At Russell Athletic, one of our favorite sports rituals is the post-game handshake. More than any other tradition, the post-game handshake represents what sportsmanship is all about.
If you won the game, the post-game handshake shows respect for your opponent as a person and a competitor. If you lost, the postgame shows both character and dignity. It gives you a chance to congratulate your opponent on a game well played and fairly won. It also lets you look him in the eye and let him see that while you may have lost this game, that winning spirit still burns inside. And to us that’s what sports and sportsmanship is all about.
With all due respect to the great Vince Lombardi, at Russell Athletic we don’t believe winning is “everything.” Don’t get us wrong.; we’re not advocating 13th place ribbons and trophies for just showing up. Far from it. We believe the competition of sports, the drive to win, builds character. And to us, building character — being a better person, a better athlete, a better teammate — that’s “everything.”
Of course, this idea that sports helps build character isn’t something we dreamed up at Russell Athletic. This idea has been central to the very concept of sports itself. That’s why it’s called “sportsmanship.” It’s a term that embodies both a gentlemen-like sense of respect your opponent, as well as the determination and never-say-die attitude of a true competitor.
At Russell Athletic we like to think that we are weaving that same sense of sportsmanship into every item of sports clothing we make from team uniforms to mens athletic wear. Each piece is designed with a respect for athletes, and a commitment to bring them the highest quality sportswear available. Because we believe sports don’t just bring out the best in people, they bring out the best in companies, too.