Athleisure has been a buzzword for a few years now, and traditionally refers to clothes that are both practical and stylish enough to wear in and outside a fitness studio. It was not only sport apparel brands creating these threads, either; luxury houses were quick to jump on the athleisure bandwagon, with Hermes, Valentino and Tod's all releasing collections.
When Dubai residents Aurore Nio, Dimitris Karakassis and Saeed Al Naji launched their online “fitness and lifestyle concept store” Ninjoo in January, they did so with the insight that “while athleisure clothing continued to advance, stylish fitness accessories remained largely off the shelves of traditional sports retailers”.
Accordingly, Ninjoo stocks fitness equipment with a twist; its catalogue features several exclusive-to-the-UAE products and brands, including Avora, Bredder, Equa, Halfmoon, Hyperice, Tangram, Powerdot, Rocktape, RS Barcelona, Rumbleroller, Senda and Shakesphere, with prices ranging from Dh100 to hundreds of thousands of dirhams.
So whether it’s looks you’re after or high-tech gadgetry, here is where you go when you want a limited-edition set of gold dumb-bells or a state-of-the-art skipping rope.
Scroll through the gallery above to see the one-off fitness products in the Ninjoo stable.
Here are some items available in the UAE exclusively via Ninjoo.
Solid gold Loft dumb-bells from Hock
Given the UAE’s penchant for all things gold when it comes to food, fashion and furniture, why should fitness be left behind? The German brand founded by Kristoff Hock in 2009 offers a set of made-to-order dumb-bells made from 18-karat gold, totalling 1.5 kilograms of solid gold for the pair. The grip is made from Grenadilla, or African blackwood, and the dumb-bells come in a handcrafted wooden storage case.
RS2 gold football table from RS Barcelona
Don’t be fooled by the 24k gold that’s gone into making this gaming table (right down to the gold-plated ball bearings and screws); it is, its industrial designers promise us, intended “for intense use and for indoor and outdoor use”. The legs and handles of the 84kg table are made from darkened iroko wood, and its miniature players are dressed in gold and silver chrome plating.
Racka set of essential fitness accessories – silver edition from Pent
Pent is a luxury gym equipment company that uses the finest of materials – think oiled walnut wood grips and stainless steel finishes – in its collections that can be found in high-end home gyms and on private yachts. The Racka stand, while striking in itself, comes with some of the brand’s best-loved lines: the Sienna skipping rope, Lipova push-up bars, Mata fitness mat, Mesna 65-centimetre fitness ball, Tresna balance ball and Rola stretching roller.
Ninjoo is also the only UAE stockist of Pent’s Raxa boxing bag and gloves set, handmade from premium leather and priced at Dh8,800.
Pualani Shorty handmade balance board by Bredder
Handmade in Germany, Bredder balance boards are known for their meticulous quality – think 10 layers of certified birch wood glued together and protected by a special semi-gloss – and they look fabulous to boot. The Ninjoo price is inclusive of a board and roller, with the former able to take up to 120kg of weight.
Beach paddle tennis set from Avora
Handmade in Spain, where Avora has a century-old wood-crafting workshop, these paddle tennis bats are assembled from marine plywood and finished with a varnish tested against sea, sun and sand. Boasting an ergonomic grip and bevelled edges, the paddles come in a striking neoprene carrying case, available in navy blue or green.
Chrome smart rope by Tangram
If you’re addicted to gadgets and apps that track your steps, you’ll love this smart skipping rope that keeps count of your jumps by connecting to an app. Neater still, you can challenge your friends remotely, create groups and compare yourself to all users around the world. Coolest of all, the rope comes with an LED panel that lights up at different times as the rope rotates around you, showing you a digital display of your jump count floating in mid-air.
LED light-up Volt basketball from Chance
The Los Angeles brand is all about self-expression, and this effortless cool basketball comes installed with two high-bright LED lights that glow when the ball is in play and shut down 30 seconds after it stops moving. Other features include a pebble pattern and deep channels for better grip and control; and a butyl bladder to lock in air for optimal ball pressure, shape retention and consistent bounce.