I am Tim Markison, CEO & a founder of Athalonz. I want to thank you for visiting our website and wanting to know more about Athalonz.
So let’s get started.
When my family and I moved to Mesa Arizona in 2010, I wanted to play in the Men’s Senior Baseball league (MSBL) again. For my birthday in 2010, my wife enrolled me in “Pro-Ball Baseball Camp” (pro-ball.com), which is run by John Rubinow, taught by major league coaches, and held at spring training facilities in the Phoenix area. This not a fantasy camp, but four full days of baseball instructions from the best coaches in the world!
On the first day of camp, it rained; which happens about ten days a year in Phoenix. So we had extra time and some of it was spent on extended introductions. (Having attended several pro-ball camps now, when the weather is nice, we speed through the introductions so we can get on the fields as fast as possible.) When it was my turn, I introduced myself as a patent attorney and quickly became known as the “idea guy” because everyone with an idea asked me about patenting it.
Later in the day, the rain had stopped but the fields were too wet for us to use them. So we used the workout room for pitching drills. I was the guinea pig for one of the drills that involved placing a rosin bag under the heel of my left foot (I am left handed) and another under the outside edge of my foot. The purpose of this drill is the feel my weight shift to the inside of my left leg, which provides a more powerful athletic base. This drill also works for hitting.
As the “idea guy”, a couple of coaches asked me about implementing the rosin bag drill into a pair shoes. I said, “I can figure that out”, did some preliminary designs, prototyping for proof of concept, and then filed a bunch of patent applications. A few weeks later, Ty Van Burkleo (major league hitting coach), Don Wakamatsu (major league bench coach and former major league manager), myself, Dr. Preston Wolin, and a few others formed what is now known as Athalonz.
Our diverse and experienced team brings different perspectives to each athletic performance challenge we tackle. We synergistically fuse athletic performance expertise with sports medicine expertise and technological expertise to create innovative products and services that safely enhance athletic performance.
More importantly, our products give us the confidence that we will always safely play our absolute best. When we know we are always going to play our best, we are more calm, more confident, and more positive about ourselves.
Ultimately, this inner peace makes playing sports more fun and increases our love of sports!
For thirty years, Ty Van Burkleo and Don Wakamatsu have worked with and studied the best athletes in the world. As such, they know what perfect execution of an athletic movement looks like.
Gary McCoy is a nationally recognized sports scientist. Gary studies athletic movements to determine how the body performs them, how the body can be conditioned to perform them better, and what limits optimal athletic performance.
Dr. Preston Wolin is a sports medicine orthopedic surgeon who thoroughly understands the effects on the body of performing athletic movements and the increased risk of injury when athletic movements are performed with less than optimal execution due to form issues and/or compensation issues.
In addition to being CEO, I am an inventor with over 225 patents and lead our research & development (R&D). In this role, I leverage the expertise of Ty, Don, Gary, and Preston to create innovative products that help the body optimally perform athletic movements.
We engage a wide range of professional, high school, college, and weekend warrior athletes to test our products to insure that they safely (i.e., reduce risk of injury) improve athletic performance. If testing results are less than excellent, we redesign, revise, and retest until they are excellent.
Our products are tools that help you play better and with reduced risk of injury. Like any tool, however, the more you know how to use it, the more you can do with it. Our products are no different: The more you know how to take advantage of them, the more they can do for you.
To help you better understand the use of our products, we have a members’ section and have created the Athalonz Academy. In the members’ section you have access to instructional videos and papers from Ty Van Burkleo, Don Wakamatsu, guest Coaches, Dr. Wolin, Gary McCoy, and other experts on nutrition, training, recovery, Llexibility, and overall conditioning.
Athalonz Academy is available to anyone who wants hands on instruction at our training facilities in Mesa Arizona. Ex-professional athletes customize a training program for you to help you reach your athletic goals and to master the use of your Athalonz Products. For more information about Athalonz Academy, please contact Jeremiah Johnston at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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R&D and Design
When I was a senior in high school in Crystal Lake IL (a suburb of Chicago) in 1979, I had no intentions of going to college. I was going to be a baseball player: a pitcher. I had a good senior season with a 0.17 ERA, which got the attention of the Chicago White Sox. I was invited to a closed tryout by the White Sox shortly after I graduated.
I did well at the tryout, but the scout I was working with told me I was much better off going to college than into the minors. I insisted that I was ready for the minors, but to no avail. Ok, so for me to continue on my path to becoming a baseball player I had to go to college. So I decided to go to college. I was extremely naïve and had no guidance when it came to baseball. Despite having partial scholarship offers from two division II colleges and one from a division I college, I elected to go to junior college, because that was what I could afford. Now that I was going to college, what to study?
I was good at math and science and was working part time as a draftsmen drawing schematics of industrial battery chargers, so I decided on electrical engineering. I started college in the fall of 1979.
My college baseball career ended before it started. I herniated three disks in my lower back a few games into my first season and partially tore my rotator cuff four games into my second season. I was done with baseball at age 19. Fortunately, I was excelling in the classroom. I was getting straight A’s; pretty good for a guy who had a 2.8 GPA in high school.
Before my sophomore year, I married my high school sweetheart; Laura. We were both 18 years old and I am proud to say we are still happily married today.
I continued my undergraduate studies at Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) and was on target to graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering (BSEE) in May 1984. On February 17, 1984 our first daughter Amy was born with a congenital heart defect that required open heart surgery. At that time, the surgery Amy needed was a new technique and the success rate (unsuccessful meant she would die) was greatly improved the older she was. So they waited until October 4, 1984 to successful perform the surgery.
From her birth until her surgery, Amy was in and out of the hospital six times; each time creating a new account with the hospital. In addition, she was on six different medications that needed to be administered day and night. This was an incredible stressful time for us, put us in enormous debt, and yet somehow I managed to graduate.
A few years after Amy’s surgery, we were sued by the hospital for unpaid balances totaling about $35,000.00. While I was an engineer and had a good job, we were far from recovered from the financial debt of Amy’s surgery and hospitalizations. In other words, we were broke and $35,000.00 might as well had been ten million dollars. I called around looking for an attorney to defend us. They all wanted a retainer of at least $5,000.00 to start. My response was always the same, “If I had that kind of money, I would just pay the bill”. I left out the expletives.
A friend suggested that I represent myself. My first response was, “I can’t do that, you have to be smart to be a lawyer”. But I had no choice. For a month, I went to University of Chicago’s law library to study. This was 1986, the internet did not exist!
At the first hearing, I was scared to death but kept it together. Looking back now with almost thirty years of legal experience, the hospital’s attorney made a big mistake: he portrayed me as a deadbeat. It was clear to the judge that I was not. I presented to the judge that I was working, how much I made, and the debt we owed. After I presented my arguments, the judge said let’s recess to his chambers.
In the judges chambers, I took one chair and the hospital's attorney took another. The judge positioned himself directly in front of me. As the judge was settling into his chair, the hospital’s attorney started berating my character again. Without looking at him, the judge held up his hand to silence the attorney and he fell silent. The judge asked me how Amy was doing, how my job was going, how my wife was doing, and asked me what I could afford. I showed him my numbers and said I could only afford about $20.00 per month. He said, “Ok, this is what we are going to do. You will pay the hospital $20.00 per month for the next three years and that will absolve all of your debt to the hospital.” As the hospital’s attorney was beginning to object, the judge interrupted saying, “Good, we are all settled.”
After that, I figured I could be an attorney. But what do you do with an engineering degree and a law degree? I had never heard of a patent. After some research, I decided to go to law school and become a patent attorney. I started law school in the fall of 1988.
My career since I started law schools has gone through many twists and turns, all leading to where I am today. So, for a kid that had no intentions of going to college after graduating from high school, I spent nine years in college (5 for my engineering degree and 4 for law school). As I like to tell friends, as a baseball player, I turned out to be a pretty good patent attorney.