OCTOBER 2020. 2020, a year that brought nations to a halt, societies to their needs. 2020 welcomed COVID-19, an unforeseen pandemic that struck the world in its entirety, leaving countries on lockdown, buildings empty and malls a desolate memory of gatherings past. Nothing like a movie-like narrative to make one realise, it’s not about you, it’s not about me; it’s about US.
Besides the gleamingly obvious roads that have needed to be pathed to create what is now known as the ‘new norm’ (a rather apocalyptic outcome) this is a narrative to share goodness, a sense of humility and the difference time can make in the lives of our nation.
In recent days, while waiting for instruction on new societal laws, Under Armour Elite Athlete Sibusiso Madikizela, felt that while the world was on pause there was something HE could do to make a difference in the lives of his community of Khayelitsha, Cape Town.
Armed with his superpower (running) ‘Sibs’ joined forces with Under Armour South Africa to host what was known as a Legends and Leaners Morning, hosted at the Khayelitsha running stadium, the training grounds for many in his community.
“I can’t change the world, although I’d like to. But I can make a difference where I stay. Where we’re from, there is nothing else, we run because we must, we run to survive.”
- Sibusiso Madikizela; Under Armour Elite Runner
In an ode to his community and in support of fellow runners, Sibs invited 3 of his closest friends (Xolani Ramabitle, Akhona Makila and Siphiwe Tefo) to receive full running gear top to toe as well as food parcels for their entire family, while inviting young school runners to listen and learn.
Each athlete was treated to a snack breakfast and the opportunity to hear from some of the great coaches in industry, with the opportunity to ask questions and learn more about their run form and methods that would improve chances of success.
“I always see how people struggling in sport, from our community and abroad. I thought to myself I am so lucky I’ve got great people and brands behind me; I need to do something for those athletes who have nothing.” Says Sibs.
“Where we come from, there’s nothing else to do there. I don’t know how to explain it but it’s the only thing that makes sense, that keeps me alive.” Fellow runner Siphiwe Tefu.
WHAT THE COACHES HAD TO SAY
“The relationship between a coach and a runner is such an important thing, the relationship needs to be built on trust and understanding. The athlete has to really commit to the coach, but the coach needs to fully grasp what particular aspects the individual athlete has, whether it be a strength or a weakness.
If I leave you with one thing, it’s that athletic performance over time, results from the consistent controlled application of moderate stimulus over a lengthy period of time. Make it count!”
- Armie Gruhn, Athletics Coach
“You can write a program, but the athlete must never follow the program, listen carefully, the program must follow the athlete.”
– Chris Brewer, Run Coach
About Apollo Brands
Established in 2015, Apollo Brands (Pty) Ltd is a sports and lifestyle brand distribution company with a quest to bring global leading brands to the South African consumer. Boasting strong experience in retail, product and brand, the company which is situated in Cape Town offers extensive reach into the wholesale distribution channels and a growing expanse of retail doors. Apollo Brands (Pty) Ltd acquired the distribution rights for Under Armour in January 2016.
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