Any company would want to tell people about themselves and what makes them unique. These values are represented in their brand’s logo. A well-designed logo will tell the viewers about the entity they identify with. It could also use to invoke customers with certain associations to the brand itself.
Sport brands are no exception. Major companies in the industry presents their core values and/or trying to incite certain perceptions towards their products through their logo. Each element in their logos contributes to that perception in their own way, whether customers realize it or not.
Before we break down sport industry’s major brands’ logos, we need to identify basic principles of designing a logo. Those basic principles are simplicity, memorability, timelessness, versatility, and conformity. These basic principles define a good and memorable logos and can be seen incorporated into the brand logos we are about to discuss.
One of the brands with the most iconic logo is Adidas. This brand has been donning its iconic three parallel lines since the 70s, and those iconic lines have evolved over the decades. Overall, Adidas has 3 major logos, each represents specific product line.
The trefoil, one of Adidas’ earliest logos, represents original product line like casual wears and shoes. The mountain-shaped emblem, the one with three diagonal stripes, represents their performance-grade apparel for sport enthusiasts. Their third emblem, the black circle with three curvy lines, represents their more fashionable and stylish product line.
All three of Adidas’ logos share common concepts: simple, black-on-white emblem with three stripes. The stripes were originally intended to increase the durability of their products. The color scheme on their main emblem signifies boldness, elegance, and professionalism.
The overall angular shape of the trefoil and mountain emblem invoke associations with some form of “toughness”, like “durability” or “strength”. Meanwhile, the circular shape of the third emblem incites feelings of “softness”, such as “comfort”. The brand name, written using sans serif typeface, is written with lowercase first letter, emphasizing their brand makes casual and accessible apparel.
Consists of the typography of their sport brand name with a leaping feline image, the brand logo of Puma gives you a sense of activity. While the leaping puma weren’t always featured, it is the key element of their logo. The founder, Rudolf Dassler, stated that he wants his products to embody the characteristics of puma cat—strong, agile, durable, fast, and supple.
Right off the bat, we can see that vision represented in the logo. This is a direct representation of Dassler’s vision towards his brand. The leaping cat represents a puma in action; a powerful, agile, and flexible predator. It is also used to promote Puma’s vision of promoting an active lifestyle.
The typography, presented in a grotesque-style typeface, emphasized the emblem in giving a bolder and stronger presence of the logo. Meanwhile, the monochromatic color palette in the standard emblem incites elegance and minimalism, though the emblem would sometimes be presented in a bright red shade to incite one’s passion.
A subsidiary of basketball shoes and other sport apparel produced by Nike, Air Jordan was named after Michael Jordan, a retired basketball legend. The brand’s logo is dubbed “Jumpman” and features a silhouette image of Jordan jumping in Nike shoes with a basketball in one hand, about to score it.
Perhaps one of the most recognized logos in modern world, it has never change since its first appearance in 1984. It captures Jordan’s spirit and passion during one of the most iconic moments in his career. The silhouette represents the decisiveness of the game, while at the same time conveys the elegance and harmony of the jump.
The black silhouette over white background is Nike’s way to symbolize Jordan’s unshakable will to score that ball. The official logo also lacks any text whatsoever because the company want viewers to focus solely on the silhouette. They want customers to feel and embrace the same joy, passion, and excitement Michael Jordan felt in that exact moment.
Sport brands has many ways of representing their values and vision through their respective logo. Though each and every company has their own set of values, their logos represents those values. Be it promoting active lifestyle, making their customers feel like a predator in action, or imprinting the passion of a legend to its viewers, they symbolize it in their logos using various design elements.