Athleta turns up heat on rivals with new wellness platform; supports Biles

Marianne Wilson
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AthletaWell Spaces

Athleta is upping its game.

Gap Inc.’s women’s athletic apparel brand is launching AthletaWell, a digital platform exclusively for members of its rewards program. The platform will offer content that includes workout videos  and “safe” spaces for women to connect on a range of topics rooted in female wellbeing, including  fitness, health, body positivity and more.

The launch comes amid soaring sales for Athleta, which has some 200 stores nationwide. The brand plans to open between 20 and 30 stores annually across North America in line with its goal of doubling the business by 2023. As part of the expansion, Athleta will enter the home turf of rival Lululemon. 

Athleta reward members will be able to access the new platform on the brand’s web site. Membership in Athleta Rewards, which is part of Gap Inc.’s new integrated rewards program, is free. It’s estimated that more than 50% of Athleta sales come from its reward members.

[Read More: Gap revamps rewards program across core brands]  

In connection with AthletaWell, Athleta is partnering with Obé Fitness, a digital fitness platform. Obé Fitness will provide workout videos for free on AthletaWell. Four new workouts will launch each month.

AthletaWell will also offer members access to “guides,” including leaders in female wellbeing, ranging from nutritionists to yoga teachers, as well as virtual and in-person events, led by guides and VIP guests, to help Athleta shoppers create community. New content, spaces and guides will be added on an ongoing basis.

We’ve heard from our customers that well-being is a complex journey, rich with questions and there isn't a place where women can talk about it holistically or discover the best solutions,” said Kim Waldmann, chief digital officer, Athleta. “We’re excited to offer AthletaWell, a new digital platform for women to help each other navigate the complexities of modern-day womanhood and to connect our customers in a way that will enhance their overall experience with the brand in a meaningful way, thus, creating even more brand loyalty over time.”

Athleta has endorsement deals with a number of prominent athletes, including Simone Biles, who dropped out of the women’s team final and individual all-around competitionat the Tokyo Games, saying she had to focus on her mental health. Athleta issued a statement of support.