ASICS (& Mind) #SunriseMind Project Promotes & Explores Sport’s Positive Mental Health Benefits

As the planet faces rising mental health challenges due to the Covid-19 pandemic, sportswear brand ASICS teamed up with charity Mind to launch an initiative called ‘Sunrise Mind’ which renews its commitment to sport’s transformative power to support the mind as well as the body.


Launched in January and running through 2021, the running led company’s EMEA regional division announced an umbrella initiative – spanning a marketing campaign, a research project, product innovation and a new range – to support more people around the world to experience the transformative power of sport on the mind as well as on the body.


On 12 January ASICS teamed up with a hundreds of its employees, customers and athlete endorsers – including Eilish McColgan, Noëlle Roorda and Kiryu Yoshihide – to invite people all around the world to join the brand’s mission to uplift global mental wellbeing.


Using the ‘sunrise’ as a symbol of hope, ASICS is encouraging and supporting people everywhere to start the New Year by moving (running, walking, or taking part in any sport or exercise) at sunrise to spread positivity, improve their own physical and mental health, participate in a global research study and raise awareness and funds.


For every #SunriseMind selfie shared socially on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter ASICS will donate to mental health charity Mind to fund research into mental health in sport and fund support services for people experiencing mental health problems.



The initiative is hubbed around a website at https://asics.com/geo/mk/sunrise-mind and promoted through a campaign that includes video and images and is led by a hero launch film.



Backed by a set of supporting work: including a a ‘Mind, Body & Soul’ animated origin story social spot.



To coincide, support and drive bottom line through the project, ASICS has also released a special ‘Sunrise Red Collection’ featuring key ASICS styles such as GEL-NIMBUS 23, GEL-RESOLUTION 8 and GEL-QUANTUM 360 6 in the campaign’s signature Sunrise Red colourway.



At the heart of the initiative is a new research project into the positive impact of sport on mental wellbeing using biometric EEG technology to capture the impact of sport in general and running in particular on the minds of thousands of participants around the world.


This experimental project, developed in collaboration with neuroinformatic company EMOTIV and the University of London, began with an initial feasibility and comparison study with a seven-strong mixed group of elite athlete endorsers (including British Olympic runner and European Triathlon Champion Beth Potter) and everyday athletes overseen by Dr Brendon Stubbs (an exercise and mental health researcher at King’s College, London).


This study measured brain pathways known to influence the emotional and cognitive elements of mental wellbeing (ranging from stress, relaxation, frustration, memory, decision making speed and rash decision making) and found that the emotional and cognitive uplifts were greater among the everyday athletes than among the elite ones.


“It is impossible to overstate just how significant the impact sport and exercise have on our mind. It’s absolutely vital that people regularly move their body to experience those all-important cognitive and emotional benefits for themselves,” commented Dr Stubbs. “Never has there been a more important time to become active and experience the mental health benefits sport and movement bring.”


ASICS EMEA EVP Categories Gary Raucher added: “We know COVID-19 has put even more pressure on the wellbeing of millions of people. We also know and believe that sport and movement can lift spirits and help people feel better. For us, 2021 is about unlocking the unique power of sport to uplift our minds. That starts with encouraging people everywhere to move with us at sunrise and will continue throughout the year as we demonstrate our commitments to our founding philosophy of a sound mind, sound body.”





Founded in post-war Japan back in 1949, ASICS has always believed in the positive impact of sport on the mind.


Indeed, the brand’s name itself reflects this commitment as the letters are an acronym of the Latin phrase ‘Anima Sana In Corpore Sano’ which translates as ‘Sound Mind In A Sound Body’


Founder Kihachiro Onitsuka believed that sport could bring hope and lift spirits in the war torn country and its founding philosophy of putting ‘Sound Mind, Sound Body’ has always been at the core of its business and of its marketing.









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