The mission of Strong Athletic is to create a space where people are proud of who they are. Our founder Nadia Kean created Strong Athletic for a very specific reason: to give athletes (both conventional and those that fall outside of the mainstream), a safe space in which they can be who they are and communicate with one another, unapologetically. Our Strong Athletic community holds each other accountable, encourages adaptation and learning, and helps us advance the human experience in sports.
Strong Athletic History
In 2014 we initially set out to build this community through our t-shirts. The meaning behind the first shirt that we created was very intentional: Strong Athletic Woman clearly printed in white ink. Read the origin story of our first shirt.
Strong Athletic prints statements on t-shirts and other apparel that are meaningful to our owners, staff and to members of our community. Designs such as “Strong Athletic Queer”, “Strong Athletic Skater,” “OUTSpoken,” and “Massive” are just a few examples of designs that we find significant and important. Community members share why they wear Strong Athletic and what it feels like to have bold words inked across their chest, sending messages to those around them to read.
In 2016 community members began requesting designs that represented identities that were different from our owner. Examples of shirts are “Strong Athletic Veteran,” “Strong Athletic Trans,” “Strong Athletic Asian,” and “Strong Athletic Social Worker.” These designs came in the form of custom orders and allowed our community to support important issues through donations. All of these shirts were (and still are) linked to a non-profit who receive a percentage of the profits.
In 2019, we created a podcast for members of the Strong Athletic Community which discusses aspects of playing sports, being on teams, coaching and being an athlete. We wanted to give athletes and coaches a resource from which they can learn more about how to coach, how to be coached, and how to better communicate. The podcast also provides stories from athletes and coaches that gives insight to other people’s experiences in sports and on teams. Through our podcast, we share information about how we can use sports to build stronger communities and work toward shared goals. Guests on the podcast also talk about different methods of coaching, learning and various factors that can impact a person’s experience on a team and in sports.
Strong Athletic Future
And currently, in 2020, we’re living in a world that is almost unrecognizable. We’re surviving in the middle of a global pandemic and participating in the active dismantling of systematic racism. We will continue to use our Strong Athletic voices to advocate for change and fight for one another. Now, more than ever, we realize the importance of community.
Thank you for joining the Strong Athletic community and movement. And remember, you do not need anyone’s permission to demonstrate your strength. You are Strong Athletic. Stay Strong!