Earlier this month, Nike unveiled its first yoga-specific shoe, the Studio Wrap. The shoe will be available this coming February for $110. (Read up on yoga, one of the oldest practiced philosophies in the world.)
Shoes worn in the yoga studio—as opposed to those worn before and after yoga—have not generated much interest from target consumers. But Nike hopes to change that. The Studio Wrap, a three-part footwear system—including a wrap, ribbon, and flat—is designed for those who practice yoga in studios that prohibit bare feet.
(Looking for a perfect warm-up/cool-down? Check out STACK’s Yoga for Athletes.)
Yoga shoes are, thanks to the nature of yoga itself, generally unnecessary. However, Nike is hoping its yoga shoes will sell well, based mostly on their aesthetic appeal. Good news for Nike: the timing couldn’t be better. According to the Yoga Journal, yoga participation has increased 30% since 2008, with current participants numbering 20.4 million. Meanwhile, yoga supply spending has seen an even more impressive increase: $10.3 billion in 2012 ($2.2 billion on apparel alone)—an 80 percent increase over 2008.
(Check out our list of 10 Athletes and Teams You Might Not Think Would Practice Yoga.)
Nike announced its move into yoga-inspired clothing in its Women’s Spring/Summer 2013 Look Book, which featured the Tadasana Capri—pants intended to provide range of motion for yoga, barre, and pilates.