How Do You Hydrate? The Best Water Bottles for Back to School

klean kanteen hydrate
Photo via Klean Kanteen.

Staying hydrated is always important, especially for long days spent at school and extracurricular activities. This fall, we recommend reusable water bottles; they are not only sustainable, but are also unique and offer a touch of individuality. Water bottle brands have taken their designs to the next level and offer a wide selection of sizes, colours, and functions. Below we are sharing key features of some of Sporting Life’s top hydration brands. Take a look at more of the diverse styles that Sporting Life has to offer, and choose the right water bottle for you. How will you hydrate for back to school?

Camelbak may be known for their hands-free systems, however they also offer a variety of easy-drinking bottles that make hydration a breeze. This brand is especially useful when shopping for a younger child- designs are clean, simple, & functional and come in an array of kids sizes & patterns. Camelbak offers insulated and non-insulated options, making this brand suitable for any age group.

S’well bottles are quickly gaining popularity in the world of hydration. This trendy bottle is not only beautiful, but it is designed to keep your drinks cold for 24 hours and hot for 12 hours. With a sleek design and two sizes available- 17oz and 25oz- S’well bottles will fit in almost any purse or backpack. With so many finishes, patterns and colours to choose from, S’well allows you to express your personality while getting your 8-glasses-a-day.

Klean Kanteen is a high-quality and durable hydration brand. The best thing about this brand is the variety of sizes and functions that they have to offer. For kids, there are small sized bottles and sippy caps to prevent spills; for long, active days, a 40oz bottle may be the right fit; and for the over-caffeinated university student, Klean Kanteen offers an insulated cup with a café cap. Klean Kanteen bottles come in every colour of the rainbow and- as seen in the image above- are easily clipped onto a backpack. Perfect for the active student!

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Sporting Life Announced as Alberta Alpine’s Official Retailer Through 2020

Alberta Alpine HorizontalSee original article here.

(Canmore, AB) – Alberta Alpine is pleased to introduce Sporting Life as our newest sponsor and supporter of alpine ski racing development in our province. For the past 35 years, Sporting Life is a place where customers in Ontario could find the best quality, brand name fashion and sports equipment that supports the active and energetic lifestyle. Sporting Life is now opening its first out-of-Ontario store this upcoming October 2016 at Southcentre Mall in Calgary, as a first step in its Western expansion plans.

As Alberta Alpine’s “Official Retailer”, Sporting Life’s initial sponsorship is for 5 years through the 2019-2020 season and focuses on providing access, service and support for all levels of ski racers and their families.

Alberta Alpine President Nigel Loring sees the new relationship as a “natural fit”, going onto explain: “Our members represent a large and active segment of the outdoor sport enthusiast market with a broad and impactful presence across Alberta and beyond. Sporting Life’s commitment to providing the highest quality of products and service will provide positive and lasting value for all members and the community.”

John Roe, Sporting Life’s Director of Marketing & Advertising noted: “Ski racing has been a pillar to our business since our inception. For 36 years we have provided funding, services and a support network via our staff and their unique service ability, travelling around the globe, all year round working with athletes at the National Level and supporting the kids at the entry level. Our services are current, our team’s talents are learned from the best, and most of all, we take care and pride to help athletes be the best they can be. Our new service center will have the second of only 2 base grinding machines in the country, The Wintersteiger NC – if you want fast, this thing will get you there.”

“We look forward for you to see what we have built. We would consider our new 43,000 square foot home to be your home for all things sport/outerwear/athletic wear and fashion.”

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Brand Spotlight: tentree

Photo via tentree.
Photo via tentree.

The concept is simple: buy one item and ten trees are planted. That’s the innovative driving force behind tentree.

Since appearing on Dragon’s Den in 2012, this Canadian-born brand has already grown a significant fan base. With over 9 million trees planted to date, tentree is dedicated to an admirable goal. They strive to inspire consumers to take part in the preservation of the environment while adding stylish pieces of clothing to their closets.

The collection consists of a variety of apparel and accessories, with each item featuring a “treecode.” This code is used to register the product online after purchase. Customers are then able to see exactly where in the world their trees will be planted and how their purchase will benefit the local community.

tentree’s commitment to our planet is based on three pillars: stewardship, transparency, and community. tentree works tirelessly to be both socially and environmentally responsible. The company prides itself on being open and transparent about company practices, and intends for consumers to be informed about the purchases they make. Finally, tentree aims to inspire our generation to adopt an environmentally and socially conscious lifestyle.
Photo via tentree.
tentree is partnered with various not for profit organizations around the world, including Canadian Wildlife Federation, WeForest, American Forests, Eden Reforestation and Trees for the Future. By joining forces with these organizations, tentree guarantees that their reforestation efforts have the most effective outcome possible. In planting trees, your purchase not only helps to revitalize soil and provide a substantial oxygen supply to the surrounding environments, but additionally creates employment and necessary resources for local residents. In fact, the company often plants more than ten local “pioneer” species per purchase in order to guarantee that ten trees SURVIVE.

Click here for more information on tentree and their relentless commitment to saving our planet.


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5 Pants Every Guy Needs for Fall

Denim 1

We have officially entered “late August”, and the weather confirms that fall is fast approaching. It’s finally possible to wear pants without succumbing to the heat! Here at Sporting Life, we are so excited for what this season has to offer in terms of menswear. Fall 2016 is bringing plenty of fun colours and patterns, but it also comes with some solid styles in neutral shades.

Pants can easily be overlooked when building a seasonal wardrobe. Why spend money on new jeans when there are so many fun shirts and shoes out there? While it may be more interesting to shop for statement pieces, it is important to make sure that you’ve invested in the foundation of your outfit. Joggers are incredibly easy yet stylish, and a pair of crisp, dark jeans can take you from casual Friday to dinner & drinks without any effort at all.

These five styles are all that any guy needs to master autumn fashion: joggers, dark denim, chinos, sweatpants, and twill pants. This simple collection of bottoms is particularly useful for guys headed off to university (psst- have you seen our university packing list?). A few versatile pairs of pants will complete your fall wardrobe without sacrificing valuable closet space. Now is the time to dive head first into the season and embrace back to school fashion.

What will you wear on your first day back?

Zanerobe Pants


Levi's Pants


Volcom Pants


Nike Pants


Ben Sherman Pants

Ben Sherman


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University Packing List

University Packing List

Moving away for school is an exciting experience- so much independence! While the decision to head off to school may be a no-brainer, coming up with a university packing list can be daunting. What will you actually wear? What are the necessities for a functional closet? Putting aside the obvious (laptop, toothbrush, underwear, socks…) these are a few things that will make your life easier while off at school. You’ll be ready for early classes, late-night study sessions, and everything in between.

Be sure to download our full university checklist, and keep reading for our top 5 necessities that will get you through the year in style!

Shower Flip-Flops
Sharing a shower with strangers is one of the downsides of going away to school. Whether you need an easy pair to wear to and from the bathroom or you’d rather keep your feet off the floor during your shower, a pair of flip-flops is always a good idea.

A Warm Winter Jacket
Unless you’re off to UCLA (take us with you!) you will probably need some sort of winter jacket, or at least a vest for layering. Especially for those staying in Canada, a quality down coat is a must for those seemingly endless 8am walks to class. Canada Goose is the perfect option for those frigid winter mornings, and can be a fun way to add a pop of colour to dreary winter days.

Transitional Clothes
We don’t mean summer to fall; we’re talking bed to class! Getting dressed up for school gets old FAST, so it’s nice to have clothes that keep you comfy and cozy in your Monday morning lecture without sacrificing style. Joggers and fashion sweats are perfect for that “I woke up like this” look; be sure to finish it off with a trendy hoodie and a toque (to hide the bedhead, of course).

A Versatile Duffel Bag
Aside from your school bag, it’s useful to have a larger duffel in your rotation. Whether you’re tossing your sneakers in to head to the gym or packing up for Thanksgiving weekend at home, a sturdy duffel will always come in handy.

Personal Touches
No matter what you bring with you to school, make sure it reflects your personality! This is your chance to start fresh and introduce yourself to a whole new batch of people. Be yourself, dress the part, and let the good times begin!

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Best Backpacks for Back to School

Best Backpacks Fjallraven Header Image
Photo via Fjallraven.

The first day of school is almost here, and you’ve probably started making a checklist of things you need for this upcoming year. What’s the number one item on any back to school shopping list? A backpack!

Backpacks are one of the best school supplies to invest in, but picking the right bag can the hardest part of back to school shopping. This is something that you wear every single day; your bag has to be durable, functional and fashionable all at the same time. Whether you’re headed to elementary, high school, university, or off on a new September adventure, your backpack will be there with you every step of the way!

Our buyers have rounded up the best backpacks from this season’s selection at Sporting Life. These styles are sure to hold everything you need to get through the day, and also turn heads with their unique looks.

What do you look for in the perfect backpack?

Best Backpacks TNF

Borealis Backpack

Best Backpacks Burton 1

Day Hiker Pro 28L Backpack

Best Backpacks Herschel 1

Trail Barlow Backpack

Best Backpacks Burton 2

Denim Tinder Backpack

Best Backpacks Herschel 2

Aspect Herschel Pop Quiz Backpack

Best Backpacks Herschel 3

Little America Backpack

Best Backpacks Fjallraven

Kanken Backpack

Best Backpacks Link to Site



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OOTD: Boots & Hearts Music Festival

Boots & Hearts

Shirt / Pants / Sandals / Backpack / Sunglasses / Hat

Plaid Shirt / Denim Shirt / Shorts / Boots / Water Bottle / Hat

Calling all country music fans…Boots & Hearts is this weekend! For those heading to Oro-Medonte tomorrow for the annual country music festival, it’s time to grab your plaid and get ready for the best weekend of the summer. It’s going to be sunny, hot and all kinds of fun. We’ve got some last minute outfit inspiration if you’re still hunting for the perfect OOTW (outfits of the weekend), as well as some basic tips to keep in mind if this is your first festival.

Have you been to Boots & Hearts before? Let us know if you have any need-to-know tips for summer festivals.

Stay hydrated. Between all-day sun and drinks, it’s important to keep the H20 flowing. S’well bottles keep water cold for 24 hours…sounds like the perfect festival buddy!

Layers. Hot days and cool nights…what else do you expect in Canada? A denim shirt is the perfect on-and-off piece to layer over your tank top.

Pack smart. Keep all of the above in a backpack or cross-body bag. It’s handsfree and keeps the essentials close by. Don’t forget your sunscreen, blanket and sunglasses!

Protect your feet. Not only will the well-trampled ground get dusty or muddy, it’ll put a damper on your fun to step on something sharp! It also doesn’t hurt to keep your tent clean (ish).

Dress the part. Get in that country spirit in fun plaid, denim, cowboy hats and boots. Embrace your inner Nashville star!

Stay safe and have a blast! Shop some more of our country-chic picks below.



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Barbour Summer Styles

Barbour Sealand Stripe Tote LBA0250NY11 Navy Stripe Ecru Barbour Sealand Striped Wrap LSC0121BL11 Blue Marigold Stripe
Beach Bag / Scarf – Left / Scarf – Right. Image via Barbour.

As European fashion continues to create a stronger presence in North America, British brands are appearing more frequently in Canadian closets. The brand that is proving itself as a leader in the charge overseas is Barbour, who for over 120 years has been a symbol of countrywear and class.

Barbour is typically known for their waxed jackets, and understandably so. These pieces are wardrobe staples worth the high pricepoint; they will hang in your closet in excellent shape for years. Barbour jackets were made for the temperamental climate in England, and this translates well to the ups and downs of summer weather in Canada. Canadians can see a number of seasons all within one day; cool mornings, hot and humid days, and mild, rainy nights. Particularly for those heading to cottage country, it’s a good idea to be prepared for whatever Mother Nature decides to throw your way. Along with an array of jackets in varied weights, Barbour offers a summer lifestyle collection that allows layering to suit any temperature.

The real hero in this summer’s Barbour lineup is the Quilted Waistcoat/Zip-In Liner (for both men and women). This vest comes in quilted and fleece styles and is a true layering piece. It provides some added warmth on its own for cooler summer nights, and can also be paired with heavier outerwear as we head into transitional months. This vest is the perfect addition to a rain jacket for summer storms, or as a light insulator for late night campfires and early morning dog walks. Photos don’t do this piece justice; we suggest trying one on and feeling the perfect fit for yourself.

Barbour casualwear is also very strong this summer. For men we are looking at button down shirts in beautiful, classic patterns and comfortable sweaters perfect for throwing on over a t-shirt. The women’s line is nautical and made for the beach: Graphic teesbutton-detailed shorts and stripes galore make for the ideal cottage wardrobe!

Barbour’s summer collection really is perfect for living the sporting life. The functional apparel offered by Barbour allows customers to get out of the house and comfortably enjoy the Canadian outdoors, all while looking classically fashionable in timeless pieces. Between the countrywear style of Barbour and the authentic motorcycle roots of Barbour International, summer essentials can be found to suit any lifestyle. Shop our favourite summer styles from Barbour below!

Shop Men’s Barbour

Shop Women’s Barbour

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6 Must-Have Summer Shoes

Yesterday marked the first official day of summer…it’s finally arrived!

It looks like we can safely put away our boots and look towards weather-friendly options. Is your summer footwear in need of a revamp? This is the perfect time to be in the market for new shoes. Sporting Life’s Footwear BOGO is running until June 27th…just enough time to pick up a new pair or two! Not sure where to start? We laid out 6 styles of summer shoes you need to complete your wardrobe.

Summer footwear is all about versatility. With the sun shining, chances are you’ll be happily running from the office to after-work drinks or a weekend at the cottage. With these shoes in your rotation, you’ll be best-dressed no matter where your summer takes you!

1. Rubber Flip-Flops


The ultimate summer staple. Am I the only one who seems to go through a pair every year? Flip-flops are just so affordable, comfortable and easy to wear (and wear out!). The crowd favourite will always be Havainas, which come in a variety of fun colours. Not your style? Reef is another option that screams summer comfort.

2. Dress Up or Down Sandals


While we all wish we could wear rubber flip-flops 24/7 in the summer months, there’s a time and a place. For those days when flip-flops just don’t seem appropriate, pretty sandals have got you covered. No need to lug extra shoes in your purse; a cute sandal can easily take you from the office to a family get-together, or from a day at the beach to a night out. You could go with a classic black pair like this one from Sperry, or bring the 90s back with the Teva Flatform. Either way, you’ll feel put together while maintaining the comfort of an easy sandal!

3. Classic Boat Shoes

sperry 2

Boat shoes are one of the most versatile shoes you can toss in your rotation. You don’t have to worry about getting them wet, and once broken in, they can be worn to the ends of the earth…perfect for travelling or long days spent strolling through cottage country. The best part is that boat shoes complement any outfit, whether it be for work or a casual shopping day. Sperry takes the cake in the boat shoe market…you can’t go wrong with any style!

4. Gym to Street Sneakers


Every busy woman needs a solid pair of crosstrainers that transition from the gym to casualwear. Let’s get real…sneakers are the ultimate hack for looking stylish while still favouring comfort. Nike clearly dominates the field of fashletic sneakers; every pair would serve you well while breaking a sweat, yet look chic with a pair of jeans. Don’t discount other brands quite yet…try a few on and pick the style that best suits your look.

5. White Sneakers


Ahhh, the plain white sneaker. So timeless and practical, so difficult to keep clean. Even for people like me who can’t seem to keep their shoes scuff-free, white sneakers are a must for summer. Who hasn’t seen Stan Smiths on every girl they know this year? They freshen up an outfit in a way that nothing else can…not to mention how cute they look with a dainty summer dress and a jean jacket. If you’re not sure where to look, Vans offers multiple styles and is a good place to start.

6. Funky Rain Boots


When it rains, it pours! Summer storms are necessary to break the crazy Ontario humidity, but they can put a kink in your outfit plans. Finally brands have caught on and offer rain boots that are comfy and fashionable. Rainy days are dreary enough; use your outerwear to brighten up your day! This is your opportunity to be adventurous with your footwear and pick a funky pattern or colour.  Hunter boots come in a wide variety of colours and are definitely worth the investment. Or, go with something different and try some duck boots!


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New Store Opening October 20 at Hillcrest Mall

13. 1406 Hillcrest Exterior

Canada’s most prestigious sporting goods, lifestyle and “fash-letics” retailer Sporting Life announces its first Western Canadian location as part of a national expansion.

On October 20th 2016, Sporting Life will open a 44,000-square-foot Hillcrest Mall location. Blending the best in fashion and the best in sport, along with its signature customer service.

“It’s very exciting bringing the Sporting Life story to these new markets,” says John Roe, Director of Marketing and Advertising at Sporting Life, “Sporting Life is a home-grown Canadian success story with no one quite like us in the industry. We pride ourselves on exceptional customer service in every store.”

The new Sporting Life store will offer shoppers fabulous fashion – casual and sport, footwear and athletic gear. Brands like Canada Goose, Arc’teryx, Spyder, Hugo Boss, Rossignol, Barbour, Ralph Lauren, The North Face, Asics, Nike, to name a few will be available. Sporting Life is known for their ability to choose brands and styles that marry fashion with sport and lifestyle to create a high-end look that is also durable, athletic and technological.

Items from bike, ski, snowboard and racquets can be found and also fashion and footwear for athletic or casual needs plus so much more.

“At Sporting Life we embrace sporting lifestyle like no one else,” continues, Roe. “We like to offer our customers an over the top shopping experience where they can get outfitted from head to toe for their entire family in one store where customer services and high-end quality brands are our mission.”

Sporting Life, famous and successful because of its excellent customer service was founded in Toronto in 1979, and still managed today by co-owners Patti Russell, Brian McGrath and David Russell, as well as many of the long term original store employees.

“It’s an exciting time for us at Sporting Life”, says David Russell Co-Founder of Sporting Life.  “In 2012 we became partners with Prem Watsa and Paul Rivett of Fairfax and this has allowed us to fulfill our ambition of having a small exclusive group of stores across the country in first class locations in great Canadian cities where people enjoy the lifestyle our Toronto customers embrace.”

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