After a long and exciting year, over the next two weeks we are going to be posting our list of top five brands of 2014. Today to kick it all off we are going to name the company in at 5th place, the one of a kind MAN Sports. Long time followers will already know what our top five is based on, but for those new this year it’s essentially a run down of the top performing brands of the year. The things we look out for include the number of supplement releases and impact they have on the competition, as well as other major moves such as philosophy and how much they give back to their fans. With all of those and more factored in against all the companies out there, MAN is in at number five here today with our many reasons as to why they’re ranked among the best detailed below.
MAN Sports started off the year with the launch of their second Micro Batch individual formula Glutamine Peptides, which at the time was confirmed to be followed by another. As promised the brand did end up releasing a third, with the straightforward product CLA Powder. The duo put MAN on roll as it was from there that it all just kept coming. Around this time one of our top ranked pre-workouts Game Day got another flavor, seeing fruit punch, candy grape, blue bomb-sicle, and tigers blood joined by the Natural Body exclusive #TremendousWhiteGrape. The taste officially took MAN’s energizing menu up to a total of five, and was really the last thing we saw the brand give their original Game Day for the year.
Moving on to the second quarter of 2014, MAN confirmed the coming of an international version of their pre-workout Game Day. Unlike a lot of their competitors the brand didn’t just remove a few ingredients, or simply swap out non-compliant features for whatever fitted. MAN ended up actually putting together an entirely different version, one we did in fact get to review. Not only did the alternate Game Day prove that the brand could produce more than one modern pre-workout, but they could do so even with the rules and regulations put on them by the countries due to get the international edition.
Around the middle of the year MAN kept their consistent release rate going, introducing a new item of clothing and announcing a major development. In celebration of July 4th, the brand went as all-american as they could producing the bright yellow Manamania tee. The limited edition item went on sale for the rather nice price of $25, low enough and awesome enough that even we had to grab one. As for the big announcement from MAN, in August the brand started distributing their apparel outside of their own store passing on stock to Bodybuilding.com. While it didn’t introduce anything new from MAN, it gave fans of the brand a chance to pick up some of MAN’s clothing and accessories with their monthly stack or stock up, instead of purchasing separately direct. Unfortunately following on from the apparel updates, before we got the chance to start looking forward to the Olympia, the brand posted some disappointing news. The much loved protein replacement Pure PF3, which did end up making it all the way to the Protein Wars semi-finals this year, was confirmed as soon to be discontinued. The reason behind the move was that the main ingredient in the formula was no longer available for dietary supplement production. At the moment it is still on sale in a number of locations, although is eventually going to be gone for good.
It was in the months following all the above action where things started getting really good, and MAN some how picked up their game even more. Just before September the brand unveiled their custom super scooper, a unique addition to the company’s hit pre-workout Game Day featuring the line “every day is game day” along its handle. Next up MAN relaunched their complex creatine product Clout, offering the supplement to both fans here in the US and those overseas in Europe within reach of a Prometeus supplied store. Soon after the arrival of Clout the brand added a new color variant of their classic duffel bag, keeping the original product’s black base color and design, but switching out its white print for yellow.
Closing out the year it was all supplements seeing MAN release three formulas, with additions to some of those products both launched and confirmed. The brand’s Australian exclusive Pure ALCAR was the first to arrive in the last few months of 2014, quadrupling MAN’s Micro Batch basics selection. A month or so after Pure ALCAR came and went, the brand introduced two supplements that really solidified their spot in our top five list of brands. The two products were the focus and pump powered pre-workout NOO Pump, and the incredibly well flavored ISO-Amino. We did manage to get a hold of and review both formulas, only proving how true to their claims MAN were. To sum up the duo as quickly as possible, NOO Pump is without a doubt one of the most interesting experiences you’ll come across, delivering calm controllable focus, and intense centered pump. As for ISO-Amino the brand basically showed how well a BCAA could be flavored, with the candy recipe sour batch kids and its three other tastes blue bomb-sicle, mighty melon and tigers blood. Much to our surprise since the launch of those two formulas, MAN have released taste number two for NOO Pump in blueberry pomination, and revealed that four more ISO-Amino candy recipes are on the way and due to land early next year.
If you watched MAN for a month or even two, their moves may not have seemed overly impressive, about what you’d expect from most brands really. Once however you’ve looked at what MAN have achieved as a whole in a year, you can’t help but appreciate their massive effort. 2014 was filled with new supplements as well as updates for a couple, with two of those new supplements being category changing. Despite the beginning of the year seeing relatively straightforward launches and developments, NOO Pump really set the standard for the pump and focus combination category and ISO-Amino doing the same in terms of flavor for aminos. MAN’s creative ability was already proven in the performance of the international Game Day, with the last two for the year really just increasing MAN’s reputation and seeing them raise the bar where nobody else could. We now look forward to 2015, as the brand are expected to keep it all going through to the new year where we’re finally going to see MAN’s fat burner Lean PhD, and the ISO-Amino Candy Series possibly all before the Arnold.