About Us

Written by Jeffrey Robertson, CEO and co-founder of Elevation Sports

Our Lacrosse Roots

In the midwest, during the late 90's and early 2000's our area was starving for any type of lacrosse. No equipment was sold at sporting goods stores, a few high schools barely recognized lacrosse as a sport, and maybe - just maybe, you might be able to see the replay of the national championship game at midnight on ESPN. Despite the overall lack of interest in lacrosse in our area, the few of us that got the chance to play were hooked and so began our journey.
 
I have always been passionate about lacrosse, but sadly Elevation was not born out of love - it was created because of an ongoing frustration while trying to find custom uniforms and lax gear for my team. Once a year I would get a catalog in the mail from Bacharach Rasin or LaxWorld and I would immediately flip to the back to see the single page spread of custom stuff they were offering to teams that season. Then began the dubious process to phone a sales rep and get a faxed quote - no pictures, no mock-ups, and the occasional physical sample if you were lucky. For years I bounced around companies trying to find someone that cared enough about team gear as I did, but the options each season were slowly dwindling in terms of finding a reliable supplier to work with. I have always joked that had just one company done things right, I probably never would have gone down this path of starting my own company.
 

Belt Buckles & Tchotchke's (CHOTCH-KEES)

My time as player & volunteer coach had sadly come to end and it was time to get a real job. Little did I know that a small company in Bloomington, IN would set me on a path to where things are now. Indiana Metal Craft was a little factory west of town that made custom belt buckles, awards, and some golf accessories featuring corporate logos. It was my first venture into branded merchandise and the promotional products industry as a whole. It was also the place where I met the other co-founder of Elevation Sports, a graphics wiz by the name of Dave Felice.
 
We worked together for years, I eventually moved on to work for the largest decorated product manufacturer in the world - Norwood (that later became Bic Graphic, that is now Koozie Group) and managed product development and strategic marketing for multiple business units. But, in the summer of 2004 I got bit by the entrepreneurial bug and it was off to the races - Could I take my love of lacrosse and my experience with branded merchandise and make something out of it?
 

Elevation Lacrosse Was Born

On July 25, 2005 the company was formed with one goal in mind: To showcase all of the great things that teams could customize and bring those bespoke options to the forefront (no more back pages of the catalog for this guy). Dave & I made our first catalog in in the fall of 2006 featuring our own private label line of uniforms and some branded options from Adidas. We had a core selection of pinnies, t-shirts, and warm-ups that teams could customize with their school logo in addition to a few lacrosse jerseys.
 
Some small business owners save their first dollar and frame it, unfortunately we never were able to do that. But, we always remember our first customer - the South Raleigh Bulldogs from North Carolina. They had an amazing color scheme like Georgetown and their uni's were our pride and joy for the first couple of years - images of those kits were in all our marketing materials.
 

The Only Constant Is Change

Elevation Lacrosse was our starting point, but slowly over time more coaches from other sports wanted gear and we thought maybe we should expand the brand. So, around 2010 we pivoted from just lacrosse to launching Elevation Sports as our flagship brand to encompass all sports uniforms, spirit-wear, online stores, and merch. From that point forward, our offering of customizable items has grown exponentially, we have added Elevation Promotional Marketing to handle more specific corporate needs, as well Elevation Workwear that focuses on branded items for industrial and service businesses.
 
Our partnerships with premium brands have continued to grow as well. We are a Nike Lacrosse & Specialty dealer, as well as full service team dealer for Under Armour. We offer custom goods and apparel from Patagonia, The North Face, Adidas, CCM, Carhartt, Stanley, YETI, Titleist, TravisMathew, Comfort Colors, Cutter & Buck, Greatness Wins, and many more. We can literally put your brand or logo on almost anything - just ask.
 

Our Mission Statement

"To Produce the highest quality decorated merchandise, at an outstanding value, delivered on-time and done right."
 
The one thing that makes our company unique is our dedication to getting teams their stuff on time. I mentioned this above, reliability is a core pillar of our success and a huge reason we started Elevation. I can't tell you how many times as a coach I went to the first game with no jerseys. Our team is emotionally invested in what we produce and we bend over backwards to make sure that teams are ready for game-day. Every company has challenges and growing pains - but if we mess up, we always make it right. That's why we have more unsolicited 5-Star reviews than our competition and a shelf full of awards to prove it.
 
You can see it in our mission statement, but quality is a key pillar of our existence. I am literally the most picky person in the world when it comes to decoration quality, placement accuracy, and durability. Since we first hung out our shingle, we have been obsessed with making apparel and gear look amazing. A lot of folks in this industry use contract decorators and outsource production - we however, embellish almost everything in our facility with the exception of custom cut & sew goods. We can screen print, sublimate, laser, embroider, and twill just about anything. It's hard to be reliable in this industry if you don't do things yourself.
 

What's Next?

The industry that we are part of is constantly changing and we consider ourselves a leader in innovation for decorators, product development, and lean efficiency standards. What used to be manual is now automated and what once was analog is now digital. Rest assured that we have done our due diligence testing hundreds of inks, threads, and application methods so that your jerseys and teamwear are battle tested and ready for competition.
 
If you are ready to start your journey with an industry leading partner, contact us today!