FITted clothing – entrepreneur Joe Gibson launches leggings for real life gym bodies.
There’s no doubt that when it comes to fitness trends, the last few years have seen a huge rise in weight training, female fitness and the popularity of intense workouts from spin to HIIT and CrossFit.
The knock-on effect of this shift in fitness becoming more mainstream has been a surge in gyms opening up across Leeds, and in particular, more women looking to work out. The #strongnotskinny movement has sparked an increase in female weight training, an area of the gym that was previously heavily dominated by men.
Joe Gibson has seen these trends emerge first-hand, after spending the last 8 years working in the fitness industry. And for Joe, a typical conversation at work last summer sparked his idea for FITted clothing, a new brand of workout wear focused on women’s leggings. He says: “I was ordering more uniforms for staff at the gym I worked at one day and the girls all ordered the same size, despite the fact that they were different heights and builds. When the uniforms arrived, the fit and sizing seemed to be really inaccurate and actually only ended up fitting one of them. This got me thinking about why gymwear for women in particular wasn’t form-fitting and the sizes didn’t reflect real-life body shapes, especially for women who spend a decent amount of time in the gym.
“Typically, women are working out using weights much more and their routine will therefore include exercises such as squats, which can make them self-conscious about what they’re wearing. Also, the body shape that is the result of this type of exercise tends to be a smaller waist and wider lower body, particularly if you’re training legs regularly. There seemed to be a big gap in the market for leggings that catered to this body shape, which is why I decided to create FITted.”
Personally, I know first-hand that finding gym leggings that fit well, look stylish, don’t become transparent when you’re performing deadlifts or squats and aren’t ridiculously expensive are the Holy Grail. But just how did Joe manage to create this game-changing gym essential? He explains: “Finding a supplier was definitely the most time-consuming thing. I spoke with 40 manufacturers globally to source material that could remain opaque, who could provide leggings with a smaller waistband and a larger size lower half, and also include a phone pocket.”
Well, why not – until now, there hasn’t been an immediately obvious place to store your phone on your body whilst you’re working out, and even if you aren’t shamelessly taking a gym selfie, many people keep their training plans on their phones to refer to mid-workout. (As well as taking a gym selfie at the same time.)
But phone pocket aside, the most significant difference about FITted’s leggings is their athletic option. FITted offers standard leggings from sizes 6-14. However, the Athletic fit legging has a lower body that’s created to be one size larger than the waist. For example, if you order an Athletic fit size 10, the leggings are a size 10 waist but fit to size 12 on the hips and legs.
So no more buying leggings a size larger than your waist to fit your lower half into and no more self-conscious see-through moments at the squat rack. It’s a win-win, let’s be honest.
Joe launched FITted in November 2017 with an online store that ships across the UK and he’s already gathered an ambassador fan base including athletes and fitness bloggers. He’s using crowdsourcing via Instagram to choose more colour options, with spring berry available now and khaki coming soon. Joe also has plans to expand the range beyond leggings to sports bras – another area where females have seriously been neglected previously in terms of options to fit real bodies, and a huge opportunity for Joe and FITted to keep making waves in the fitness industry.
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Emma moved to Leeds from her native Birmingham to study at the University 16 years ago. Emma worked in digital, now logistics, and can often be found scrolling through social media, both inside and outside the office, enjoying Leeds’ bar and restaurant scene and then working it all off at the gym. Emma’s diverse interests enable her to write on a range of topics, from tech to food to health.