ALINE Powers Puerto Rican National Basketball Team to the FIBA Americas Cup

JJ Barea of the Puerto Rican National Basketball Team and Minnesota Timbersolves having his ALINEment evaluated
JJ Barea of the Puerto Rican National Basketball Team and Minnesota Timbersolves having his ALINEment evaluated

Recently the Puerto Rican National Basketball team made the pilgrimage to IMG Academy in Bradenton to prepare for the FIBA Americas Cup taking place in Caracas, Venezuela through August and September.  ALINE was in the house to evaluate and assess our caribbean neighbors. The Puerto Rican team is comprised of Puerto Rican nationals, NBA, and NCAA Division 1 players that took advantage of all IMG had to offer.  One of the services the guys immediately we’re intrigued by was the ALINE Systems Functional ALINEment Assessment.  Andres Rodriguez was the first to enter the ALINEment Center inquiring about the assessment and ALINE Performance Insoles.  Once the ice was broken, the rest of the team fell in.  They could all immediately see the benefit and impact ALINE had on their lower bodies and could see how this would reflect on the court.  Enrico Encarnacion, the director of Sports Medicine for the National Team, took a special interest in the assessment.  Seeing players on a day to day basis, treating for overuse issues, and dealing with the previous injuries from years of high level competition, he was acutely aware of the beneficial impact a product such as ALINEs would have on his athletes.

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Being selected as a member the national team creates a feeling of pride, professional success and patriotism while selecting a coach from a foreign nation to manage your national team brings about a feeling of failure, question and thievery for some.  Nonetheless, its still a common occurrence.  A perfect example of this is in the world of soccer.  From 2008 to 2012 Fabio Capello, an Italian, coached the English National Soccer Team, who are widely known as the birthplace of “footy”.  More recently Jurgen Klinsmann, from the Netherlands, was hired to the helm of the US National soccer team.  The lack of success of a previous regime lends itself to heading in a new direction, with a new coach, adopting a completely new style which has proven more successful.

On July 18th, Francisco “Paco” Olmos, a Spaniard, was hired as the new coach for the Puerto Rican National Basketball team.  Amid much controversy Carlos Beltran, the President of the Basketball Federation for Puerto Rico stated, “I had to, the team needed a change”.  If you follow basketball on an international scale, you should be well aware of the success of the Spanish National Team.  They have been consistently ranked in the top 5 internationally over the past decade as well as claiming silver in the past two summer olympic games

One of the early decisions Coach Olmos made was to remove the team from the hoopla associated with the change and bring the team to IMG Academy in Bradenton, FL to train for the FIBA Americas Cup.  IMG is quickly becoming the chosen destination for the world’s elite athletics.  The “one-stop shop” of athletics, performance, and medical facilities on one campus has made IMG even more attractive than the year round perfect weather. While on campus, some of the more noteworthy athletes to cross the path of ALINE’s own, Jonna Pento, were JJ Barea (NBA – Minnesota Timberwolves/Dallas Mavericks), Carlos Arroyo (Ex-NBA – Miami Heat), and Renaldo Balkman (Ex-NBA – NYKnicks/Denver Nuggets).  The overriding trend seen throughout the entire PR Team’s evaluation were the typical signs of the stress from playing on an unnatural and unforgiving surface associated with basketball.  Collapsed arches, repetitive ankle sprains/strains and excessive pronation syndrome. ALINE to the rescue!!!  Before the team’s departure they invited Jonna into their private practice at IMG for pictures and to present him with official team apparel.

Puerto Rican National Basketball Team 2013 with ALINE's own Jonna Pento
Puerto Rican National Basketball Team 2013 with ALINE’s own Jonna Pento

A last second three point shot by Alex Galindo ricocheted out as the Boricuas claimed silver 91-89 on September 11th as Puerto Rico lost a thrilling game to Mexico in the finals of the FIBA Americas Cup.  Before the final game began both teams had already clinched spots for the 2014 FIBA World Cup. Since then all of the Puerto Rican players have dispersed to professional teams throughout the globe.

Just the other day the phone rang with a mysterious unknown number from Louisiana.  When I picked up Renaldo Balkman was on the other end.  The Dallas Mavericks had seen how productive his performance was during the America’s Cup and picked him up for a pre-season contract.  Renaldo was so impressed with his performance on top of ALINE Insoles all he wanted to know was…”Jonna, what do I have to do to get my hands on more pairs?!”

  • Written/Edited by: Jonna Pento

Cam Newton – NFA 7v7 Football National Championships: The Youth Athlete Contradiction

Cam Newton with QB Skill Challenge Champion
Cam Newton with QB Skill Challenge Champion

If you’re looking for the Gridiron/Battle in the Trenches style of football played upon the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field, you will NOT find it here my friends.  This is 7v7 football – a high speed, lightning intensity paced game where the focus falls upon the skill players.  If the vertical attack of the quarterback to his gravity-defying wide receivers virtually dicing the defense apart as a skilled butcher would take apart a side of beef sounds appealing to you, then this is your game!

On the weekend of June 21st, the Third Annual Cam Newton Skills Challenge kicked off the IMG7v7 National Championship weekend festivities, which took place at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla.  This event attracts some of the nation’s most elite high school talent reaching from Delaware, Canada, Colorado, Florida and all points between.  Teams qualified through a series of events held all across the United States. This was one of the last opportunities to watch players by the names of Quincy Wilson(48 D1 offers), Richard Yeargin(40 D1 offers), Sam Bruce(Nephew of NFL great Isaac Bruce), Bo Scarborough(RB – Alabama commit), Jeff Holland(45 D1 offers), or Kevin Toliver II(CB – LSU commit) without paying top dollar for a ticket.

As an Official Sponsor of IMG, ALINE Systems was in attendance to evaluate and analyze all of the athlete’s functional lower body alignment.  The results were, in a word, shocking.  In this context shocking has dual meaning, as you will see.

The Skills Challenge kicked off the weekend’s competition.  After a motivating speech from Cam Newton himself, the battle was underway to crown the tournament’s top Quarterback and Wide Receiver.  The ALINE Team was placed just outside the End Zone ready to Evaluate Like Champions…(insert Notre Dame Fight Song)

As the day progressed two things became blatantly apparent.  1 – These young men were amazing physical specimens and individuals. 2 – Overuse Syndrome has become an epidemic! The amount and frequency of injuries along with severe mal-alignments were, as I mentioned earlier, quite shocking.  Running the gamut from chronic lateral ankle sprain to medial tibial stress syndrome through ACL/PCL complete tears.  Even at this youthful age, Lower Back Pain was a common complaint.  Historically an issue developed late in life from the punishment placed upon the body from years of movement, now seems to have translated to the youth athletic population.  The ALINE Team was in amazement at the contradiction of elite level athletic performance and severe injury frequency and history.

On the positive side, in most all cases the youth foot is flexible.  Still malleable and not rigid from decades of punishment, we were able to place these young men on the ALINE Foot Suspension Systems and correct most of their alignment maladies.  The severe pronation and correlated genu-valgum(knock-knees) knee patterns disappeared as the ALINEment advanced.  Instant comfort was felt and healthier tracking patterns seen.  The simplistic joy seen on the faces of these pigskin warriors when the Red Line bisected their well muscled legs and ALINE under foot was a constant pleasure.  Again the ALINE Advantage was able to identify lower extremity alignment issues and aid in the prevention of further injury or deformity allowing these young athletes to perform to their utmost potential!

The event weekend concluded on Sunday with Team Tampa being crowned the NFA 7v7 National Champions for the second year in a row! It was an intra-Floridian battle with Tampa overtaking Miami’s own South Florida Express Elite, 25-24.  Cam Newton was in attendance throughout the entire event.  If his physical presence and personality didn’t alert you to his NFL pedigree, you would think he another one of the kids.  As an outsider looking in, it’s always refreshing to see an athlete of his acclaim and success able to interact with young, aspiring student-athletes.  Also, at the conclusion of the Skills Challenge, Cam was there to hand out award packages including ALINE Performance Insoles!

The facts are clear about the importance of alignment and foot care.  The human body is not made up of separate parts.  “The knee bone’s connected to the shin bone…”as the song goes.  It is this kinetic chain that must be maintained and assessed over time.  The challenge is changing the knowledge base of youth, coaches and families so they all understand that their foundation directly affects their function.  This fact alone will have positive long term effects on not only their football careers, but their quality of life beyond the Gridiron.

  •  Written/Edited by: Jonna Pento

Kenya’s Olympic 4×400 Squad and ALINE Make a “Splash” at IMG Academy

Jonna and Kenyan 4x400 TeamKenya’s Olympic 4×400 Squad and ALINE Make a “Splash” at IMG Academy

Strolling across the nation’s most prestigious athletic training facility, IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla., you are bound to see some of today’s most recognizable and exciting athletes preparing, training, and sweating through one of IMG Academy’s many renowned and grueling training programs. As upcoming professional combines and drafts; Olympic events; and other serious career endeavors grow closer, so does preparation intensity and concentration at IMG Academy. Yet, one particular group of athletes stood out and made a “splash” with their program on campus this summer.  After meeting with and fitting the visiting Kenyan National 4×400 Sprint Team with their first pair of ALINEs, brand rep Jonna Pento had only this to say about the visiting Olympians, “I am in awe.”

Initially recruited to IMG Academy by Coach Loren Seagrave, arguably one of the most decorated speed coaches on the planet, Alphas Kishoyian, Newton Rottich, Boniface Mweresa, and Vincent Koskei have been learning and training alongside some of the US’ top sprinters and trainers during their time on campus. Their burning speed on the track and incredible natural ability has attracted plenty of attention, yet the inseparable crew became known for something slightly different.  At midday, you won’t find the team sweating on the track, in the weight room, nor receiving treatment from one of the many elite sports physicians.  No, midday at IMG Academy alongside the country’s athletic elite, the Kenyan National 4×400 Sprint Team was found making a splash in one of the academy’s premier pools, simply enjoying the impressive facilities and life down at IMG Academy.

Alphas, Newton, Boniface, and Vincent, four of the fastest built humans on the planet, quickly established themselves at IMG Academy, becoming equally famous for their lighthearted, easygoing, and approachable personalities as their track talents. When Jonna Pento, ALINE Brand Manager stationed at IMG Academy, met with the team for their official ALINE fitting, he found that the Kenyans continued to prove what ALINE has found time and time again while working with elite athletes; the most proficient and successful have the greatest natural ALINEment!   Alphas, the fastest of the group, had impressive natural posture, while the largest, Newton, was plagued by collapsed arches and medial drifts.  After ALINE insoles were applied, all four teammates were measured to have near-perfect alignment. We are incredibly excited to have worked with these world class athletes and gentleman, and look forward to watching their improvement with their new ALINEment technology.

“To put it simply, that’s why we are here. We aim to level the playing field, not just for the elite but for everyone,” stated Jonna, reflecting on ALINE as a whole. “This product is being used with success by the best, and we are here to provide it for the masses. We have the technology and ability to bring nearly EVERYONE into ALINEment!” he added passionately.

The Kenyan National Team made a lasting impact on IMG Academy and the ALINE staff, and we are both looking forward to seeing the impact ALINE might have on them…whether it be through world records, or simply the 2,000,000 steps per year they will now take in perfect ALINEment.

by Greg Rothman and Kathryn McGonagle

Jamie Crane-Mauzy “JCray” Wraps Up East Coast Ski Season With Much Love For ALINE!

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JCray at Winter X! #freezeframe

It may not be the best image around, but it’s an image you need to remember. Underneath that logo’d helmet and goggles is one of the most impressive female athletes we have ever had the pleasure of meeting. Jamie Crane-Mauzy, who prefers to just be called “JCray” is an up and coming badass who is about to put her skiing talents on the map!

This shot was taken this year at the Winter X Games right after she became the first female skier to EVER double back flip in competition! Her accomplishments didn’t end there though, Jamie had a full year of competition earning silver, gold, even platinum level podiums – and it has only made her hungry for more! ALINE is lucky to be affiliated with such a motivated and talented athlete who will continue to work hard and help the progression of her sport. We have been a part of her training and a solution for her performance for a few years now and are really looking forward to watching and helping her rise to the top. Judging by her comments, we think she likes us too 🙂

JCray sent us this nice message wrapping up her east coast season, and quite simply, it made us happy, so we thought we should share it. Keep doing what you’re doing, Jamie!

My goal for this year skiing was to establish myself on the tour, land solid results, push the level of girls skiing, and continue to improve rapidly on my own ski skills. 

I think I accomplished all those goals and beyond and am so happy with the friends and community I got to become a part of!

My goal off the hill was to become someone people recognized and looked up to in the ski community.  Whether it was local PC kids coming up to me in line, or about 50 guys at a SLC party telling my they turned on girls X-Games for the first time and were stoked. It became obvious I accomplished huge first steps in making that impact I am looking to make.

I couldn’t have accomplished what I did this year without your belief in me, and product support.  I was proud to represent ALINE around the world.

Thank you so much for supplying me with product this year! Looking forward to many more adventures coming up right around the corner! THANKS AGAIN!

❤ JCray

ALINEd Athletes Earn Top Podium Spots At XGAMES BRAZIL

The XGAMES is still rolling full steam on their world tour! That gives well ALINEd athletes more opportunities to show their stuff, develop new tricks, and keep bending the laws of physics on a global stage. ALINE has managed to grab quite a few top spots over the years, but this year we have really been killin’ it. Check these results from the games that just ended a day ago – and don’t forget to take a look at the incredible history making moves by ALINEd Skateboarder, Jake Brown who CRUSHED the competition by landing the first ever Ollie720 in Big Skate Air

(Jake Brown w ALINE Co-Founder Gordon Hay)
(Jake Brown w ALINE Co-Founder Gordon Hay)

So once again, a huge congratulations to all of the competitors! This list of amazing accomplishments continues to prove that when you perform in proper ALINEment, you can achieve your competitive goals – worldwide.

BMX Park
Pat Casey – Silver
Dennis Enarson – Bronze 
Bmx Dirt
Brandon Dosch – Silver
Ryan Nyquist – Bronze
 
BMX Vert
Coco Zurita – Silver
Steve McCann – Bronze
 
BMX Big Air
Zack Warden – Gold
Morgan Wade – Bronze
 
Sk8 Big Air
Bob Burnquist – Gold
Elliot Sloan – Silver
Jake Brown – Bronze
 
Mens Sk8 Park 
Pedro Barros – Gold
Rune Giberg – Silver
Ben Hatchell – Bronze
 
Mens Sk8 Vert
Bucky Lasek – Gold
Sandro Dias – Silver
Marcelo Bastos – Bronze
 
Womans Street
Leticia Bufani – Gold
Lacey Baker – Silver
 
Mens Enduro Cross
Cody Web – Silver
David Knight – Bronze
 
Womens Enduro
Tarah Geiger – Bronze
 
Moto X Speed & Style
Mat Rebeaud – Bronze
 
Moto Step Up
Ronnie Renner – Silver
 
Moto Freestyle
Taka Higashiro – Gold
Wes Agee – Bronze

ALINE Still On Top at Tignes X-Games 2013!

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winter-x-games-tignes

Years ago, when Co-Founder and extreme sport enthusiast Gordon Hay, was designing some of the first ALINE prototypes (using scrap plastic and bar napkins) he had one goal in mind: for extreme athletes to be able to “Go hard and land soft.” Athletes want to perform better to become the best at what they do, and after years of experience and product development, we are proud to have mastered a high-tech product that so many have found essential to their training and performance. It means so much to us when we hear our professional athletes gloating about how ALINE has helped them train harder, train longer, and achieve their professional goals…but what is more rewarding than a compliment…?

…That’s easy: the hardware.

ALINE would like to congratulate all of the X Games Tignes competitors, and give a special shout to those competing in perfect ALINEment. ALINEd athletes took 5 out of 8 Gold Medals and a total of 13 out of 24 podium spots overall! See below for the full list of ALINE X Games Royalty…

Men’s Ski Superpipe:

    • Gold – Torrin Yater-Wallace (USA)
    • Silver – David Wise (USA)
    • Bronze – Kevin Rolland (FRA)

Men’s Ski Slopestyle:

    • Silver – Jossi Wells (NZL)

Men’s SNB Superpipe:

    • Gold – Louis Vito (USA)

Men’s SNB Slopestyle:

    • Gold – Sebastian Toutant (CAN)

Women’s Ski Superpipe:

    • Bronze – Maddie Bowman (USA)

Women’s Ski Slopestyle:

    • Gold – Kaya Turski (CAN)

Women’s SNB Superpipe:

    • Silver – Elena Hight (USA)
    • Bronze – Arielle Gold (USA)

Women’s SNB Slopestyle:

    • Gold – Silje Norendal (NOR)
    • Silver – Jamie Anderson (USA)
    • Bronze – Kjersti Oestgaard Buaas (NOR)

Hopefully our winter success will carry over to the Summer X Games in just a few months! If you want access to the same products as the pro’s, check out http://www.aline.com to find a dealer near you.

by  Crosby Press

In his horrific, inverted crash in the 2013 X Games Snowmobile Freestyle event, Daniel Bodin‘s most crucial piece of gear was his helmet — a visor fragment even snapped off when the track of his sled came crashing violently down on his head.

But whatever went wrong to send Bodin sprawling to the 100-foot jump’s packed-snow run-out, we’re pretty sure it wasn’t that his ankles were bugging him. And we’re pretty sure that’s due to ALINE.

A humble company that operates from an old sailing loft in Marblehead, Massachusetts, ALINE makes a custom-fitted insole that many of the world’s top athletes look to for additional support & lower-body health. It’s an unglamorous niche product whose performance benefits have drawn the likes of Tony HawkTravis Pastrana, and a ton of snow athletes at this year’s X Games — including the now-bruised Bodin.

“Alines are amazing”, crooned the Swedish sledder. “My left ankle was really messed up, and once I got a pair I can walk further without pain and I can go out to the mountain and it doesn’t hurt. I’ve been on [the insoles] for three years now.”

“The typical insole that comes inside a ski or snowboard boot is just a quarter inch of foam”, explained Derek Carroll, the brand’s president in phone call before the 2013 X Games, at which Aline is one of the few private brands welcomed into the official athlete tent.

“The foot slides around inside… and all the great technology invested in these boots is lost, because companies don’t want to invest in something the company doesn’t see.” But with the insole — the entry- level stock version of which can be had for around 80 bucks — the boot sits on proprietary ribs that run across the arch.

“The Aline lets [the foot] move, because otherwise it can’t generate power”, said Carroll. Effectively, the Aline technology positions the user’s foot operate efficiently, reducing threat of injury and fatigue.

Though it’s operated by a mere seven employees, the brand holds six foot-tech-related patents, which inform products found in Bodin’s boots, plus those of 10 Winter X Games athletes (that we know of). Those clients are medalists, by the way — Bodin, Jamie Anderson, Dave Wise, and Sammy Carlson each earned at least one gold in the past three years’ Winter X Games.

Hit Aline’s webstore to buy a stock pair of insoles, or to learn more about getting custom-fitted for a pair like the pros.

IMG Academy NFL Combine trainees use ALINE to maximize performance on the field

Eric Reid LSUIMG Academy Former LSU safety Eric Reid gets his ALINE analysis from President and Founder, Derek Carroll Posted: February 04, 2013

by: john.esfeller@imgworld.com

Competing in sports at the highest level takes its toll on the human body, especially the knees, ankles and feet. Years of hammering, pivoting, and pressure frequently result in lower body misalignment. This misalignment correlates to a significant increase in leg and lower back injuries. Enter IMG Academy performance sponsor: ALINE. ALINE’s patented insole technologies were developed over twenty years of research with the everyday athlete to the world-class athlete. While athletes of all levels may be familiar with the concept of a customized insoles or orthotics, few recognize the difference an ALINE can make.

According to President and Founder of ALINE, Derek Carroll, using a customized insole is like “putting a cast around the foot, keeping it the same. We want the foot to go backwards and regain its natural shape again. Once unlocked, the ankle, knee and the body wants to realign itself.” ALINE’s dynamic bFAST® Foot Suspension Technology™ enables athletes’ arches to reshape and align for better overall performance.

ALINE provides its expertise in lower body alignment analysis to athletes, educating them on their bio-mechanics and how to improve and increase their performance levels. Recently, Carroll and his team visited IMG Academy to work with this year’s NFL Combine Training class of more than 40 top prospects. The best power position for these athletes is found when the body is perfectly aligned. This is essential for a defensive end wanting to explode off the line, or any NFL Combine trainee trying to shave that extra half of a second off their 40-yard dash.

“ALINE believes that the foot and its proper function is critical to the performance of athletes,” said ALINE President Derek Carroll. “Athletes who come to IMG Academy test their bodies to the limits, and ALINE is there to help them perform. A misaligned lower body reduces an athlete’s control and performance, and leads to increased wear and tear on the body. We are here to try and reduce that wear and tear and enable athletes to continue improving and thriving.”

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