September 01, 2010
Under Armour's "I will protect this house" ads have become familiar to anyone who watches football. Now, Under Armour wants women to join in on the house-protecting, and it has recruited Olympic gold-medalist skier Lindsey Vonn to lead the way.
Under Armour wants to reach female athletes, using the same style that was effective in reaching the men. Instead of showing the glory that sports can bring -- the Olympic gold medals, the championships, or the fame that follows -- UA is focusing on the work it takes to get to the top. It shows women like Vonn, Olympic track hopeful Monica Hargrove, and soccer national-team member Lauren Cheney in the hardest phases of training.
Vonn is an ideal person to star in these commercials, considering the adversity she faced when training for the 2010 Olympics. Though the darling of pre-Olympic coverage, she suffered a shin injury just weeks before the Games kicked off, and was unsure if she would even be able to compete. She went on to win gold in the women's downhill.
There is no mention of the gold in the Under Armour ad. In fact, we don't even see Vonn skiing. We see her lifting weights, standing on a balance ball, and jumping over benches. With that, Under Armour is reminding the young women it is reaching out to that to get to the top of the podium, you need to put in the work. (And you should do it wearing Under Armour clothing.)