SNEWS Qs: The North Face's Kevin Joyce talks yoga - SNEWS

SNEWS Qs: The North Face's Kevin Joyce talks yoga

Yoga category has proven fruitful for The North Face.
Author:
Updated:
Original:

While The North Face is focusing on getting its “trail cred” back — according to this story in Bloomberg, anyway — it’s also been branching out to activities like yoga.

With yoga continuing to gain popularity, we’re seeing more yoga products from traditional outdoor companies, and more yoga companies exhibiting at outdoor trade shows.

Yoga Journal’s 2012 Yoga in America Market Study showed that 20.4 million Americans practice yoga, a 29 percent increase from the 2008 study. Plus, 44.4 percent of people surveyed call themselves “aspirational yogis” which means they are interested in trying the activity.

SNEWS posed some questions to Kevin Joyce, director of performance apparel for The North Face, about its yoga business and how it’s helped the brand overall. Plus, he addresses the potential overcrowding of the yoga apparel category.

When did the North Face begin to offer yoga apparel and accessories?
Women's active and training apparel has been a part of the performance line for quite a while, but we launched yoga-specific apparel in 2010 to address one of the many ways we find our athletes train for their sports.

TNFYoga

What was the reason behind this move?
We make apparel for our athletes when they're doing their sports, but our training collections, including yoga, are designed to take care of them when they're training for their sports. We wanted our athletes to have the best possible training apparel and footwear as well. We found many of our athletes use yoga, among other activities, for strength training, to improve balance and core strength and stretching in between workouts. We've always said yoga makes you a stronger athlete.

How has the yoga business been for the company? How has it grown since launched?
The yoga collection has grown since we first launched in 2010, and we're continuing to grow women's active training apparel in general. We know that both women and men are looking for versatility in their training apparel, so we've been expanding women's active to include apparel designed for yoga and other activities that require durable, active stretch construction and fabrics.

Do you think the yoga apparel category is getting crowded?
There is a big opportunity in training and yoga both. Our perspective is that there is always room for the best-in-class apparel.

How have you seen the number of yoga-related companies at OR grow over the years?
There are definitely more companies showing their yoga product at Outdoor Retailer, but they aren't necessarily new companies, just new to OR.

In the past, if climbers wanted to get better at climbing, they would climb more. If a runner wanted to run further or faster, they would just run more. Now, most professional outdoor athletes use a combination of training techniques to avoid injury and improve performance. We've found the apparel that exists on the market, particularly for men, just isn't cutting it. We've seen a big opportunity to offer technology-driven and purpose-built training apparel, and that's why we've launched Mountain Athletics, the next evolution of technical training apparel and footwear.

Related

Pink

SNEWS Qs: CrossFit about community, competition

Functional, CrossFit-type workouts are creeping into the training programs for athletes from everyday folks to mountain athletes. That's because functional fitness not only helps people get fit, but also helps avoid injuries during everyday activities by creating a more agile ...read more

AnneCavassaThumb

SNEWS Qs: Brooks Sports Anne Cavassa talks role models and challenges

As an avid runner, Anne Cavassa has a rather intimate relationship with her running shoes — and the love of her life is the Brooks Adrenaline. “It’s been my shoe forever,” Cavassa said. “It’s taken me through many miles, many marathons and many injuries. I’ve tried other shoes ...read more

YogaGlyphsThumb

SNEWS Qs: There are enough yoga pants; it’s time to focus on shirts

Women consumers often like to support female-led companies like YogaGlyphs, a new yoga apparel company co-founded by Tiffany Breckenridge. SNEWS recently chatted with Breckenridge about her new line of shirts, which she will launch at the outdoor industry’s upcoming Outdoor ...read more

BobWhipBHNorthAmericaCEOThumb

SNEWS Qs: New BH CEO talks background, challenges

BH North America recently appointed Bob Whip to CEO after Steve Lindenau was tapped to lead BH Bikes. Whip brings more than 25 years of experience to the post, having served previously as president of Johnson Health Tech Wellness and Leisure, and Horizon Fitness, after ...read more

W_Ultra_Kilowatt_Green_BlueThumb

The North Face brings strength to performance apparel, footwear

It’s not just CrossFit that’s taking over the fitness scene — it’s functional training in general. Athletes are craving activities that make them stronger, faster and better at what they do, from climbing to trail running. Tucked away in Jackson Hole, Wyo. is a facility called ...read more

AgassiReyes

SNEWS Qs: BILT by Agassi & Reyes' Steve Miller talks history, future

Andre Agassi was remarkable young tennis player, and he staged an even more remarkable comeback in the late 1990s. Now the fitness industry is privy to a key factor in his success — the equipment longtime coach Gil Reyes built with Agassi to help him train with high intensity ...read more

Fitness Equipment

SNEWS Qs: Lifecore's Roger Bates talks new cardio for CrossFit

Usually Roger Bates and his fitness equipment company Lifecore are staples at the upcoming Health and Fitness Business Expo, but this year they will be absent. Mostly, he said, it is because he gets a bigger return on his investment at shows like IHRSA and Athletic Business ...read more

BarryMcGeough

SNEWS Qs: Barry McGeough talks water, Zumba and lessons for the fitness industry

Barry McGeough has spent the majority of his career in the outdoor industry, first working for The North Face, then Teva and Deckers Outdoor Corporation. Now, with the partnership between Speedo and Aqua Zumba, the vice president of hard goods at Speedo USA is making a splash in ...read more

ZootSNEWSQs

SNEWS Qs: Zoot’s missing the party, but is still bringing treats

Outdoor Retailer is like the big party everybody wants to go to, but not everyone can make it. This time around, a lot of companies are missing out on the fun, like Isis and Zoot Sports, but they have some cool, notable products (and some great insight to industry trends). We ...read more