How Important Is The Athleisure Trend For Spring 2016?

Vionic Sneakers Spring 2016
A Vionic spring '16 sneaker style.
Courtesy of brand.

Chris Gallagher
President & CEO, Vionic Group

“Today, active-inspired footwear is our second-largest category behind sandals. [Women] wearing active gear in a casual environment is [a trend that’s] in full force. We’ve also noticed the shifting attitudes of baby boomers as they work to stay active and healthy. An increasing number of gyms are tailoring age-appropriate workouts, and many people are taking ‘fitcations’ — vacations based on fitness. In response, the idea of post-workout recovery [looks] is something we’re exploring, with active sandals that go to and from activities and can even be worn during a workout.”

Jan Brinkmann
President, Tamaris USA

“The athleisure trend will gain momentum this season. Besides the smart functional items and casual lifestyle this footwear represents, it’s also a fashion statement. [Luckily, in our category], many features developed for athletics can be used as comfort-enhancing elements, such as flexibility, breathability and shock absorption. Some of our sneakers incorporate real yoga mat insoles, so the wearer gets instant gratification.”

Tamaris Sneakers Spring 2016 A Tamaris sneaker style for spring ’16. Courtesy of brand.

Katie Moore
Lead footwear designer, Dr. Scholl’s

“The athleisure trend is going to continue to gain traction as consumers embrace a healthier lifestyle. And everyday comfort is not something that’s going away — even our casual shoes take cues from performance technology. In our sport series, for instance, the Atlas, [a sporty Mary Jane], is influenced by activewear, with stretch uppers and stitch detail. Overall, our constructions are more built up, with cushioning in mind.”

Felix Zahan
Product director, Ecco Americas

“Active lifestyle is a growing global consumer trend. We’re [addressing it] with yoga/athletic-inspired looks — products with a feminine touch done in modern materials that work with [activewear]. And this spring, we’re launching Ecco Intrinsic, representing the active-lifestyle sneaker trend, but designed to be edgier to appeal to a younger consumer. Our [performance] athletic footwear is built for a workout. However, many consumers wear it when walking or traveling because of the comfort [features].”

Ecco Sneakers Spring 2016 An Ecco sneaker style from spring ’16. Courtesy of brand.

Christine Bender
SVP of marketing, Easy Spirit

“Athleisure is about looking good while feeling comfortable. Everyone is striving to live a healthier, more active life, so footwear must become increasingly versatile and less formal. For spring ’16, we’ve created shoes to keep up with [our active customer]. We have a metallic ballet flat with a sneaker-inspired sole that looks chic when paired with leggings or a shift-style dress.”