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It’s The Simple Things That Can Distinguish An Athlete From The Crowd

Updated: Aug 22, 2023

Ellie Carpenter, Ellie Carpenter Headband, Ellie Carpenter Matildas, Ellie Carpenter Athlete Brand
Ellie Carpenter - Image via Players Voice

Think of some of the most recognisable and influential athletes in the world, most of them will have something which distinguishes them and makes them stand out from the crowd. It can be as simple as a type of hairstyle, specific clothing choice, unique style of speaking, or a bespoke goal celebration. Now with this definition, there are probably ten well-known athletes you can think of which have something that makes them unique. In this article, we look at three athletes whom each have a distinctive element which identifies them and their brand.

Mary Fowler - Image via GettyImages

Close to home, we have watched small articles of clothing help distinguish key players in the Australian Matilda's 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup team. Ellie Carpenter's athlete brand has become synonymous with her blue headband that she sports on pitch. Simple and easily recognisable, her bright blue headband has become a memorable part of her athlete brand and a great way for fans to pick her out amongst other green and gold jerseys.

Similarly, Mary Fowler's gloves have sparked world-wide attention throughout the World Cup, with many questioning what they are for? Creating an air of mystique and intrigue, Mary eventually announced the gloves hidden meaning... to help ease her nervous fidgeting while on field! Although already an international star from her on-field heroics, the intriguing look of Mary's gloves has helped her stand-out on the field, and propelled her athlete brand to new heights and opportunities.

James Harden, NBA, Houston Rockets, James Harden Beard, James Harden Athlete Brand
James Harden - Image via NBA

NBA Houston Rockets player James Harden is commonly referred to as ‘The Beard’ because of his very recognisable beard. It’s a significant part of what has made him stand out as a player and be one of the most recognisable players in the NBA, and not many people would recognise James without it. He has even said he “hadn’t seen his chin since college”! His facial hair has become a considerable part of his brand especially considering that many people who aren’t NBA fans would still recognise James before the team he plays for or his athletic achievements. Dating a Kardashian has also helped him build his popularity and attributed to his brand exposure.

Aside from that, James is also well known for his different goal celebrations, in particular, the ‘Stirring The Pot’ goal celebration which is also referred to as ‘James cooking’ and has now been copied by other athletes from different sporting codes.

Another iconic celebration and important element of his brand is the Tiger Woods fist pump. Despite other athletes having this same goal celebration, not many have become as significant to an Athlete’s brand as Tigers. The strong clutch of his hand is not a picture we need to paint given how iconic the move has become across the globe.

Tiger Woods, Tiger Woods Red Polo, Tiger Woods Fist Pump, Tiger Woods Athlete Brand
Tiger Woods - Image via GolfDigest

Along with his celebration, Tiger is well-known for sporting a classic red polo on the final day of golf tournaments. Who would have thought simply wearing a red t-shirt would become such an integral part of his recognisable brand! Tiger wears the red polo because his mother claims it is “his power colour” and has become so powerful that players are intimidated by it. In the 2006 PGA Championship final, fellow pro golfer Luke Donald debated changing his red t-shirt so as not to clash with Tiger. Luke lost the tournament to Tiger and said that if he had changed his red shirt, he would have seen this as “almost like giving in to him already on the first hole.”

These three athletes are from different sports, backgrounds and have very different audiences. Despite this, they each have created recognisable components of their Athlete brand. These examples demonstrate that building a distinguishing element of your athlete brand does not have to be overly complicated. Think about the simple aspects of your athlete brand that might be memorable to someone else! If you’re an Athlete who is serious about building their brand, contact Agency X today to talk to a brand marketing expert.

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