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Trademark Applications in Sports Nutrition

<p>Terms such as &#8220;performance," &#8220;boost," &#8220;fuel" and variations thereof have been popular with trademark filers in the sports nutrition supplement field, but brands often couple a common term with a second term that is less descriptive of sports supplements, to increase the chances of successful registration.</p>

Supplement manufacturers understand that athletes have extensive nutritional needs both before and after a workout. These brand-owners attempt to use their product names to convey to athletes that they can meet these needs. Terms such as “performance," “boost," “fuel" and variations thereof have been popular with trademark filers in the nutritional supplement field.

Since these terms are common, successful registration often hinges on coupling a second term. The second term should be less common, and less descriptive of sports supplements in order to increase the chances of successful registration. Some of the strongest marks may include a novel or coined word as the second term. Therefore, the first term can indicate to consumers what the product can do; and the second term can be distinctive enough to lead to a registered trademark.

Two of the more common, and arguably descriptive, terms in the sports supplement field are “recovery" and “perform/performance" and variations of these terms.

The data show that the years 2012 to 2016 account for approximately one-third of the filings using the terms “perform" and “recover." While the frequency of the two terms was similar in 2012, the use of “perform" or “performance" increased in the following years. It is possible that the popularity of Gatorade’s “Recover" brand in 2010 kept subsequent filers from using this term. When large players in an industry trademark an important term, it may become difficult for others to use similar terms. This may illustrate the importance of applying for trademarks for brands that will be used soon, in addition to current products.

Learn more about the intellectual property (IP) trends and leaders in sports nutrition recovery and performance in INSDER’s Sports Nutrition Performance Digital Magazine.

Attorney Andreas Baltatzis is a director at KramerAmado PC (, a boutique law firm specializing in intellectual property (IP). He represents a number of innovative nutritional supplement and nutraceutical companies that improve people’s lives every day. Baltatzis also helps companies prepare and implement IP strategies by obtaining patents and trademarks that protect their innovations and cash flow, as well as advising clients on successfully launching new products and brands.

Gideon Eckhouse is a senior associate at KramerAmado, with more than 10 years of experience in patents and trademarks. He assists innovative nutritional supplement and nutraceutical companies in protecting their IP throughout the world. Eckhouse counsels and implements global trademark strategies for new brand launches. Additionally, he prepares and prosecutes patent portfolios protecting new products coming to market.

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