The Beginning: Active Elixir

The story of Active Elixir is inextricably wrapped up with my own journey into Acro.  When I started the practice four years ago, I didn't know what to wear. I figured others must have the same problem, and I wasn't satisfied with "just making it work." Why not create something that can fill a need?

The concept of creating a clothing line became more than a fleeting thought. As my passion for Acro grew into a full blown love affair, I knew I had to make moves instead of just thinking about what I wanted to do. My heart and mind shifted their focus from my job to the possibilities of what I could do with Acro. The #ridetherob project was building a lot of momentum, and many studios approached me to teach. With so many amazing opportunities knocking at my door, I felt like it was time for a change. I needed to answer the call and see what adventures await.  It's a risk I knew I had to take.  About a year and a half ago, I parted ways with my job of 18 years to follow my dream of doing Acro wherever I go, teaching Acro all over the world, screenshotting videos of me doing Acro during my travels and adventures, and creating apparel for not only acrobats but for all sorts of people of movement.  Active Elixir was born.

Rob Li lifts up a woman wearing Active Elixir apparel.

Starting an apparel company is a lot of work, and I'm learning more about the industry each day.  Almost every night before bed and every morning when I wake up, I am talking to my contacts in Asia.  My search for reliable manufacturers that can take my ideas and create quality products has led me down some interesting roads. I'm very thankful to Gozde Yilmaz of Atelier 5, a Philly based artist and manufacturer that gave me a chance because she believed in me and in my vision.  The support of my friends and various Acro communities have been tremendous.  No matter what happens, I am so grateful for the amazing people that have helped me and believed in me. I'm doing it, friends!

Active Elixir is designed to fit the needs of specific movement communities.  Items are designed with ideas I've had, recommendations from friends, or random inspirations, and once they're realized, I test the prototypes on people who are actively involved in the practice.  I listen to what they want, gather feedback on the piece, make changes, and try again until it's perfect -- functional, comfortable, well-made, and stylish. I offer a direct line to someone who can make the changes you've always wanted to see in apparel, especially for your practice.

All that's left is to place the order and hope that when all is said and done, I don't end up with an absurd amount of women's clothing in my apartment.

Your friend that's always willing to lift you up and listen,
Rob Li