You may not have known it had a name but you've definitely seen this rising trend. Athleisure has come a long way from just women wearing yoga pants outside of the gym. Now CEOs are wearing sneakers to board meetings and tri-blend sport tees under their blazer. Corporate America isn't as 'buttoned-up' as it once was, partly due to the rise of fitness-conscious consumers who look at athletics not only as a hobby but also as an all-around lifestyle. For those that never go near a gym but who are enjoying athleisure, this trend meets consumers' desire for clothing to be comfortable, while still being functional in a professional environment.
Numbers are proving this is no passing fad but a real industry game-changer. "Casual and 'athleisure' have taken on a life of their own," said Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst, The NPD Group, Inc. "This is no longer a trend, it is now a lifestyle that is too comfortable, for consumers of all ages, for it to go away anytime soon." As the trend grows, well-known athletic brands are taking notice. Many companies are introducing an athleisure section in addition to their bread and butter fitness collections, positioning themselves outside the gym. We are seeing brands that used to align exclusively with team sports now coming into the corporate market.
There is no doubt athleisure has blurred the line between casual and corporate, causing businesses to update their dress code. With these changes we continue to see a new selection of products for events and promotions. Gone are the days of the standard long sleeved button up. Now our clients are demanding durable, lightweight, breathable poly fabrics for comfort and all-day performance.
We don't see this trend leaving any time soon. It's more than a fad, it's a complete lifestyle shift and we're keeping our finger on the pulse to keep our clients current.