Shape Up Your Bottom Line

Fitness is quite literally fashionable. The craze for yoga and athletic – aka “athleisure” – apparel is outpacing the practice of fitness itself.

While yoga participation grew 4.5 percent in 2013, according to the US Sports and Fitness Industry Association, sales of yoga apparel were up 45 percent percent, says Matt Powell, an analyst for SportsOneSource, a sporting-goods industry tracker.

If your salon, spa, clinic or studio lends itself to it, why not consider joining this booming bandwagon of retail yoga and other fitness wear?

Even if your clients aren’t particularly exercise-oriented, they can just buy the clothes and look like they are!

It will help keep them on trend, give you a point of difference – and, of course, create a new revenue stream.

Fitness and yoga brands have been savvy in broadcasting what’s new and hot (and not), and what celebrities are doing to keep fit and beautiful.

This aspirational pursuit not only keeps fitness fun, it has transformed consumer behaviour, according to the 2015 Spafinder Wellness Spa and Wellness Trends Forecast.

It is making boutique fitness class (and fashion) consumption a kind of retail therapy, where shopping the newest fitness craze provides pleasures and status similar to snagging that latest “it” handbag.

Rumi leggings feature wide waistbands and super-soft breathable fabric

This historic fusion of fitness and fashion is, of course, translating into big business.

For instance, in the US the fitness industry is now worth $22.4 billion, with boutique fitness grabbing ever-bigger market share, to account for more than one in five fitness dollars spent.

Analysts at Barclays bank estimate the US athletic apparel market will increase to more than $100 billion at retail by 2020, driven in large part by consumers snapping up stretchy tops and leggings that will never see the fluorescent lights of a gym, or the ambient lights of a yoga or Pilates studio.

A range that has caught SPA+CLINIC’s eye will also help you contribute to eco-sustainability and recycling.

Rumi Yoga Wear, a Hong Kong-based brand new to our shores, brings to its clothes a philosophy of wellness with the entire range made from sustainable sources, such as recycled plastic bottles – 13.5-16.5 plastic bottles go into one pair of leggings to be exact. And reprocessed coffee grinds are going to be used for their tops.

“The Rumi concept evolved from speaking to the yoga and wellness community,” says brand founder Melissa Chu, who is also a certified yoga teacher. “It was clear to me that the apparel we wore was not contributing positively to our yoga experience.”

The leggings have a barely visible pocket to keep cards, keys and loose change safe

Committed to creating a line of apparel that both allowed its wearers to express their personality and better serve the environment, Melissa insisted on using eco-friendly materials only – the result is breathable, flattering and vibrant yoga wear and everyday apparel, comprised from recycled plastic bottles and stretch Spandex.

“Garbage is a growing problem, too, so finding uses for non-biodegradable materials like plastic is a must,” says Melissa, who is from San Francisco but currently lives in Hong Kong.

“Plastic, once cleaned, shredded, melted and stripped into thread, is indistinguishable from polyester.”

Rumi’s range includes three-quarter and full-length leggings, shorts, accessories such as headbands, all with digitally inspired prints; available exclusively online in Australia at this stage with delivery in three working days.

There are plans to introduce tops, and there is a newly launched range of maternity workout wear (below).


The crossover back of the maternity leggings offers maximum support for the lower back area while keeping the mum-to-be cool during exercise. In the front, a contoured belly panel expands as the wearer grows and can be pulled up or folded down.

“Rumi’s leggings are known for their wide waistbands and inserted gusset lining for extra comfort and exclusive breathable and super soft fabric,” says Melissa.

“Conveniently, for women on the run, all leggings also have a barely-visible pocket to keep cards, keys and loose change safe, and can be thrown into the wash without any worry of colour running.”


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