Africa’s superman swaps his cape for a viking helm.
Peak performance coach Cobus Visser, known as Africa’s Superman, has undergone a brand transformation to reflect his personal and professional growth. Introduced on 2 November 2022 – his 40th birthday – his new persona, Cobus Visser the Viking, better expresses this new stage of his life and business.
According to the renowned South African author, speaker, trainer, facilitator, life coach and firewalking instructor, the rebrand has been inspired by several factors. “Since climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in 2018 I have changed as a person. I have also undergone tremendous personal growth since first launching my brand in 2012, and I have just turned 40, so this is the start of a new chapter in my life,” says Cobus. “Then of course, there is the beard!”
For Cobus, deciding on his new persona was self-evident as his values are naturally aligned with those of the Vikings. “There are nine Viking values: heart, courage, perseverance, honour, discipline, action, consistency, truth, and fidelity. These resonate with me on a deep level and my goal going forward is to not only embrace these values in my own life, but to encourage and inspire others to do the same.”
The great-grandson of South Africa’s first president, CR Swart, Cobus was born in Vereeniging and matriculated from Hoërskool Piet Potgieter in Potgietersrus, Limpopo. After being diagnosed with haemophilia as a child and enduring excruciating pain for years, Cobus found himself in the hospital, unable to move, in 2013. Instead of giving up, he decided his body would no longer be his prison.
He initially donned the Superman persona as he identified with the famous character’s alter ego, Clark Kent. “As I child I often had to stay home sick, and my dad would rent Superman movies to keep me entertained. I related to Clark Kent as I was shy and reserved. I was also bullied because I was different. Firewalking became my superpower and taking on the mantle of Superman allowed me to truly live and grow. It made me feel like nothing was impossible.”
Having since achieved several personal and professional milestones, including climbing Mount Kilimanjaro on crutches in 2018, the time had come to revisit his brand identity.
Cobus sees firewalking as a metaphor for discovering yourself and focusing on what you want to achieve and decided to specialise in it after first completing a firewalk in 2011. “My health initially led me down this path, and I completed my training at the Firewalking Institute of Research and Education (F.I.R.E) in America on 14 November 2012. Following my divorce in 2017, I decided to turn this passion into my my purpose.”
He now wants to push his purpose even further not only through firewalking, but also through his unique empowerment programme for men called Viking Wolfpack, which is focused on helping great men become warriors. “I want to challenge men to stand up for what is right and to do so with honour and empathy. I want them to know that they can live a life of peak performance. I also want to share a message of unconditional love and hope for tomorrow with others. Every one of us is capable of so much and we can achieve anything if we put our minds to it,” he explains.
Cobus possesses an insatiable appetite for helping others and, despite being in constant pain, for continuously growing and challenging himself. With the rebrand, he hopes to establish himself as a global leader in peak performance coaching and, as this Superman turned Viking has already proven, nothing is impossible.
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