In his book Shoemaker, Joe Foster tells the powerful tale of triumph against all the odds, revealing the challenges and sacrifices that go into creating a world-beating brand; it is also the story of how a small local business can transform itself, with the right products and the right vision, into something much, much bigger. In this interview, I spoke to Joe Foster about the remarkable story of how he turned a small factory in Bolton into one of the world’s most famous sports brands, Reebok.

Thought Economics

Shaquille O’Neal (Shaq) is considered to be one of the most dominant basketball players in NBA history. At 7 ft 1 in tall and weighing 325 pounds, Shaq’s larger-than-life personality and powerful athleticism have resulted in worldwide adulation and one of the most passionate fan bases in sports and entertainment. Shaquille O’Neal’s off-court accolades rival his athletic accomplishments, having found success in entrepreneurship, acting, music, television and gaming. Currently, Shaq is an analyst on Inside The NBA. Philanthropically, Shaquille has raised millions of dollars for charity. He is a national spokesperson for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, of which his relationship dates back to his youth in New Jersey. He is also a member of the national Board of Directors for Communities in Schools. In 2019, Shaquille established The Shaquille O’Neal Foundation. In this exclusive interview, I spoke to Shaquille O’Neal (Shaq)

Thought Economics

Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill is one of the greatest British track and field athletes of all time. A specialist Heptathlete, the pinnacle of her athletic career came in 2012, when she claimed Olympic gold in London and captured the hearts of a nation in the process. Jessica won three world titles (2009, 2011, 2015) and was European champion in 2010. Displaying extraordinary resilience, Jessica won the heptathlon world title in Beijing, just fifteen months after giving birth to her son Reggie. Jessica was appointed Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in the 2017 New Year Honours for services to sport. In this exclusive interview, I spoke to Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill about what it takes to become an elite athlete, how to build your physical and mental resilience, and why she’s now on a mission to transform women’s health & fitness with her new business, Jennis.

Thought Economics

“I earn my living from coaching people how to fight….” Writes John Kavanagh in the opening of his book Win or Learn.  He continues “…it may come as a surprise, therefore, to learn that until I was in my early twenties, I was terrified of fighting. I hated arguing, shouting, violence – all forms of conflict, basically. That’s not unusual, of course, but to be honest, I was a bit of a wimp…” Employing the motto ‘win or learn’, Kavanagh has become a guru to young men and women seeking to master the arts of combat. His gyms have become a magnet for talented fighters from all over the globe who want to learn from the man who coached fighters including Conor McGregor, Makwan Amirkhani, and Gunnar Nelson. In this exclusive interview, I spoke to Coach Kavanagh to learn what it takes to win, and what we can all learn from his experiences training some of the world’s top fighters.

Thought Economics

Few individuals have had as much of an impact on modern boxing as Frank Warren. In a career spanning over 35 years, Frank has worked with some of the biggest fighters in boxing history – Hamed, Bruno, Tyson, Calzaghe, Benn, Collins, Eubank, Khan and Hatton. Warren and his son own and run Queensberry Promotions, he is also founder of the British boxing television channel BoxNation and was inducted into the international boxing hall of fame in 2008. In this exclusive interview, I spoke to Frank about his life in boxing, what it takes to be a great fighter, and how boxing can impact the community, and our lives.

Thought Economics

What My Life In Sports Has Taught Me: An exclusive guest-post for Thought Economics by: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar – The NBA’s All-Time Leading Scorer, 3x Award Winning Columnist of the Year, NY Times Best-Selling Author & Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient.

Thought Economics

In these exclusive interviews, we talk to five of the world’s most successful international footballers: Giorgio Chiellini, Louis Saha, Philip Neville, Leighton Baines and Hope Solo along with Jürgen Griesbeck (Founder, Street Football World). We discuss life as a footballer, how the game has grown to become the world’s most prominent sport, and the role it plays in society and culture. We also investigate the impact of wealth in the game and how football is changing the world through philanthropy and outreach.

Thought Economics

In this exclusive series of interviews, we speak to Javed Abidi (Chair, Disabled People’s International DPI), Sir Philip Craven MBE (President, International Paralympic Committee IPC) and Professor Hugh Herr (Head of the Biomechatronics research group at MIT Media Lab and Founder of BiOM Inc). We discuss the human rights and social injustices faced by the those living with impairments and disabilities around the world, look at issues ranging from economics and politics to culture and sport and discuss opportunities for the future and whether technology could even end disability.

Thought Economics

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