“At New Balance, we have a really diverse roster of collaborations and partners. So when we look to work with new partners, essentially, we look at other brands or individuals’ core values and their direction and they’re often innovative in their own right,” Frank Clyburn, North American marketing manager at New Balance, told WWD. “The partnership with Bala came together really organically, just because they’re doing amazing things in the fitness world. And adding Bala to our mix of partners allows us to talk to a new audience and fill in as many needs of theirs as possible.”
Natalie Holloway, cofounder of Bala, said she’s equally excited about the collaboration, adding that the partnership will allow both brands to lean into new product categories while leveraging each other’s unique fanbase.
“We’ve always looked up to New Balance, because we both have movement at our core,” said Holloway, who launched Bala in 2018 with husband Maximilian Kislevitz. “Creatively, we worked on the colors [of the collaboration] together. So if you work out in the New Balance outfit and you wear either of the Bala products, they look nice together. At Bala, we like to say we’re the antidote to the ultra serious fitness world. We’re a brand that is all about play and movement and colorful items.”
The limited-edition New Balance x Bala collaboration, which launches today, is no different. The collection consists of hot pink and gold tank tops with matching leggings covered with New Balance lettering. There’s also two different Bala Bangles, or ankle weights, a 15-pound long bar Bala Beam and two styles of previously released New Balance sneakers that Clyburn said meshed perfectly with the new pieces in the collection.
“We wanted to focus on really showing the best of what we have already in our women’s footwear line,” he explained.
Meanwhile, the activewear and at-home fitness markets have exploded during the pandemic, with no end in sight. Still, both brands agreed it is important to continually offer new at-home fitness and apparel options nonetheless.
“Being at-home in general, as [part of] people’s lifestyle, is here to stay,” Holloway said. “Everyone has kind of set themselves up for at-home, cutting out the commute to and from the gym, or the studio, and working out in their living rooms. So, I don’t see why people wouldn’t still do an at-home play at least a couple times a week.”
Clyburn added, “There’s so much innovation that we’re seeing in the at-home fitness space [right now]. At-home fitness is a convenient opportunity for people to maintain an active lifestyle. This collaboration was an opportunity for us to lean into a new way of life for today’s consumer.”
Shoppers can purchase the New Balance x Bala collection at newbalance.com and Shopbala.com. Prices range from $55 to $99 for Bala fitness equipment and $45 to $80 for apparel pieces. Apparel sizes run from XS to XL in tops and XS to 2XL in bottoms.