Nike N7 ignites a Tulalip Move Moment

Tulalip youth, energized and inspired, gather around the $10,000 check the N& fund awarded the Tulalip Boys and Girls Club.Photo/Micheal Rios
Tulalip youth, energized and inspired, gather around the $10,000 check the N& fund awarded the Tulalip Boys and Girls Club.
Photo/Micheal Rios


By Micheal Rios, Tulalip News 

During this past fall season Nike N7 ignited a series of ‘move moments’ across tribal and aboriginal communities in North America and Canada. Tulalip was among the very select few chosen to participate in the Nike N7 event. In all there were seven communities selected, three in Canada (Siksika, Six Nations of the Grand River First Nation, and the Aboriginal Friendship Center) and four in the United States (Gila River Indian Community in Arizona, Inter Tribal Sports in California, a Native Urban Center in Oklahoma, and the Tulalip Tribes).

“Tulalip was a community that we picked a few months ago. Every time we release product we like to do an event within the Native community,” Tessa Sayers, Nike N7 Product Specialist, explains. “The latest Nike N7 holiday collection product is inspired by coastal design. We worked with an artist named Peter Boome, a Salish artist, and he worked with our Nike designers to focus on a collection that was inspired by coastal design. When we were picking communities we could only pick one community in Oregon or Washington, and partly why we chose Tulalip is because you have a Nike Factory Store where we sell Nike N7 product. So I called and spoke with Tori Torrolova (Athletic Director for the Tulalip Boys and Girls Club) who said ‘Absolutely, we are game. Bring the event to us.’”

The goal of the N7 Move Moments is to inspire and enable youth to be physically active. They look a lot like mini-camps, but the Nike brand calls them ‘move moments’ because it is a moment in time they are getting the youth active and participating in a sport. This year the events were basketball themed, last year it was soccer. Bringing basketball into our community in an fun and energizing way that will inspire participants to move themselves and their generation is all part of the Nike N7 philosophy. N7 is inspired by Native American wisdom of the Seven Generations: In every deliberation we must consider the impact of our decisions on the seventh generation.


Tulalip youth mimc motions of their trainer during the warm-up session. Photo/Micheal Rios
Tulalip youth mimc motions of their trainer during the warm-up session.
Photo/Micheal Rios


Nike originally planned to have the N7 Move Moment in Tulalip at the Boys and Girls Club during the month of November, but decided to push the date back in the wake of the Marysville Pilchuck High School shooting. Pushing the date back several weeks was part of Nike N7’s plan to make the event much more impactful for the Tulalip youth.

“Everybody on the N7 staff and our media group are all Native American and this stuff we are naturally passionate about,” Sayers says. “When we heard about the unfortunate incident that happened out here it was not something we had to think about, we called Tori and arranged to come out and actually put on the event with you guys and make it a bigger thing, so we can really bring something positive and uplifting to the Tulalip community. The other six communities had their ‘move moments’ on their own, but we decided to come up and bring our own trainers and put on the event for Tulalip. It was a no brainer for N7.”

Unlike the N7 Move Moments that were held at the other six Native and aboriginal communities chosen, Tulalip was given twice as much product and equipment in order to allow up to 160 youth to participate. To further add to the significance for Tulalip the Nike N7 team personally delivered the product, spoke to our youth, and brought along a 12 person training crew to engage with our youth while participating in the activities.

Tulalip’s very own specialized N7 Move Moment, titled ‘Move Your Generation’ was held Monday, December 15, 2014 at the Tulalip Boys and Girls Club from 4:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Youth who participated in the event were provided with plenty of Nike N7 freebies upon entry. Nike N7 wrist bands, stickers, and t-shirts were among the free merchandise.

An estimated ninety 5-12 year-olds and thirty 13-18 year-olds, for a grand total of 120 Tulalip community youth, were inspired and enabled to be physically active while participating in the premium and energetic basketball experience.


Trainers, volunteers and child participants huddle up to celebrate their evening of physical activity. Photo/ Micheal Rios
Trainers, volunteers and child participants huddle up to celebrate their evening of physical activity.
Photo/ Micheal Rios


The Tulalip youth were treated to a 10 minute warm-up session by nationally certified strength and conditioning coach and trainer at Nike World Headquarters, Henry Barrera. Following the warm-up session the kids were broken up into five groups where they would alternate between 5 mini-camp stations, each one lasting 10 minutes.

The ball skills station taught basketball-specific skills, like alternating dribbles between both hands, basics of a crossover, and then a quick dribble into a crossover. The training cones station taught body control and body mechanics by having kids quickly change directions in a 5-10-5 agility drill. The mini-bands station taught stability and body control by placing a mini-band around the ankles and having participants perform a series of movements all the while stepping and stabilizing with each movement. The speed rope station taught rhythm, body control and coordination. Lastly, the agility balls station taught athletic stance and body control.

A special workshop was also added to the mix when Nike N7 decided to put on the event for Tulalip. Nike made it possible for Jillene Joseph, Executive Director of the Native Wellness Institute, to spend an hour with each age group (5-12 and 13-18). In her workshop Joseph promoted well-being through a series of activities that embrace the teachings and traditions of our Native American ancestors.

“We know your community is grieving and healing at this time therefore we wanted to bring you an uplifting, fun and energetic experience. We hope you leave here feeling invigorated, refreshed, inspired and motivated to take leadership among your community,” said Sam McCracken, GM for Nike N7, to all the Tulalip youth and community members present.

Adding to the already youth impacting event, N7 surprisingly held a check ceremony in their evening wrap up. Boys and Girls Club executive staff members Chuck Thacker and Tori Torrolova were presented with a $10,000 grant award from the N7 Fund to the Tulalip Boys and Girls Club. The money will help support the club’s athletic program says Torrolova. “Those funds I’m hoping to use to benefit our coaches, volunteers and people who constantly work with the program. Making sure kids are fed when we have home games and away games and snacks to take with us. All this money I want to concentrate on the athletic programs that we run here on a yearly basis.”

After the N7 Move Moment was over, Torrolova took a moment to reflect on the evening’s activities, “I think it turned out great and all the kids had a blast. They saw different ways of moving and using different types of equipment all the while everything was being tied to basketball. We received so much brand new basketball equipment thanks to Nike N7. Now, our staff and coaches have access to that equipment will use it for future practices and activities.”

Henry Barrera, N7 trainer, practices dribbling fundamentals with the Tulalip youth. Photo/Micheal Rios
Henry Barrera, N7 trainer, practices dribbling fundamentals with the Tulalip youth.
Photo/Micheal Rios


Micheal Rios,

Native American group asks Nike to stop selling Chief Wahoo gear


The Native group "Eradicating Offensive Native Mascotry" called on Nike to stop selling Cleveland Indians merchandise featuring the Chief Wahoo logo.
The Native group “Eradicating Offensive Native Mascotry” called on Nike to stop selling Cleveland Indians merchandise featuring the Chief Wahoo logo.

By Allan Brettman |
April 28, 2014

A Native American group on Monday called on Nike to stop producing products with that feature the Cleveland Indians’ mascot Chief Wahoo.

“We ask that Nike live up to its dedication to inclusion,” says a news release issued by the group called “Eradicating Offensive Native Mascotry.” The release says the group includes “Native parents and their allies from across the country.”

“Profiting from Native Mascotry is not being diverse; it is not being inclusive,” the news release says. “Selling items, such as a zip-up jacket, that is dually marked with “Chief Wahoo” and the Nike ‘Swoosh’ makes a powerful allied statement about Nike’s stance. It strongly suggests that Nike is excluding legitimate Native American concerns about the derogatory and offensive nature of Native stereotyping.”

The news release also notes that Nike sells branded merchandise for the Washington, D.C., football team and Florida State University, both of which use Native imagery.

The news release says the group Eradicating Offensive Native Mascotry “will be holding local protests at the Nike World Headquarters this week in Beaverton, Oregon and conducting a social media campaign to trend the #Dechief hashtag begun by Cleveland Indians fan Dennis Brown.

The release was written by Jacqueline Keeler of Portland, who recently wrote in in an article titled “My life as a Cleveland Indian: The enduring disgrace of racist sports mascots.”

Neither Nike nor the Cleveland Indians responded immediately to requests for comment Monday morning.

Keeler said in a follow-up email Monday morning that the organization has more than 600 members in a Facebook group. She said the group also has received support from the National Congress of American Indians and from Asian American allies at 18 Million Rising and Hyphen Magazine.

— Allan Brettman

Nike’s New Seattle Seahawks Uniforms Inspired by Native Totem Poles

Source: Indian Country Today Media Network

This article was originally published on 4/5/2012

Nike made “new” uniforms for all 32 football teams in the NFL.  In reality, they simply made technological advancements to material of the uniforms themselves, making them sleeker, tighter, and more strategically padded. As Mark Parker, CEO of Nike, told the USA Today, the jerseys are up to thirty percent lighter, they’re made with a four-way stretch that gives players a more contoured fit with less material for tacklers to grab, and there’s built-in padding in certain parts of the uniforms. “It’s extra layers where you need it and none where you don’t,” he told the USA Today. As for the actual look of the uniforms, most of the 32 teams in the leagues saw no discernible change in their logos, colors and designs…save for the Seattle Seahawks. USA Today reports that the Portland, Oregon-based Nike drew on design features from the team and company’s home in the Pacific Northwest, and were inspired by the rich Native history of the region. Specifically, Nike drew on the designs taken from totem poles, making the bird on the helmet come to a significant point on the back.  Instead of the Seahawks taking an Indian name and image for their mascot and logo, they’re simply allowing themselves to be inspired by the history and heritage of Native peoples of their region. See for yourself below, and let us know what you think:

The Seahawks helmet was redesigned in 2012 themed off of a seahawk bird taken from Native American cutlure
The Seahawks helmet was redesigned in 2012 themed off of a seahawk bird taken from Native American culture

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NBA Star Kevin Durant and Nike Team Up to Support Heritage Month

Source: Indian Country Today Media Network

Oklahoma City Thunder’s Kevin Durant is taking ankle support to a whole new level.

The NBA forward has teamed up for a third time with Nike’s N7 Fund to create the bold N7 KD VI signature shoe. Durant is expected to debut the shoe, which was inspired from Native American symbols, on Wednesday during the Thunder’s home game against the Dallas Mavericks.

“Playing in Oklahoma City has connected me to the mission of Nike N7 and the meaningful impact that it has with Native Americans here and across North America,” Durant said in a Nike press release earlier this year. “I believe in the power of sport to change lives, and I support helping youth in Native American communities experience the positive benefits of being physically active.”

The unveiling comes at the beginning of November, the month designated as Native American Heritage Month. And to celebrate Native American heritage, Nike’s N7 Fund is bringing together 100 youth from local tribal communities in Oklahoma City for an afternoon basketball skills clinic on Thursday, November 7th.

The bright colors used on the KD VI have significant meaning in Native culture. Turquoise is a color symbolic of friendship, and the red accents on the shoe is one of one of four colors—yellow, red, black and white—featured on the traditional Native America medicine wheel, representing movement and the four directions.

RELATED Kevin Durant Teams Up With N7 on native-Print Nike Zoom KDV Shoes

The KD VI also features the repeating pattern of arrows that first launched on the Pendleton Woolen Mills Nike N7 blanket last month. The arrow print symbolizes energy and forward motion and has reflective built in for a surprise effect when worn in the elements.

Nike’s N7 mission is to inspire and enable two million Native American and aboriginal youth in North American to participate in physical activities. Nike’s N7 collection launched in 2009 and since then, more than $2 million has been raised for Native American and aboriginal youth sport programs.