Nike Kicks Off Athlete-Focused Mental Health Podcast with Karl-Anthony Towns As First Guest—Talks Losing 8 Family Members During the Pandemic

Nike has long established itself as a brand that touts the power of persistence with its iconic tagline “Just Do It.” Now, in time for Mental Health Awareness Month, they’re encouraging people to just try their best.

The sportswear giant recently announced the launch of No Off-Season, a podcast that highlights candid chats with Nike athletes facilitated by Crisis Text Line mental health experts, Dr. Shairi Turner and Natalia Dayan. According to a statement, the goal is to show those facing mental health challenges that they are not alone and that there is strength in asking for help.

The first episode features an emotional conversation with NBA Center Karl-Anthony Towns, who’s previously spoken about the challenges he’s faced after losing eight family members to COVID-19 in the last two years.

Rounding out the guest list is Raven Saunders, Laurie Hernandez, Marko Cheseto, among others that share sides of their lives rarely seen by their supporters.

“Mental health is a critical part of our overall personal wellness and fitness. It is just as important as physical health to realize our full potential – in sport and in life,” said Vanessa Garcia-Brito, VP of Communications – Nike in a statement. “We know that in order for athletes to be successful it is important to cultivate a healthy mind and body for everyday life. No Off-Season provides a forum to bring more voices into the conversation around mental health and help destigmatize asking for support. No one should feel alone.”

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