Gillette launches ‘Great Start’ coaching campaign

With The London 2012 Olympic Games just months away, Gillette has launched its ‘Great Start’ campaign which aims to celebrate coaches and inspire the next generation by encouraging people to get involved in coaching. The campaign will feature brand ambassadors Sir Chris Hoy and Liam Tancock, who will highlight the integral role coaches have played in their professional careers.

The London 2012 Olympic Games is set to ignite sports participation and inspire the next generation of future Olympians, but their success depends on the support of the nation’s coaches.

Gillette ambassador Sir Chris Hoy said, “I’m delighted to be involved in a campaign that celebrates the fantastic work coaches do. I know first-hand just how inspirational a great coach can be and it’s important we support those looking to get the next generation off to a great start.”

Confirming that the UK is a nation of people willing to get ‘stuck in’, there are approximately 1.1million people involved in coaching1 with a staggering 76% of these giving up their time for free as volunteers2. It is a testament to these individuals that the economic value of sports volunteering in England alone is estimated to be just under £2 billion per year3.

As a part of the Gillette coaching campaign, the brand has compiled a report, which includes contributions from organisations including sports coach UK, the British Olympic Association (BOA), United Kingdom Athletics (UKA) as well as The Minister for Sports and The Olympics, Hugh Robertson MP, leading sports analysts and existing Gillette ambassadors, Jonny Wilkinson and Brian O’Driscoll.

Speaking about the campaign Hugh Robertson MP, Minister for Sport and The Olympics said, “I would like to thank Gillette for shining the spotlight on this area in such an important year for sport in the UK and to enthusiastically support their call for more individuals from all parts of society to get involved. Only by increasing the number and range of people involved in sport will we begin to deliver the sporting habit for life that was so much a part of our London 2012 Olympic Games Sporting Legacy”.

One of the key findings of the report is that there are two “peak entry” ages into coaching: 16-18 years old and around 30 years old4. More broadly, the report highlights the potential impact on medal performance of a country after hosting the Games. For example, Korea went from achieving 1 gold medal in the two Olympics Games prior to hosting in 1988, to 19 in 1996, two Olympic Games after hosting.

To recognise the importance of coaching for the future of sport in the UK, Gillette is partnering with sports coach UK to sponsor a significant number of coaching qualifications by awarding ‘Great Start’ grants in 2012. The grants will be available to both existing and new coaches who are starting out, with applications made via 

Gillette Brand Manager, Jared Regan, said “Gillette is associated to great starts for more than 800 million men around the world every day. Just as a great grooming regime helps men look, feel and be their best, a great coach is integral to providing a great start for an aspiring athlete. Gillette has a rich heritage in sport and we appreciate the crucial role that both amateur and professional coaches play in the success of sport in the UK across all ages. We’re absolutely delighted to be able to sponsor these grants and help encourage our Gillette ‘tracksuit Dads’ up and down the country to get involved. Through the ‘Great Start’ campaign, and The London 2012 Olympic Games, Gillette’s ambassadors are uniquely positioned to encourage people to support their own communities and give something back through coaching, and we’re delighted to have their support.”

The Gillette campaign is one of the first brand campaigns to launch in the UK as part of (parent company) P&G’s 10 year partnership with the International Olympic Committee which starts with the London 2012 Olympic Games. The Gillette UK ‘Great Start’ campaign is also a part of the wider Global campaign for the world’s leading male grooming brand which features athletes including Roger Federer of Switzerland and Tyson Gay of the United States.

As a part of the campaign, limited edition products will be available in Olympic Games themed packaging featuring a black and gold coloured handle. The products will be available in the UK to buy in retailers for a limited time only from 1st February 2012 until December 2012.