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Athalon Sportgear, the King of Duffels

Updated on September 19, 2011
Athalon Bandana #222 Wheeled Carry-on Duffel
Athalon Bandana #222 Wheeled Carry-on Duffel
Athalon Black #222 Wheeled Carry-on Duffel
Athalon Black #222 Wheeled Carry-on Duffel
Athalon Patchwork #222 Wheeled Carry-on Duffel
Athalon Patchwork #222 Wheeled Carry-on Duffel
Athalon Graffiti #222 Wheeled Carry-on Duffel
Athalon Graffiti #222 Wheeled Carry-on Duffel
Athalon Black #232 Wheeled 32" Duffel
Athalon Black #232 Wheeled 32" Duffel
Athalon Bandana #232 Wheeled 32" Duffel
Athalon Bandana #232 Wheeled 32" Duffel
Athalon Bandana #232-Shown detached with top portion backpack
Athalon Bandana #232-Shown detached with top portion backpack


This company was founded in 1973 in Denver, Colorado. Athalon had a very simple philosophy that works, and to their credit, they have managed to stay on course and not deviate from this mission. To this day each new product is designed and tested by Athalon employees. If the product doesn’t meet their rigorous expectations or standards it certainly won’t find its way to the end consumer. Every pocket must be perfectly proportioned for aesthetic value, comfort, and proper balance. No one in our industry can keep up with Athalon when it comes to functional pockets in all the right places. Each product has water repellent characteristics, and first and foremost must be the lightest weight in its class. As Athalon grew their business, they developed a stellar reputation for high quality, moderate pricing, and service second to none. Athalon has a client base that includes professional sport teams, specialty store retailers, and even private label products built and designed to the specifications of other suppliers.

Athalon doesn’t just make duffels; the fact is they have a diverse collection of travel bags, totes, backpacks, sport bags, golf bag covers and much more. This article focuses on duffels, because Athalon is so dominant in this category. As a specialty store retailer, the average consumer who is looking for a duffel bag, is actually every bit as educated on product knowledge as our well-trained sales associates. This customer is generally looking for a high performance product that is manufactured with durability in mind. The composition and components are carefully selected for proper durability, function and design. Each seam, handle and strap is properly reinforced to withstand the type of rigorous treatment you would expect from a heavily used performance bag. Athalon does not sit still, every season our buyers look forward to a new cutting edge design and the widest assortment of fashion colors and patterns available. Athalon works closely with the apparel industry, and consequently is ahead of the curve when it comes to new fashion colors. Don’t be surprised if you are stopped by a perfect stranger when traveling with an Athalon product, as they do attract a great deal of attention.

One of many products that Athalon pioneered is the Double Decker. No doubt, Athalon designed this product to solve the hassle of dealing with checked luggage. The airline industry has only tightened their restrictions and enforcement of carry-on regulation within the last few years. Their style #222, Double Decker has a very clever zip-off top panel with concealed backpack straps. This backpack will conveniently fit under your seat as current airline carry-on regulations demand. The bottom section has the capacity to expand a full 3” to accommodate your duty free purchases or your briefcase. This portion, with a 22” footprint, is designed to fit in the overhead bin of the airplane. Consequently, if you packed it too full to fit in the overhead bin as one piece, the problem is instantly solved by separating it into two convenient bags, a backpack and wheeled duffel. The durable polyester box weave fabric is water repellent, has ergonomic comfort grip handles and an exclusive All-Sport pocket ideal for sweaters, shoes and toiletries. Athalon has a very attractive range of colors including Black, Bandana, Graffiti, and Patchwork.

Why did I focus on duffels? When we started our business in 1978 we were accustomed to selling a great deal of footlockers. This seemed to be part of the uniform when parents sent their child off too camp or college. So what has changed, that converted the vast majority of these consumers to duffel bags? The answer is quite simple as duffels are lighter weight, easier to store and easier to maneuver than footlockers. Additionally, footlockers were far more prone to damage when mishandled by a common carrier. As it turns out the profile for duffel customers is not much different than a backpack customer. Every student wants to carry a recognizable brand that meets the expectation of their pier group. The top brands earn their status, and a brand only gets to the top of mountain when they have all the requirements that the consumer has every right to expect. Now that you understand the philosophy and rigorous standards that are paramount with Athalon Sportgear, it makes perfect sense that Athalon is indeed the King of Duffels.


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