Anthony Joshua is on call for Under Armour London flagship/sports academy opening
Under Armour lit up Battersea Power Station Thursday night with an added surge of celebrity power as the US sportswear giant officially opened its latest London flagship store at the Thames-side mall.
And who better to open the flagship than two-time world heavyweight boxing champion (and Londoner) Anthony Joshua? The long-time Under Armour athlete unveiled the new ‘Battersea Power Station Brand House’ by smashing his way through the mock glass storefront, much to the delight of the many fans outside the store.
But the new flagship isn’t just the usual retail hub. It also contains the UA Next Academy, an athletic programme “designed to identify, train, and develop London’s young athletes and sports leaders of tomorrow”.
UA Next is described as an ecosystem “which makes young team sports athletes better by giving them the ultimate tools to train, compete, and recover”.
While only 12 will officially become UA Next Athletes from the selection process, “many tens of thousands more will benefit from the testing and training provided at the Battersea Power Station Brand House & on-line”, said UA.
The programme is open to those between the ages of 16-20 and the successful 12 will win a year-long contract with Under Armour.
“For talented young athletes, we know that it takes a lot to cut through. That’s why we want to remove barriers and empower them by providing the ultimate ‘edge’ programme to help them achieve their goal,” said Kara Trent, Managing Director EMEA at Under Armour.
"While we are launching in London, the hope is to expand our tried and tested UA Next programme across the wider EMEA region in the years to come. Taking part in UA Next means young athletes get the opportunity to be seen, trained by expert coaches, and learn how to raise their game at every step of the process.”
The Academy includes facilities where athletes can receive advanced training, physiological assessments, and performance guidance from the Under Armour Athlete Performance Team. The space accounts for 150 sq m of the store’s total 502 sq m and includes a reception area, lockers, a running track, interactive touchscreens, and more.
Joshua added: "I am proud to help launch this Brand House with Under Armour – particularly in the city where I grew up. I think we have a duty to our community and the stars of tomorrow. I’ve experienced first-hand how invaluable it is when coming up through the ranks to have access to the right mentors, the solid equipment, smart training programmes and so on. It’s why I’m so happy to be involved with UA Next London; playing my part to get the new generation of top youth athletes to the next level.”
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