Today’s guest is Nikola Mrvaljevic. Nikola is the co-founder and CEO of Strive, a human performance company. Strive enables clothing with technology to capture performance insights to empower real-time decision-making. By outfitting an athlete’s clothing with their technology, it allows coaches & trainers to compare body input to body output, and provides insights on muscle activity including load, symmetry, and fatigue. So, as an example, as athletes near the end of a hard practice, coaches will be able to see through Strive if certain individuals are beginning to favor one side of the body vs another or if certain muscles are exerting excessive amounts of load. The inspiration to start Strive started many years before Nikola officially founded the company. As a pro basketball player in Montenegro, he often asked himself why his coaches were having the team do these workouts that would leave them overly fatigued. If only there could be a way to help coaches understand how their players are feeling – hence the beginning of the idea for Strive. In this interview, we get into Nikola’s time growing up in Montenegro, his pro basketball career, and all things Strive.
00:02:27 Growing up in Montenegro and culture
00:07:56 Playing pro basketball in Montenegro
00:13:53 Biggest takeaways from playing pro basketball
00:16:40 Questioning his coach's training methods
00:19:53 Moving to the US and adjusting to the culture
00:25:18 Going to University of Rhode Island (URI) and doing research for Strive
00:28:04 Time between URI and starting Strive
00:34:35 Strive overview
00:38:07 Strive's technology
00:41:02 Example use case of Strive
00:45:06 Thoughts on partnering with other human performance companies
00:46:07 Strive business model
00:47:42 Target markets
00:52:52 Product roadmap
00:56:41 Fundraising for Strive
01:00:15 Impact of the pandemic on the business
01:02:21 Ultimate vision for Strive
01:06:33 Pivotal moments that changed his perspective on human performance
01:08:45 Being a Thalassophile
01:10:34 What he wants to accomplish 5 years from now
01:13:40 His daily routine
01:15:25 His driving force
01:17:58 Parting words of wisdom for the aspiring entrepreneur
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