can increase the difficulty with ease to work the muscles at different angles. Narrow or Wide Hand Placement. Adjust the position of the hands to emphasize different muscle groups. For example, narrow hand pushups works the triceps while wider hand pushups focusses on the pectorals. Hindu Push-up. This is a dynamic full-body movement that will build strength and flexibility in your chest, shoulders, back, hips, and triceps. Position yourself by standing with your feet slightly wider than your shoulders. Bend down and place your hands on the floor while keeping your arms and legs straight. So that you look like an upside down V shape with your bum in the air and your head near the ground. Scoop yourself forward as if you want to polish the floor with your chest until your hips are close to the ground. Get a good stretch of your back and then reverse the movement back to the starting position. Repeat. Handstand Push-up. Undoubtedly one of the most effective shoulder workouts the handstand push up needs only a wall to perform it on. Simply assume a handstand position against the wall like you did when you were a child. Then once in a comfortable position you slowly, with control, bend the arms and lower the head to the floor and then push yourself up again. The strain on the shoulders, upper back, arms and core are constant on this one so rep it out until you fail. Once you’ve conquered that, don’t use the wall. | 47

then the other. Great variations and good for repping out sets.

PULL UPS!! Granted this is a tricky one if you don’t have something to pull up on, but without a doubt pull ups are the most applied back workout and work all of the major back muscles. Even for seasoned gym goers, the body weight pull up is considered a real show of strength. And it works everything from your forearms, biceps, chest, traps and your lats (the wing muscles). What you’ll need is somewhere to hang, and if you don’t have that you can purchase a pull up bar for the door for less than £30 on Amazon. If you can’t do that, then anything that you can grip onto and hang from, say a doorframe (workout for your fingertips) or a jungle gym or tree branch will be more than sufficient. VARIABLE PULL UPS Just like the push up, pull ups can be modified to work different muscles groups or to make the exercise more difficult. A small amount of variation can result in a big difference and this really is a “must do” exercise. Chin-up. Hold the bar with your palms facing you and a fairly narrow grip, lift yourself until your chin is over the bar. Direct strain will be on your biceps and your lats. Keep the motion smooth. Mixed Grip Pull-up. One hand grips the bar overhand and the other underhand. Do five and then swap the grip and do five. Repeat. Commando Pull-up. If you’ve seen Rocky, you’ll recognise this one. It includes an underhand grip with one hand and an overhand grip with the other. Pulling up with the head on one side and

48 |

Typewriter Pull-up. Grab the bar with an overhand grip slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Pull yourself up until your sternum is at the bar. Now, move your body toward one hand, taking some of the weight off the opposite hand which should straighten. Keeping your sternum level return your body to the centre and do the same with the other side. Then return to centre. That is one rep done. *You do not need to make the sound of a typewriter ding but you get extra points if you do. Narrow/Wide Grip. You can adjust your grip width to focus on different muscle groups. Try doing pullups with your hands right next to each other or as far apart from each other as you can. One-handed Pull-up. One handed pull ups immediately puts you in a different level of awesomeness. Towel Pull-ups. Hang two towels from your bar and grip one in each hand. Pull yourself up. Great for grip strength and especially good if you want those big forearms. DIPS!! A mainstay for anyone wanting big arms, dips work the triceps, pecs, shoulders, forearms and core. You don’t need a fancy dip rig to do them. All you need is a chair or a bed. Place your hands on other side of a chair and prop your feet on the bed and lower your bum to the floor and then push up. Kind of like a reverse push up.

VARIABLE DIPS Dips are a simple muscle blaster. They don’t take much skill, but there are some variations of them that are awesomely impressive. HORIZONTAL BAR DIPS Frankly speaking, if you can do this exercise you are already at a good level of fitness as it requires a supreme strength of core, grip and control. With a horizontal bar behind you, grip the bar with both hands and do a basic dip as many times as you can. If you can manage five in a row, you’re in a small percentage of people who can and may potentially have heat vision and be bullet proof. HANGING LEG RAISES!!! Blasting the abs, obliques, intercostals the hanging leg raise also targets the quads, hips, forearms and shoulders. Increasing grip strength and resilience. VARIABLE HANGING LEGS Straight Leg Raises. Grab and hang from a bar with a slightly wider than shoulder-width overhand grip. Keeping your knees straight, raise legs by flexing hips until they are completely flexed, or knees are well above hips. Return until hips are extended downward. Hanging Windshield Wiper. Perform a straight leg raise, but when your feet come to the top positions, brace your abs and rotate your legs to one side as far as you can. Rotate to the other side. Repeat. *Again, you don’t have to make a sound like a windscreen wiper, but if you’re alone you may want to try. Bent Knee Leg Raises. If you can’t do a straight leg raise, you can modify it by bending your knees and raising them into your chest. BURPEES!! If you’re doing these right you’ll hate them! You will see all professional athletes lauding burpees, from footballers, CrossFit champs and military trainers. The burpee is a full movement that activates every muscle group from your ankles to your ears! From a standing position go to a squat position with your hands on the floor and kick your legs back into a push up position. Immediately return

your feet back to the squat position. Jump up as high as possible from this position and reach for the sky. Upon landing repeat. LOCKDOWN WORKOUTS One thing is clear is that Bronson loved variation in his workouts and throughout his training he utilised different routines, collections and challenges. From athletic champions to exquisitely moustached prison thugs, one thing unites them all in their training. The best results require you to shake things up. So below we’ve got a series of challenges for you to try. ONE HOUR BLAST Pick one exercise for each body group and set a timer for sixty minutes and aim to get six hundred reps within sixty minutes. How you break them down into sets is entirely up to you but aim to smash out six hundred within that hour on that one exercise. Monday – Legs- Prison Squats Tuesday – Shoulders – Handstand Pushup Wednesday – Back- Commando Grip Pull Up Thursday – Chest- Wide Hand Push ups Friday – Arms – Dips and Chin Ups Saturday – Body Challenge- Burpees Sunday – Rest and recovery 20 sets of 30 reps. | 49



Some years ago, this was a very popular Youtube challenge and it has never gone away thanks to its effectiveness. It can be worked with any exercise, but for example on a chest day you will do a basic push up. You put on the song “Bring Sally Up” and then on every “bring sally up” you straighten the arms then on “bring sally down” you bend the arms but never allow your torso to touch the ground. During the bridge of the song you have to hover and hold the position and then repeat. It is an absolute killer and works the muscles in a completely different way. Lots of fun and a good challenge. Can be done with squats, pull ups and even burpees.

The monotony of Lockdown is what a lot of people have found affects them the most. However, exercise does not necessarily have to happen in one set hour. For Ten on Thirty, every thirty minutes you do ten reps of an exercise. So, let’s say from 8am to 8pm every thirty minutes you do ten reps of that day’s exercise.

GERMAN TENS A popular exercise for an equipped gym, for German Tens you basically use one exercise and aim to get ten sets of ten reps with a sixty second rest in between. Pick two muscle groups i.e. “legs and shoulders” and work one muscle group at a time through the sets until you get to one hundred and then stretch and start on the second muscle group. This exercise works best with big compound exercises that work multiple muscle groups, so it works perfectly for the exercises listed above.

50 |

Monday – Legs- Prison Squats Tuesday – Shoulders – Handstand Pushup Wednesday – Back- Commando Grip Pull Up Thursday – Chest- Wide Hand Push ups Friday – Arms – Dips and Chin Ups Saturday – Body Challenge- Burpees Sunday – Rest and recovery 10 reps every thirty minutes. That would mean that over a twelve hour period you will have effectively done 240 reps of each exercise throughout that day! Plus, this particular approach keeps the mind and body always anticipating exercise and so the body will start keeping itself in a highly energised state which will help keep the metabolism and energy levels high!

To feature in our next great issue of sportsider email us

KickOff@3 on Crisis Management communities and the police authorities within those postcodes. However, like many industries and organisations that have based themselves on getting children and young adults playing sport and more active outside, they’ve never had to face a crisis like the global covid-19 lockdown. Ashley reveals however that he was not surprised at how resilient their community proved to be. A couple of months ago the presiding “call” for parents and communities was to make sure that children spent time playing outside with their friends and not sitting inside stuck on their consoles. Suddenly this has shifted to keeping them indoors and not socialising. KickOff@3 have been sport community leaders for a long time, bringing a great sense of purpose and family to communities in and outside of London. We got in touch with KickOff@3’s co-founders Michael Wallace and Ashley Levien to discuss the message that they are sending to the members of their sporting community. Also to touch on how teamwork and focus is the key to winning this game. JUST ANOTHER CHALLENGE Ashley, who beyond the realm of KickOff@3 is a bus driver in London and has been working throughout the lockdown says, “I think it is a difficult and trying time where many people are feeling helpless with the situation,” he explains, “However it is something that we are more than capable of getting through.” He highlights how their community, which he co-founded with police officer Michael Wallace as a direct means of getting children off the streets and into sporting games, has always been highly sociable. Since they were founded in 2017 their entire approach has been centred around bringing different area codes and communities together in unity. Their use of football (and also basketball with TipOff@3) and their tournaments have proved a highly effective tool for bridging the gap between

52 |

“It is just another challenge,” he says, “We work with some communities where knife crime, domestic violence and gang related trouble are all part of people’s lives. Sport has brought them together and made them very tough. The work we’ve put in on the field has made them stronger off it.” SAME MESSAGE, DIFFERENT FIELD There are a few things that have had to be managed. KickOff@3 had a focal point on football because the founders grew up playing the sport, but there was just as much chance it could have been rugby related or volleyball. At the core of their community was the messages that they gave to their members. This has defined the success of the group, installing philosophies that hard work and patience pays off. That a person’s health is more valuable than any amount of money and that we are all responsible for our own happiness. Now that they aren’t able to use a good kick-around or a tournament to do this and with many of their future tournaments now being rescheduled, the message has had to be related in a different method and this has seen the founders and ambassadors turn to social media. “We founded KickOff@3 in 2017,” he says, “So we have always used the power of social media to connect with our ambassadors, members and organisers. It has always been an invaluable tool. What has changed though is that we need to get our messages across to young people and it’s difficult to engage on the same level.”

BEING PRODUCTIVE Their social media message has become one of reinforcing key messages of keeping safe and healthy. One of the main things for Ashley is the importance of educating young people during this time. The schools aren’t opened so they need to be educating themselves and keeping their minds active. He also thinks this is the perfect opportunity to teach young adults some important things that they won’t learn in the classroom. “Some other areas I think that would be perfect for kids to be educated on right now are fundamental life skills,” he says, “Things like money management, which is not generally taught at school. Taxes, the importance of saving and how to prepare for job interviews. The sort of important things that many of these kids will need when they are looking to get jobs.” A pragmatic approach, taken by parents, to structure their children’s days will help them greatly in making this lockdown a productive period. Otherwise, a lot of young people will just be stuck at home on their consoles. Not that Ashley is against the idea of children playing video games.

factor. They’re still engaged, competitive, mentally active and social. Especially at times like this it’s important that we do whatever it takes to keep sane.” MANAGING THE WORKLOAD Delivering the right message across social media and making sure that their presence is properly felt is a massive undertaking. Co-founder Michael Wallace has found himself balancing his time between his role as a community police officer and a key figure in KickOff@3. He explains that they have been working with a number of key members and partners as well as Black Wallstreet Media. Working with this company they have been channelling many empowering stories through social media to their various members to encourage and inspire and create engagement. “The main messages right now are staying safe and doing whatever we’re told to keep the curve down,” he says, “Keeping a positive mindset and being as tolerant as possible.”

“One of the things that I used to do when I was running my own social inclusion organization,” Ashley recalls, “Is we used to get young people together, whenever the weather was bad and we would play FIFA, in a classroom with a projector. Doing stuff like that can be very beneficial as it keeps young people engaged and has that fun | 53

According to Mike the response to their social endeavours has been very good, but it is a full time job and they can’t do it alone. With this in mind, he reveals that Covid 19 has proved to be a great way to test the resilience and commitment of your partners.

health high. KickOff@3 have been signposting people to them because they offer easily accessible online assistance and training. Mike explains that this is a good time for them to use their influence and channel people through to the experts in different fields.


“Another thing,” he adds, always keen to highlight those important businesses that they work with, “Our football tournaments are all postponed, however the Brent Factor which is a music platform for young people have stepped in an offered a competitive edge. Many of our members are multi-talented with many of them being good at music and natural performers. We’ve been putting them in touch so that during this time of isolation they have the cause and motivation to develop these other skills.”

“Times like this help galvanise strength and support,” he says, “It shows how much someone believes in you and what you are doing by the way that they support you and your mission. We’ve seen some partners really pushing the message on our behalf and others who have not.” He adds that as revealing as this is, it is understandable and that there can be no hard feelings. Everyone is doing what they can to get through this period of global uncertainty. “Another part of our communication strategy involves releasing daily videos filmed by our ambassadors,” he says, “These include the likes of Paul Canoville, Rodger East, Marcus Gayle and Shane Sandiford who have made themselves available to champion our vision. Also, in all our areas in the country we’ve been using police leads. These officers know their communities better than we do and they have been recording videos and extending the messages about staying safe, staying at home, channelling your health, exercise, mental health and well-being.” ALWAYS CONNECT WITH EXPERTS The Thrive Programme and the Ollie Foundation Charity have been lending support to the communities to help keep the levels of mental

54 |

Members can get involved by uploading a video of themselves singing and performing/dancing and the judges have been judging these online. Their platform and the included performers have attracted attention from New York, and it has proved to be a fantastic way to engage the minds of young people and prove that they can still do something.” KEEP MOVING FORWARD This may not have been the footballing vehicle that Mike and Ashley had envisioned for 2020, however as ever, the message is as important as the vehicle delivering it. Currently they’re operating with an entire fleet. “Engagement and activity is important,” Mike says, “To help with this we’ve been making full use of

some very talented volunteers to write for us and our platform. Allowing them to gain experience in writing for an audience as well as to discuss any topics that are on their minds.” KickOff@3 will continue to find new and interesting ways to keep their community message reaching as wide an audience as possible. This is a difficult time, but it is also a unique chance for them to open up as many new doors as possible both in UK and beyond.

“Who knows, this could be the opportunity for us to start making an international difference too,” Mike says, “Now that would be something cool to kick off.” | 55

The best shoes for Parkour A profile on Feiyue martial arts shoes

Considered to be one of the leading shoes for parkour enthusiasts, the Feiyue martial arts shoe’s history predates the current enthusiasm from the urban acrobat.

the feet of martial artists ranging from karate to wushu practitioners and even Shaolin monks. With this kind of history, it is clear as to why parkour quickly adopted this shoe.



As a brand Feiyue began in Shanghai China in the 1920s. Ten years later, Feiyue, which means “Great Leap Forward” or “Flying Forward” were producing a shoe that had gained a reputation for being flexible, comfortable and robust, perfect for athletes and martial artists.

After an afternoon of parkour, you’ll understand why appropriate footwear is important. “Appropriate” being the optimal word. Parkour, as an activity, requires a greater flexibility and grip of the shoe than is provided by many brands. It is less about the cushion of the sole and more about the flexible mobility of the foot itself and the grip. This is why those shoes associated with martial arts, especially those that utilise kicks- where the position of the foot is important, work so well.

Quickly, Feiyue shoes became a popular choice not only for martial artists but also for performing dancers and acrobats. (*Interesting fact: they were featured in the Opening Ceremony of the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing.) Holding a prominent position in Chinese sports and athletics, their shoes are regularly seen upon

56 |

Many in the parkour community were quick to adopt the highly flexible and low cost shoe. As a result, Feiyues have become adored by many

can bend, twist and crumple the sole almost into a fist. Ankle movement is completely unimpeded which is an advantage to most wanting to make use of these sort of shoes. They are also incredibly sensitive compared to the average running shoe that many traceurs use when they start. There is nothing particularly wrong with running shoes as they are designed for a lot of wear and tear and support but running shoes do lack a lot of flexibility and takes away a lot of foot sensitivity. The sensitivity that Feiyues offer makes balancing on rails and ledges much easier, allowing you to gather your balance. It also reflects how when we were young children, we spent most of our time playing with shoes off. Very importantly, this sensitivity allows for a greater precision and increases the development of micro muscle usage which is important for the landing and rolls. ardent and experienced traceurs who value the design and quality of the shoe as well as its relative affordability. When your main activity can involve leaping from one block of urban concrete to another and running up rough brick walls, shoes tend to get obliterated quickly. COMFORT Not as cushioned as your average running shoe, Feiyues are still considered quite comfortable. At first this may not seem to be the case as if you’re used to your feet being very well cushioned it will take some time for your feet to adapt and toughen up. What will immediately be apparent however is how much contact you’ll get with the whole of your shoe, making it easier to get grip and traction on your various manoeuvres.

PADDING It is true that the lack of padding/cushioning does have the added benefit of more flexibility but be warned that these shoes do little for absorbing shock. However, your parkour training should have a lot of focus on the development of technique and the distribution of heavy landing impacts. The fact that this shoe won’t help cover up any poor technique with added shock-absorption will help hammer any lessons home- probably through your leg joints.

A snug fit, they do have a wider fit and other reviews have suggested lacing them up with an “over and under” lacing tie rather than the usual criss-cross style. The canvas upper provides good breathability so you’re toes are less likely to sweat through. TOE MOVEMENT AND GRIP Without a doubt one of the most flexible shoes, this is one of Feiyues greatest strengths. Wearers | 57

STYLE While some traceurs may scoff at anyone caring about the state of their shoes, it is worth mentioning that these shoes are actually very fashionable. The minimalist style and purpose built orientation that lacks any unnecessary flare has made these very reliable run-around shoes.

High absorption shoes are really for people interested in doing “super hero landings” anyway, which if you’ve watched Deadpool 2, you know don’t work. LIGHTWEIGHT These are very light shoes designed for martial artists who would otherwise be going barefoot, (in many schools shoes are used for health, safety and hygiene). So, there is no weight really aside from the rubber sole. This is perfect for developing a nice muscular balance as well as strengthening the feet generally- however be warned, if you stub your toe on anything at all you’ll feel it. GRIP As mentioned above there is a lot of natural grip with the Feiyue sole. Not the best in the industry but very good for the price you’re paying. While like most shoes, they struggle in wet conditions, this can also be a good thing to help develop your technique. Not to say they are useless when it rains, but it’s something to consider. If you’re doing high risk jumps anyway, you shouldn’t be practising them in wet conditions. What has been said, and this goes across martial artists as well as traceurs is that the sole durability isn’t great. You will be replacing your Feiyues. With any kind of heavy training, especially cat leaps and wall runs the grip of the sole wears down quickly. The rest of the shoe is pretty sturdy, and nothing is likely to cause issues before the grip is completely destroyed. Considering the price and that you can buy several pairs of Feiyues for the same price as most other parkour shoes, this is a passable issue.

58 |

Not only the perfect training shoe that will will help you develop your technique and ability which should always be the primary focus while training. They’ll also make you look good while doing it. However, when purchasing, consider not going for the white version because they will get grubby right away. SUGGESTION Make sure you wear a decent pair of athletic socks along with your Feiyues. These shoes can be unforgiving when it comes to blisters at the start and socks will also help maintain the body of the shoe longer. Investing in a good pair of cotton socks will make sure they last longer and can also save you from unnecessary blisters that can slow down your progress. SUMMARY In the parkour world they are pretty unique and it’s difficult to find a comparable shoe that offers the same benefit/problem ratio at such an affordable price. Like any gear you should try them out cautiously at first because they are different to normal shoes and while they are popular you might find that you’re the only one wearing them in a group of traceurs. Loved by martial artists and traceurs around the world they have been put through their paces by some of the best and they are designed for this purpose, so it doesn’t take a leap of faith to put your trust into them.

A Profile on AA Sports Urban Sports Equipment Provider

AA SPORTS A&A Sports has long been associated with sports clothing, footwear, equipment and accessories across a wide range of sports. With humble beginnings on various markets across the North West of UK they built up their large portfolio of brands to support a wider range of sports including football, rugby, running, general fitness, swimming and martial arts. EXPERIENCE AA Sports have been supporting sport men and women for over twenty five years from their bricks and mortar store on the outskirts of Manchester City Centre. A reputable and knowledgeable company known for stocking some of the biggest sporting brands from across the globe and for being highly innovative in their offering. Conscious of the fine line between applicable and fashionable their stock has always provided a balance between the two at consistently affordable prices. CATERED SPORTS Official Sports stockists of leading branded

sportswear for men, women and babies AA Sports hold brands ranging from Nike, Addidas and Speedo to Under Armour, Voi Jeans and many more. They even cater for some infant sportswear for the smallest babies. SPORTSWEAR Their collection of sportwear includes a wide range of clothing and attire for men and women including the latest sportwear technology, hoodies and sweatshirts, T-shirts, vests polo shirts, shorts jackets and even stylish jeans and chinos. FOOTWEAR As science and comprehensive research have demonstrated conclusively how important correct footwear is to training and exercise, their range of sports footwear has become pretty comprehensive. Featuring a large selection of footwear inspired by sports professionals including trainers, sandals, flip flops and a range of sporting boots. Many of their brands feature the latest in podiatric technology to ensure that all important competitive edge. | 59

ACCESSORIES Really a one stop shop in the same store sports bags and gym sacks for men and women and other accessories can be found. Baseball caps, beanies, winter hats, scarves and gloves as well as essential underwear and socks for men and women can all be purchased from the store and what cannot be found can always be ordered. WHERE THEY REALLY EXCEL One of the main categories is children wear and AA Sports catalogue include everything from essential gear for all major sports as well as replica kits for those kids wanting to emulate their sporting heroes. Safety equipment, parent equipment and a selection of baby grows and clothing. Over the two and a half decades that the company has been providing gear to their customers they have learnt how to predict the upcoming trends and stock things accordingly. So, for those parents looking to purchase essential gear for their kids they’ll also find a selection of affordable school bags and school sports kits. SPORTS FOOTBALL. The beautiful game. Their football range is huge, and they stock a great range of Men’s & Kids Football Boots with boots for firm and soft ground and astro turf from Nike including Mercurial as worn by Christiano Ronaldo, Nike Hypervenom as worn by Wayne Rooney & Neymar, Nike CTR360 as worn by Iniesta and Nike trademark Tiempo range as worn by Gerrard Pique. They also have a wide range of Adidas Football Boots including the Adidas Predator & F50 Boots as worn by Golden Boot player Lionel Messi. Recently they’ve introduced the Under Armour Boots to their collection with a multitude of styles and technologies that they couldn’t pass up. Replica Men’s, Kids and Babies Football Kits from Manchester United, Manchester City & England are available at low prices so customers can support their team with pride. For aspiring Goalkeepers, they offer a wide range of Men’s & Kids Goalkeeper Gloves from Nike, Adidas & Top

60 |

Glove brand Reusch in must have Fingersave technologies for the total shot stopper. Padded goalkeeper clothing is available with multi padding on those prone impact areas to keep goalies saving all match. They have a wide range of Football Equipment and essential Accessories for goalie kit bag including shin pads, studs, whistles and the latest official footballs from leagues and competitions around the globe including the Barclays Premier League, Serie A, La Liga, World Cup & Euro Competitions. The available teamwear range has essential football kit staples for matchday with an array of football socks, shorts and team jerseys so you can go on the pitch in style. EXERCISE AND FITNESS Exercise and fitness has become a massive part of our lives and we need to keep active more regularly and that doesn’t always mean that you have to leave the house. Stocked is a wide range of exercise equipment and training aids that can be done from the home for customers to keep active without having to pay for a gym membership. To support all corners of exercise they also keep all the important range of sports injury supports to cover a wide range of body parts to get you back to training as quick as possible. For gym goers needing to look the part, men’s and women’s exercise and fitness clothing essentials are stocked. When exercising it is important to have a good pair of trainers with cushioning as this can prevent injury and help you enjoy your session without having to nurse your sore feet as well as your sore muscles afterwards. They have a great range of men’s and women’s cushioned fitness trainers with Air, Gel, Structured and other supports for the foot. RUNNING Running is one of the simplest forms of keeping fit and a good run also helps to release stress and endorphins to enhance your overall wellbeing. Whether you are aiming to look the part during race day or just look good while pacing on the road customers can find whatever they need.

A fully accessible range of running clothing to support specific technologies to help work up a sweat while keeping you feeling dry and comfortable whatever the weather.

Super League, Australian NRL and Official British & Irish Lions Balls.


For those that like to get their fitness fix Swimming in the water AA Sports can accommodate you too. If you’re looking for a low cost piece of swimwear including Aquashorts, Swim Trunks, Jammer Shorts or Ladies & Girls Swimming costumes they have it covered from top swim brand Speedo. They even have floatation aids and armbands for helping kids learn to swim!

Now this sport is not for the feint hearted. Their Rugby range is for the toughest of athletes and the game is a non-stop match of bone crunching tackles and continuous action. Carrying some of the best names in the sport with Steeden, Optimum, Kooga and Rhino Rugby on their books so you can be rest assured you are with the right team. Due to the high demands of rugby matches, injury is a frequent part of the game, so they have ensured they stock a wide range of body protection to their catalogue to cover an array of body parts including headguards for cranial protection and shoulder pads with multi padding to cover all important impact areas.


That is pretty much it all covered, by now you can see they are one of the best for new, affordable and discounted sportswear. They welcome contact and enquiries regarding their products and look forward to hearing from you and hope everyone is safe during this trying period.

They also sell forearm guards and mouthguards to protect teeth. As far as balls are concerned, they have Official Match Rugby Balls from the English | 61

A profile on Beyoung Outdoors The Art of Making a Surfboard

Established in 2009, Beyoung Outdoors is a Ningbo-based exporter specializing in water sports products, including kayaks, S U P, Surfboard, Bodyboard, Skim board and a wide variety of kayaking gear and surfing gear. An ultimate one stop buying experience for those wanting to source high value quality gear.

capable of customising different shapes, graphics and 3D modelling designs.



Their factory facility covers over ten thousand square meters and employs a full-time staff of sixty people working on different jobs. Equipped with state-of-the-art manufacturing and testing equipment and more importantly, the most experienced of staff members.

Surfboards were invented in ancient Hawaii, where they were known as papa he’e nalu in the Hawaiian language and were traditionally massive at nearly five metres in length and extremely heavy. Made from wood from local trees such as koa, they were far removed from the sleek and modern examples of surf boards that we all associate with the sport today.

This hub of activity is supported by a research and development team who consistently improve and develop their technology based on market trends. This makes Beyoung Outdoors completely

62 |

The quality control team have a reputation for being brutally thorough and careful with checking. Making sure that every item made for their customers is the best possible standard.

Manufacturing standards have increased significantly, and other design advancements have

layers of fiberglass cloth and resin. It is during this stage that the fins or boxes for removable fins are attached and the leash plug installed. Although foam boards are usually shaped by hand, the use of machines to shape them has become increasingly popular. Vacuum forming and modern sandwich construction techniques borrowed from other industries have also become common. Many surfers have switched to riding sandwichconstruction epoxy boards, especially beginner surfers who are looking for a more durable, inexpensive, entry-level board. changed the face of surfboards completely over the years. These include the addition of one or more fins (skegs) on the bottom rear of the board to improve directional stability, and numerous improvements in materials and shape. Modern surfboards are made of polyurethane or polystyrene foam covered with layers of fiberglass cloth, and polyester or epoxy resin. The result is a light and strong surfboard that is buoyant and manoeuvrable. The Polystyrene surfboard was invented by Reginald Sainsbury of Wilcove, Torpoint in the early 1960s whilst working for the Poron Insulation company who were looking to expand into the leisure industry. Since then the surfboard technology has evolved even further with the inclusion of carbon fibre and Kevlar composites, as well as experimentation in biodegradable and ecologically friendly resins made from organic sources. Every year, nearly half a million surfboards are manufactured, and they are built to last and endure. POLYURETHANE (PU) BOARDS Having become the norm, many surfboards are constructed using polyurethane foam. They are made stronger with one or more stringers going down the middle of the board. The foam is moulded into a rough shape of a surfboard which is known as a “blank� at which time it is giving to the shapers. The shapers are responsible for creating the specific shape of the board, a process that is still mostly done by hand. Finally, the board is covered in one or more

BALSA BOARDS Originating in the Hawaiians, the balsa wood’s surfboard history starts in the 1940s. Being light and strong, balsa wood was long considered a perfect material for surfboards. However, shapers could not use this fragile wood to make entire surfboards until after WWII, when fiberglass skins were invented which allowed a greater structural strength. Balsa wood boards are more buoyant and lighter than other boards and therefor easier to handle. However, these boards have some disadvantages such as they are not as sturdy as solid redwood or polyurethane boards. Due to this, balsa boards are not considered suitable to beginners as they can be damaged easily. | 63



Hollow wooden surfboards are made of wood and epoxy or oil (as a sustainable alternative to epoxy) and are a reversion to using wood after the foam became dominant in the 1950s.

The current construction methods descend from the 1930s Tom Blake paddle boarding method, which favours a central stringer with individually shaped transverse ribs covered with a skin and rails. A modern interpretation of Tom Blake’s work is the perimeter stringer method used by some manufacturers, utilizing laminated rails as stringers connected with a series of plywood ribs. This skeleton is then sheathed with 5mm-thick wood strips, creating a fast hollow board with good flex properties.

Specifically, hollow wooden surfboards have no foam in their construction. (*interesting note, boards that are made with foam and wood are commonly known as compsands or veneer boards.) Various construction methods are used to hollow the inside of the surfboard and lighten the weight of the completed board. This lightening is important, because due to the materials used a hollow wood surfboard is deceptively heavy. From 30% to 300% heavier than a standard foam and resin surfboard. Apart from beauty, the main inspiration behind a hollow wood board is that this is a more environmentally friendly method of construction (compared to epoxy and polyurethane methods) which uses fast-growing plantation wood such as paulownia, cedar, spruce, redwood, and balsa.

64 |

The parallel profile system was developed from cold moulded (double diagonal) boat building and uses at least four layers of material laminated over a male mould into a curved blank, including enough wood for rails, which are then shaped. The chambering method follows a system in which planks of paulownia wood are selected and the rocker of the board is cut into each. The planks are then chambered to reduce weight, and then bonded together to form a hollow or “chambered” blank.

COMPOSITE SANDWICH CONSTRUCTION Composite Sandwich board construction gained popularity among garage shapers and then major manufacturers during the 90s and early 00s. Entailing a hand or machine-shaping foam blank from EPS foam and then vacuum-bagging or hand-laminating a denser layer of foam, wood, or carbon onto the bottom and deck of the EPS foam core. These two layers are usually separated with lightweight fiberglass cloth or other composites cloths. This can also be accompanied with parabolic rails made of balsa or other buoyant woods, carbon, or other high-density materials. This blank construction is then laminated with epoxy resin and fiberglass or other composite cloth as any other surfboard would be, by hand or via vacuum bag.

CUSH - SKINNED SURFBOARDS A very recent modern development in surfboard technology is the creation of high performance boards wrapped in a stretchable and soft hydrostatic skin. The internal structure of these cushioned “Cush” boards is an epoxy surfboard with an EPS (extruded polystyrene) shaped foam core. The “skin” is made of a gloss coated foam and is stretched and vacuumed adhered to the entire board. The cush offers added protection for the light board as well as dampening the chatter and absorbing the impacts of various moves. Jim Richardson, a 25-year veteran shaper on the North Shore of Oahu, first pioneered this technology in the mid 1990s.

Obviously, the many different layers is why this construction method is referred to as a sandwich. It is not as heavy as it would sound with the various layers added buoyancy and it is a sturdier too. Firewire Surfboards pioneered this technology for the mass-produced surfboard market beginning in 2006. BEYOUNG OUTDOORS Surf boards are not the only product that Beyoung Outdoors manufacture and create. Using the polyurethane method. Their range also include paddle boards, skin boards, kayaks and more. Aiming to provide a one stop shop for the creation and purchase of bespoke outdoor water equipment they believe that knowing everything about your industry is the only way to provide the customer with the level of service they deserve. WEBSITE: TELEPHONE: +86 57487657242 EMAIL:

Recently a number of companies including Spacestick, Radiowake and CUSH (brand) have begun to market the advancements to the surfing community. Silencer surfboards is the current manufacturer for the various brands as of 2018. | 65


Athlete IQ, Australia The Elite Performance Platform for Elite Athletes By Donnie Rust

A global platform, Athlete IQ was founded in Adelaide, South Australia by experienced coach Alex Minicozzi to help athletes harness their potential as elite competitors and excel in their chosen sport. Alex, MD and Founder, has spent the last decade working with elite players in various roles. Having worked primarily with individuals and groups within premier tennis academies, clubs and schools in Australia as well as coaching in universities in the USA his experience in helping athletes blast through obstacles in their development is second to none. ATHLETIC INTELLIGENCE Over the course of his career, Alex has consistently witnessed the value of an intelligent and scientific approach to athletic and mental development. He is passionate about removing the obstacles and self-sabotaging behaviours many athletes possess that stop them from achieving their goals. It is this approach which he believes is the much sought of after “extra percent” that can boost athletes to their peak performance. And, crucially, help them maintain that level for longer. “Elite sport is not simply about training and competing anymore,” he explains, “It’s about creating and cultivating an environment to learn in and to expose athletes to physical and mental discomfort, so that they can become stronger. He goes on to add that limits can be manipulated through learning “Elite Behaviour and ‘Brain Endurance Training’ and that great athletes are now looking at their bodies and minds holistically. This can include monitoring what and when they eat and knowing how it affects brain function and mental wellbeing. And training in a fasted state to promote enhanced metabolic response and enable extra stress on the body.

66 |

Athlete IQ aims to work with the athlete to push pain and stress tolerance thresholds, physically and mentally. Alex says that mental toughness and mental endurance training has to combine multiple facets. Such as small changes like communication styles, what time of day training takes place and the amount of time can have huge implications on athletes level of output. They can also influence major changes to their inner game - their mind and level of resilience. The main areas of focus include strength and conditioning, sports psychology, mental strengthening, sport performance and dietetics. They facilitate programmes and advisory tailored to suit the client’s goals, conditions and details. Athlete IQ offers holistic athlete management by utilising experts in their fields as well as former professional athletes themselves. They offer a range of services for individuals and teams needing sports and performance psychology. These include mental health counselling and programmes to help further develop mental and physical strength and performance nutrition. A SCIENTIFIC APPROACH Having regularly worked with many sporting bodies and institutes, Athlete IQ knows the importance of time and efficiency and so their services are constructed with ease of accessibility in mind. Available through virtual platforms, with easy to access information and education, their client base has grown well beyond the borders of their native Australia. One of the outstanding features that is regularly mentioned in their many reviews and testimonials is that their services are not only tailored but are presented in a personable and friendly approach and highly scientific. “We optimise performance for the un-resourced athlete, or to the athlete who is constantly

travelling and competing and needs access at all hours,” Alex explains, “To do this effectively it is crucial to develop openness and honesty between the client and their coach. Our system’s effectiveness relies on that high level of trust and transparency.” THE SYSTEM According to Alex, Athlete IQ’s unique system has had proven results for athletes irrespective of their sporting disciplines. It comprises of five stages that the coach and athlete must progress through in order. Assessment: To fully understand which areas need development. Analysis and Programme Design: A fundamental analysis of the athlete’s current performance, goals, ambitions, motivations, diet, training and their mental focus. Followed by the designing of a unique and specific programme for them. Creation of an elite learning environment: We are all a product of our environment after all, so if an athlete is struggling to tap into their abilities then the location where they are trying may need to change.

Review: The results are reviewed and discussed fully, and next steps are taken. 2020 Alex outlines that this year, Athlete IQ plans to continue building on their successful launch. They have had several high-profile athletes take on their services and are planning to partner up with several sporting academies and clubs to be their first choice for athlete management.

One of the barriers we aim to knock down are the stigmas that exist for athletes wanting to invest in themselves holistically,” he says, “It is an area that is often the last to be looked at, but it is demonstratively crucial for athletes and especially the athletic elite. The biggest thing for an athlete is to learn delayed self-gratification. Athlete IQ aims to enhance, enable and educate the athlete that will help them make it and sustain it in their sport.” TELEPHONE: +61477 000 922 EMAIL: WEBSITE:

Result Analysis: Once all the data is in it is thoroughly analysed by the experts. | 67

Article on page


Bala Sport Keeping everything in sport fair

WHAT DOES FAIR TRADE IN SPORTS MEAN TO YOU? Bala Sport was founded in Glasgow in 2014 and is a social enterprise and a co-operative. It was founded by Angus Coull after a group of likeminded individuals linked to the Scottish Fair Trade Forum got together with the shared aim of providing a fairer deal for developing country sports ball workers. Angus explains that some were passionate about sports and others about Fairtrade, so it was a good fit. Angus’ own motivations began whilst producing a series of three radio programmes on the subject of Fairtrade for the BBC World Service. After seeing the difference in conditions for Fairtrade and non-Fairtrade coffee growers in Ethiopia he was convinced of the positive impact a simple ethical choice that we as consumers in the UK can make.

“We got together with a fellow Fairtrade enthusiast and Fairtrade sports ball pioneer in Brighton, Jamie Lloyd who was already importing balls from Pakistan,” Angus explains, “We partnered with him before he handed the business over to us. So, we’ve pretty much created an international sports ball brand from scratch with the unique selling point of being Fairtrade certified and allowing consumers an ethical choice in sports ball purchase.” Since 2014 they have established a strong client base in schools throughout the UK and are seeing an increase in interest from grassroots football, futsal and rugby clubs. They are the official match ball of the Scottish futsal league having worked with them to develop the specifications of balls they need and have provided the match balls for the Homeless World Cup twice. This was in fact Fairtrade history with the tournament in Glasgow | 69

in 2016 being the first major international football tournament to be played with Fairtrade balls. Further to this, their membership and community shareholders list has grown to 117 including two Scottish secondary schools. They are also proud to be expanding throughout the women’s game which doesn’t face the same commercial tie-ins as the men’s game at a higher level. A PIONEER OF CHANGE As an online retailer Bala Sports has the potential to sell all over the world. They have clients in Italy, Ireland, the Czech Republic, Croatia and Finland and schools from the very south of England to the Shetland Isles. Angus explains that they started off by making only footballs but have expanded their range to include futsal and rugby balls. In 2014, Pakistan was the only country in the world where Fairtrade Certified sports balls were made, and this was only in six factories. “We were instrumental in helping a factory in India to gain Fairtrade Certification and to become our hand-stitched rugby ball manufacturer of choice,” he says, “We have been working with the Scottish Volleyball Association to develop specifications for a range of schools volley balls, and we are currently researching and developing these along with netballs and footgolf balls.” OH, BALLS Bala Sports also make customised balls for corporate clients and clubs and have recently completed an order of specially designed balls for the Dennis Law legacy Trust and have produced customised volleyballs for schools in the Czech Republic. They’re balls can also currently be seen in the hit Netflix drama The Stranger!

70 |

HIGHLIGHTS With great pride, Angus reveals that while their product appearing on a Netflix show seen around the world is cool, it doesn’t come near to the top items on his highlight list from the last six years. These items are all to do with the community impact that Bala Sports has been able to make. Partnering with the Homeless World Cup to make Fairtrade history in 2016, which was hosted in Glasgow and was the first international football tournament to be played with Fairtrade balls. These were specially developed with input from Street Soccer Scotland and made in partnership with fellow co-operative Scotmid (food retailer). According to him this helped shine an international spotlight on their balls and was a perfect fit as that organisation is about changing the lives of those who’ve been effected by homelessness, and Bala Sport are about changing the lives of developing country workers. “We also partnered with Skyscanner to provide the balls for the 2017 Homeless World Cup in Oslo,” he says, “We now partner with a smaller tournament, the Homeless Rugby International Cup. We’ve also provided balls for the British Transplant Games in North Lanarkshire and support some grassroots sports clubs like the inclusive rugby team the Glasgow Alphas.”

DEVELOPMENT Most of the balls are hand stitched but as the big brands move with the times they must do the same so they have developed their “Elite” ball which is made using the new thermal bonding technology. And, while their ambitions extend to the very top of these sports, there are a number of hurdles in the way before their balls are seen on the big, international fields. “With our USP being our Fairtrade Certification, this has restricted our markets,” Angus explains, “In order for a ball to be used in the higher end football leagues they must carry FIFA certification. They however do not allow any other certification mark on a ball, so we would have to choose to be theirs or ours. We can’t be both.” While the footballs are made to exactly the same standards as FIFA Quality Pro, FIFA Quality and IMS (International Matchball Standard), they just can’t have the official certification. The good side of that though is that they don’t have to pay the high fees for that particular certification.

“Setting up a new sports ball brand in a market dominated by a handful of big brands is not an easy thing to do. We struggle to compete with the prices that these brands offer as we don’t enjoy the economy of scale in manufacture that they do, but we do strive to be as competitive as we can,” Angus says. Their core customer base are ethical consumers and organisations. These do not amount to a big number but they are getting the message across to a wider audience that choosing Fairtrade makes a difference to developing country workers. It is meaningful work with a big impact on people’s lives and not bad for an operation involving just two people in Glasgow. “A freelance designer designs our ball artwork,” Angus reveals, “And the factories in Pakistan and India employ hundreds of people. Even with this number we still consider ourselves a lean operation.”

ball workers. Adhering to the Fairtrade Standards means that workers enjoy better rates of pay, safe working conditions and enjoy the benefits of the Fairtrade Premium. This is a cash sum paid to workers through a Fairtrade Committee and they decide which social development projects to invest it in. These typically include the likes of free eye and diabetes tests, free school books and backpacks for workers kids and free transport to and from work for those living in rural areas. Fairtrade also has a strong focus on the empowerment of women and another benefit of the Premium is the part funding of water purification plants. These are built outside the factory gates and anyone can fill up a container of free, safe drinking water, not just workers. Currently in the UK £6m is spend on sports balls each year, sadly only a very tiny percentage of these are Fairtrade. If Bala Sport could even reach 1% of the market the impact on these workers would be huge. “We hope this year to be able to start the production of our netballs and volleyballs and to continue to support projects like Homeless Rugby,” Angus says. SPORTING SPIRIT As ever, the sporting spirit is about fair play and being the best that you can be. Angus explains that he has learnt that bettering yourself doesn’t necessarily have to involve making huge amounts of money, instead, for him it’s about personal fulfilment and making some sort of positive impact in some way. “Don’t be embarrassed about thinking big though and having big ambitions,” Angus says, “Putting other people’s wellbeing at the core of what you do is one of the best and most rewarding things. Everything in sport should be fair.” Address: Bala Sport, Office 233, The Briggait, 141 Bridgegate, Glasgow G1 5HZ


T: 0141 628 7424 or 07957 192222

As a Fairtrade organisation their goal is to continue to improve the lives of developing country sports

E: W: | 71

STRI Group Knowing the lay of the land

As the leading sports turf consultancy, STRI Group literally know the lay of the land when it comes to great sport. With incorporated offices in the United States, Australia, China, Melbourne and Qatar their specialist consultants provide high quality, bespoke and cost effective solutions for the design, construction and management of sport surfaces. As a business they have been the masterminds behind the installation of pitches for the FIFA World Cup, UEFA European Championships and the Olympic Games. And organisations like The R & A, Wimbledon Championships, Sport England and the RFU are counted on their list of clients. RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT The finest athletic feet have walked all over their product, and to make sure that this keeps happening, STRI Group is fastidious when it comes to its research and development and manages multiple research projects throughout the year. These product trials are designed to suit each individual sports surface and this sort of practise is the reason why the business has

72 |

been successfully improving the quality of sports surfaces all over the world. As a business they invest heavily and continually in the research and development to keep their reputation for cutting edge technologies alive and the people that they employ are talented, passionate and visionary, showing a relentless pursuit of improving the sporting landscape. CUSTOMER FOCUSES The go-to, first choice company for major sporting events where the quality of the playing field is everything, STRI Group’s mission has always been to deliver outstanding services and workable solutions to every client. Their improvement and solutions are rooted in the science behind their trade and their growth is facilitated through innovation and establishing new territories. Customers benefit, not only from one branch of expertise, but the gathered knowledge and know-how of multiple businesses in many different locations with dramatically different

conditions. Each running their own research and development to keep the process of innovation alive and contributing to the pool of expertise and knowledge that makes this company the powerhouse it is. WORLD CLASS SURFACES FOR WORLD CLASS ATHLETES Their crop of world-class surfaces have functionally helped athletes perform to their best and their turf has enhanced tournament and event venues around the world. Their reputation for future-proof designs that are sustainable and reliable is renowned and this is why they are the chosen group for a number of prominent projects that have their competitors feeling left on the bench. GOLF SAUDI Earlier this year, STRI Group announced that they are supporting Golf Saudi in the creation of a regional and a national strategy for the development of golf courses. The strategies are being prepared to inform golf course developers about the particulars of golf course construction in Saudi Arabia with regard to the environment, turf management, water management and materials selection. Golf Saudi unveiled its progressive environmental strategy during tournament week of the Saudi International powered by SoftBank Investment Advisers. During the first day of press conferences, Majed Al-Sorour, CEO of the Saudi Golf Federation outlined a series of initiatives the group have put in place over the last twelve months, with particular reference to its pioneering environmental initiatives. “It has been a productive twelve months, but we have only just begun,” commented Al-Sorour. “A key driver has been our environmental strategy; bringing together a consortium of industry leaders to develop a national policy that will propel Saudi Arabia to the forefront of environmental development. It is of paramount importance to our national transformation and is a top priority.” The environmental strategy to date has seen Golf Saudi align with Golf Environment Organisation (GEO) in order to develop a national program

that advises and informs on best-practice across new developments. The initiative will adopt a comprehensive approach with an overarching mission to instil a culture of environmental and ecological innovation. GEO will collaborate with STRI to help achieve sustainability goals for; low carbon, resource efficient and ecologically rich golf courses, which are supported by new knowledge and expertise that will drive delivery. The aim is to create the most robust and progressive environmental and soil science strategy in world golf. Lee Penrose, STRI Group director, said, “STRI is delighted to be selected to support Golf Saudi in the development of a sustainable strategy for golf. STRI has provided sports surface solutions and cutting edge research for over 90 years, and we are looking forward to being able to apply our extensive knowledge and expertise in Saudi Arabia to help inspire and guide golf course development.” In the same vein, a unique turf business has been created, drawing on the expertise and resource of Atlas Turf International Ltd to create a turf farm in the Kingdom that meets international sustainability standards, supplying all Golf Saudi developments and landscaping projects with necessary turf requirements, thereby minimising transportation and providing adapted grasses that require the lowest amounts of reclaimed water and other inputs, whilst delivering highest quality standards. Al-Sorour continued; “Our objective is to create an ecosystem for golf in Saudi Arabia. Ensuring that we can deal with a range of factors including tourism, job creation, sustainability and any environmental concerns. Hosting events such as the Saudi International powered by SoftBank Investment Advisers has allowed us to not only lay down initial infrastructure but to also gain more exposure around the world, so people can begin to realise that we are serious about becoming a destination for golfers.” To build on the initial progress made by Golf Saudi in its first year, a business summit is being held this week, taking place in King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC), Jeddah, Saudi Arabia from 2-4 February, 2020. The Golf Saudi Summit will welcome government ministers, senior executives | 73

along with former players to give their take on the future of the game. Attendees will have the unique opportunity to tap into Golf Saudi’s development directly, through a series of panels, discussions and networking opportunities focused on real estate, corporate, tourism and business-to-business affairs. “Our ambition is to showcase Saudi Arabia’s progress to date, ensuring golf plays a major part in delivering Vision 2030, including the positive socio-economic output of our golf investment,”

74 |

continued Al Sorour. “The summit will bring industry leaders together to debate key topics, whilst engaging with Saudi stakeholders. This will create the best platform to do business and allow us to further our objectives.”

To ensure Golf Saudi achieves its aims, the organisation has set a series of targets it would like to achieve by 2030. Set out against the designated five core pillars, some of these include: increasing golf club membership to 20,000, ensuring over one million Saudis have actively tried golf, attract at least 5,000 international golf visitors per annum, host 60,000 visitors to Saudi-based golfing events every year and oversee the construction of over twenty new golf courses.

At the heart of Golf Saudi’s strategy is innovation and best practice. This pioneering spirit is a key requisite for the country’s cutting-edge strategy and will be a statement of intent for what Golf Saudi aims to achieve with its dynamic golf development programme. T: +44 (0)1274 565131 E: | 75

76 |

Profile for TheLostExecutive

#Sportsider Magazine. May Issue.  


Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded