What Drives Olympians?

Michael Phelps, arguably the best Olympian of all-time broke the record for most medals ever won by an Olympian during the London 2012 Olympics. Watching the London Olympics, we see all athletes’ different rhythms and pre-race protocols, also known as routines. It’s amazing to see how sports are distinctive, yet parallel in the level of preparation. From swimmers spitting water in the pool, gymnasts grinding chalk into their palms, and table tennis players rubbing sweaty palms on the face of the table in between serves, all these routines differ but the everlasting drive is comparable. Each athlete in the London Olympics has some sort of pre-game ritual, or routine. Several are more bizarre than you think, but we don’t question its value to winning the gold.

Specifically, a variety of gymnasts have been away from home for 4+ years training for one event, one moment, and one chance. It’s up to them to tame their nerves and prove a calming presence for greatness during their shot at fame in London. It’s difficult being away from home at age 17, but their drive to win is greater than those who didn’t focus every minute of the day to train and perfect their craft.

Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte, two of the best American swimmers have very different training regimens, but they are both Olympians and both gold medalists. The value in the lesson is that there are millions of ways to succeed and not one method is proven to be the ultimate, or sole way to win. Ryan Lochte spends time surfing, skateboarding, and living his life to the fullest every day apart from training. Many analysts proclaim it irresponsible for chance of injuring himself while he calls it life. Michael Phelps on the other hand was called out by a teammate for not training “as hard” for the London Games; however, he is still a gold medalist and considered the greatest olympic athlete.

For Phelps, his ritual is no different than any other athlete: he listens to music. He typically sits in a secluded room with other swimmers and watches swimming events while donning big headphones listening to whatever music may relax him. We don’t know for sure what he listens to, but he has done the same ritual since the Sydney Games and has proven successful. Music, whatever genre, has the power to release stress, relax, and calm. On the other hand, people listen to music to get themselves pumped up for the big race or event. Needless to say, music has been proven successful for thousands of athletes because of its calming presence. It is an escape from reality for a minuscule moment of time, but what may seem like years if it was not there. Athletes continue to believe in its benefits, but also the power of a good ritual. Whether you are an athlete in handball, table tennis, badminton, gymnastics, or swimming, rituals are important to athlete’s mental success and place themselves in the mindset of a world champion. Phelps’ methods have been proven successful. With Phelps and many others, we can assume that music can be the catalyst driving factor of winning in general. If you try listening to music before a big event, game, or race, I guarantee you won’t be upset.

For more information on Michael Phelps, People Magazine ran a story  in 2008 during the Beijing Summer Olympics portraying part of Michael Phelps’ Pre-Swim Rituals.

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We do not own the photo, it was taken by Getty Images in an article with Yahoo! Sports.


The Mystery Of Names – What Is Our Purple Elephants Name?


What is the name of our Purple Elephant?

Naming things is harder than you think. Either you create nicknames from past behaviors of a person/animal or you pick a name and hope for the best. We even nicknamed my friends brother Beef because he ate steak fairly regularly, but that is the magic behind nicknames, they come from any place. Sometimes they don’t make sense, but we still love them.

For our Logo, what do you think is the real story behind our purple elephant? We know the general story of him/her, but what should his/her name be? Shortly we will be posting the full story of the purple elephant in our logo, but did he come from Africa, or has he been running throughout North America? It’s a big mystery because not too many elephants are Purple. It’s something to wonder about.

Coming soon we will be posting t-shirt designs supporting our elephant because let’s face it, it is an excellent logo for a t-shirt with a great story behind it!

Let us know – What would YOU name our purple elephant?

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Race To Mackinac

This image was taken in Timberlake Estates during their annual July 4th sailboat race.

Did you perhaps hear or even watch the beginning of the Race to Mackinac this weekend? I know I did, but many people haven’t even heard of the Race to Mackinac. It is a shame because this is one of the most prestigious amateur boat races in the World. There is no stopping, with over 300 boats participating; they endure a trek across Lake Michigan, not stopping for the night or harsh storms. It started in 1898 when the first race was held with 5 boats. The longevity of this race is truly tremendous and the public support is enormous. For 333 miles, the boats start in Chicago and head to Mackinac Island. It is the oldest freshwater race in the entire world! Imagine that, for 333 miles, captains and their crew sail Lake Michigan for typically over 24 hours, although that time mark has been broken. This race is truly magnificent itself, gone on for over a century and still is the longest freshwater race in the world.

The Life of Music Albums

In no way, shape, or form is everyone alike. What people know is that they like receiving gifts. Many of our basic principles talk about the perceived value of a CD over a pen, stress ball, coffee mug, or notepad. One great thing about CDs is that people keep them, for years. While music is a tangible product, it offers an intangible benefit to people. The perception is that a CD costs between $10-$18 to buy; therefore, by giving customers a custom CD, it shows the elevated level of care for them and they will never forget.

The longevity of CDs is incredible, similar to people holding onto vinyl records for half a decade. People keep albums of all genres including Dave Matthew, John Mayer, Led Zeppelin, Stevie Ray Vaughn, and many other artists for easily over 10 years. By giving customers a custom CD, it is almost guaranteed to be in their collection for a lifetime and your brand will continuously be in their mind. Since the average person has roughly 90 CDs in their collection, buying 6 albums per year, it is safe to say that CDs would be a great investment for customers and leads to increased brand awareness, equity, and loyalty. Music is a special gift because people remember when they got the CD, where they listened to it, and who gave it to them. Your company could be the answer.

How is music healthy?

In addition to the facts that we share on our website about the research of music’s health benefits, check out this great article for validation of the positive impacts of music!

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Not only is this a great gift for corporations to hand out, but also health associations, hospitals, spas, and therapy centers can also benefit from our music!