FINIS, a world leader in technical swimming products that maximize your swimming potential and technique, announces the sponsorship of Olympic Gold Medalist, Anthony Ervin. Ervin’s story is a remarkable one, in that his last Olympic medal came in a tie for 1st place in the 50m Freestyle at the Sydney Games in 2000 with Gary Hall, Jr. He retired from the sport of swimming just a few years later in 2003 at the age of 22. After the terrible Indian Tsunami of 2004, Ervin auctioned off his Olympic gold medal in order to raise money for the tsunami relief fund in that region. He distanced himself from competing in the years that followed, traveling the world, playing in bands in New York, and finding a deeper meaning within himself.
To the pleasant surprise of the entire swimming community, Ervin began competing again in 2011 gaining inspiration from the children he was teaching and coaching at Imagine Swimming and the Oakland Undercurrents, quickly regaining his prowess as one of the top sprinters in the world. After only a few months of training, Ervin was able to earn a spot on the 2012 London Olympic Team where he finished 5th overall in the 50m Freestyle. Now back in the water full-time with an enlightened focus, he has his sights set on this summer and beyond including Rio 2016 and what could be one of the greatest comeback stories of all time.
The “AE” we see on the pool deck now is a much different man than in 2000. His signature sleeve tattoos and unique cerebral approach towards racing and are all a testament to the wisdom he has gained along the way. FINIS President and CEO, John Mix had a few comments on the agreement: "We are thrilled to have Anthony as a representative of our brand. He is an exception talent and his selflessness really sets him apart from the crowd. The fact that he is one of the most electrifying talents and personalities in the sport of swimming is simply a bonus for us. We believe in his ability to make a difference, in and out of the pool."
Founded in 1993 in Northern California, FINIS was started by John Mix and Olympic Gold Medal Swimmer Pablo Morales. The Monofin and the Swimmer’s Snorkel were the first products they developed for the US market; afterwards, they continued to focus on creating training tools for swimmers and coaches worldwide. FINIS products are currently available in over 65 countries and are used by US and International Olympic teams, elite triathletes, and fitness swimmers.
Innovative research and design is FINIS’ highest priority. This dedication has resulted in truly unique products such as: the Swimmer’s Snorkel, which is recognized as the paramount tool to improve a swimmer’s technique, the SwiMP3 that uses bone conduction technology to play music instead of using ear buds, and the Z2 Zoomers fins, which demonstrate an intimate understanding of swimming musculature, hydrodynamics, and engineering.
With his Mom in the audience, Anthony completed his sweep of the sprint races on Mother's Day at the Charlotte Grand Prix this past weekend taking the 50, Free in 22.01 and 100 last night in 49.14. Head on over the the Gallery page for a photo update as well as the Press page to check out articles from USA Today, ESPN and beyond. Congrats Anthony! Great way to kick off the Summer season [Team AE]
The SC World Championships wrapped up yesterday in Istanbul, Turkey: Anthony is flying home with 2 Golds and 1 Bronze in the 50M Free, 4x100M Free and 4x100M Medley!
Check out some photos of the races HERE and HERE.
Anthony's photos take you behind the scenes with Team USA HERE.
Thanks so much for your support! Happy holidays to you all!
Photo credit: Clive Rose/Getty Image
Anthony took the time to answer some more of your questions! Join his Fanbridge and keep sending in questions!
1) People might consider 30+ old for competitive swimming, esp. for sprinters, how did you train (perhaps differently) to swim the 50m free faster in 2012 than you did in 2000? Is there a speed secret?
The secret is motivation. In sport, whatever your age, one must thirst for increased awareness; for only through awareness of what one's body is doing, in both strengths and weaknesses, can one find improvement. With the right coaches and environment, this freedom to find expanded awareness and the unyielding search for improvement is possible regardless of age. But I repeat, the secret is motivation.
2) What type of cross training do you do? I'm a 34 year old who just got into swimming a year ago after a long time out. I need all the help I can get!
The types of cross training I do is dependent on which phase of training I'm in. When I was completely out of shape, I did a lot of running to quickly improve my cardio. Once my cardio has a foundation, I began doing yoga and focusing on stretching so that my body would remain limber since it is now adapting to increased work loads. Once I am 'in shape', I drop running completely and strength and conditioning becomes the focus. The weight room is the core of my cross training. Olympic lifting for the most part, but also a thorough medicine ball regiment. Nick Folker at Cal is the artist behind my, and any aquatic athletes', elite level cross training.
I must stress that I couldn't handle my elite-level cross training alone. There were quite a few times I disregarded the advice of my coach and ended up temporarily injuring myself in the weight room. I just don't have the discipline to listen to my body for the long term. The competitive zeal makes me want immediate results!! xD
3) What are your goals from here on out?
To see what I can continue to learn about my body and my swimming while still relevant! Outside of that, helping to contribute to the development of the next generation of swimmers, as well other veins of professional development seems reasonable.
4) Mentoring is an integral part of helping lift up under-privileged kids. You have a lot of experience with this already, how do you plan to broaden your scope moving forward? Thanks for your work.
To broaden the scope moving forward would simply be to share what I can with more and more kids. Avenues of access are, and ever will be, important to lifting up the base. Currently, the platforms that I have used to gain access to these kids are through USA Swimming's Make-a-Splash initiative and the Boys & Girls Club of America.
5) Love you even more for loving SP's Siamese Dream. Which track is your favorite? Also, on your travels, where did you go? Have you been to South America?
'Rocket'. On my travels, I've mostly been through Western Europe, East Asia, and Australia; although recently I was able to visit Arabia. As yet I've never been to South America, though if I am granted my desires, I will be there in a few years!
6) Yo Anthony! Btw I love your name! remember me? You told me you liked my specs on twitter :-) anyways how does it feel to train with Nathan Ghar-jun Adrian? Does he look up to you and ask you for advice or is he chill about training and does things solo? What about you? Who do you look up to?
Training with Nathan is great. He is chill away from the sport, but definitely far from chill about training. He trains hard everyday, in the water and in the weight room, and is competitive all the time. Nathan definitely pushes me to be better, and his strength and resilience helps me find the mustard to give more in training when I'd otherwise want to give up. I'm not sure if Nathan looks up to me so much as he might learn from my elderly wisdom about life outside the pool, and utilize me as a training partner in the pool.
Today's the big day: the 2012 Golden Goggle awards will be taking place in NYC this evening and Anthony is nominated for the Perseverance Award!
Check out the video HERE and keep your fingers crossed for Anthony tonight at the Golden Goggles!
The World Cup has come to an end! Overall Anthony won 16 medals - 9 Gold, 5 Silver, and 2 Bronze - and broke the American Record in the 50 M Freestyle with a time of 20.85. Anthony is now back in the US, and once again wanted to express gratitude for your help throughout the whole tour: he couldn't have done it without the support of fans like you!
The European leg of the FINA/ARENA World Cup has wrapped up and the tour is headed to Asia!
In Stockholm, Anthony swam 47.50 in 100m Freestyle and followed that up with 20.99 in the 50m Freestyle, beating his lifetime best. At the Moscow World Cup meet, he won the silver medal in the 100m Freestyle with a time of 47.43, and another silver in the 50m with at 21.11.
Anthony broke the American record in the 50 SCM Freestyle this past weekend in Berlin. His winning time of 20.85 was one of 4 gold medals collected at the meet including another best time in the 100m Freestyle of 46.71.
There is one week to go in Anthony's already successful Indie Go Go campaign and all the contributions and support mean the world. Half of all contributions at this point will benefit Mamade's "Water for The Thirsty" charity, so check out the newly added tier in which Anthony will design a custom workout for a handful of lucky fans.
Anthony and Team AE thank you for the support and we're looking forward to the upcoming World Cup meets in Beijing, Tokyo and Singapore!
Anthony has been dominating in the 50m and 100m freestyle in the World Cup tour. After a great start in Dubai, where he placed second in the 100m men's free (47.04) and won gold in the 50m (21.18) event, he continued his streak in Qatar. At the Doha meet, Anthony won bronze in the 100m free at 48.81 seconds and once again placed first in the 50m free with a lifetime best of 21.02 seconds.
In addition to winning races, Anthony has also beat his goal of $10,000! To thank his wonderful fans and supporters, he has recorded a personal thank you message that can be seen HERE at his youtube page.
As another incentive to keep supporting Anthony's Indiegogo (half of the additional funds will go to charity,) 5 autographed denim jackets from American Apparel that are just like the one Anthony has been wearing on the medal stand will be available on Anthony's Indiegogo page.
Thanks for your continued support!
Anthony and Team AE
Competition is underway for the Swimming World Cup, and Anthony Ervin did Team USA proud in Dubai!
For those of you not following along on Anthony's Facebook page, at the Dubai World Cup Anthony placed 1st in the 50m Freestyle (with a lifetime best time of 21.07 in the Heats) as well as putting up another best time to place 2nd in the Finals of the 100m Freestyle (47.04).
Again, make sure to pitch in on Anthony's Indiegogo campaign to keep his World Cup tour going!