Shaleena and Roshni are the brains behind Bella Kinesis – a sports fashion range with heart. For every garment sold, they fund a business education for a woman. We wanted to find out more so pinned these young entrepreneurs down for questioning – about their business and their healthy lifestyle.
When does Bella Kinesis officially launch?
We’ve had a few setbacks but we will be launching next month (fingers crossed as we don’t want to jinx it!).
Where did you get the name for Bella Kinesis from?
It was quite random really. Last Christmas we were ice-skating and as Shaleena saw Roshni struggle to let go of the side of the rink she started to scream ‘telekinesis’ with her hand out to encourage Roshni to let go of the side. About a month later when we were stuck for a name, Roshni remembered the word and being a language nerd, she somehow came up with Bella Kinesis. The name is a hybrid of Italian and Greek and loosely translates to mean ‘beautiful movement’.
How did you two meet and who initially sparked the idea?
We’ve been friends since childhood. Our families have known each other for generations! Roshni originally had an idea for a yogawear brand but when we decided to work together the idea for Bella Kinesis grew to what it is now.
What was your inspiration for setting this up?
We started getting active around the same time and when we went shopping together for workout clothes, we found that there was a lack of fun, functional and well-priced sportswear in the market for women of all sizes. Concurrently, we were both spending a lot of time in India and were appalled by the never-ending cases of violence against women in the newspapers. We needed to address this issue. We wanted to create something that inspires and empowers both ourselves and women worldwide.
How did you find the right charity to work with?
We did lots of research on different NGOs but agreed on Mann Deshi because we really loved the work that they were doing. Giving women a business education not only gives them financial independence but also self-confidence and earns them the respect of men around them. Projects like this have a domino effect; these courageous women inspire other women resulting in a real change in attitude in villages, then cities and finally on a national level.
What kind of sports are your clothes made for?
Our collection is designed for all kinds of workouts. Our fabrics contain different properties such as, muscle compression, moisture-wicking, 4-way stretch and 100% opaqueness so each garment is tailored with a specific exercise in mind. You can wear Bella Kinesis for running, yoga, pilates or general gym fitness.
What’s different about your fitness fashion line from others?
Shaleena has a BFA in Photography and Graphic Design so we created our own digital print and will continue to do so for every new collection. Being different sizes, we made sure that all of our items were designed to be flattering from XS to XL. We’ve also personally tested all the garments (in all kinds of weird workouts) to make sure they really do what they say on the tin.
What is your favourite piece from the collection?
For Shaleena, it’s our No Jiggity high-support bra as she’s always struggled to find the perfect bra that not only looks good but also functions well.
For Roshni, it’s our Bend and Snap yoga leggings because they’re uber stretchy and great for posing in.
Who should be shopping for Bella Kinesis?
Well, we hope everyone does! Bella Kinesis is for women who work hard are looking to improve themselves in all kinds of ways.
What has been your biggest challenge so far?
Sourcing the materials and finding the right manufacturer were our biggest challenges. We’ve personally chosen every zip, cup, and stitch that has gone into our garments. We’re both new to the garment business so we chose to manufacture in the UK so that we could see firsthand how the clothes were made.
Where have you gotten your inspiration for your fitness gear?
When wanted to keep our first collection simple. We made a list of all the features we wanted to incorporate and from that drew our original designs. We love trends and want to incorporate some into our clothes, but would never do so at the expense of the functionality of the garment. Some brands call themselves sportswear but are really leisurewear, our products are engineered to be high performance above anything else.
Who are your favourite fitness brands?
You do a lot of fitness sessions – what’s next on your list of things to do?
Next on our list are Suppa Jump, TRX and CrossFit. We’re just mustering the courage to book ourselves in!
Favourite healthy restaurant or cafe in London?
Greenberry Café in Primrose Hill.
Favourite fitness class so far?
Despite usually going for different types of workouts, we both love Hotpod Yoga!
Healthy snack you can’t live without?
Shaleena is better in the kitchen. She makes her own almond butter and spreads it on Rude Health Oaty Thins with sliced bananas.
Roshni has an odd obsession with wholewheat couscous. She’s convinced it goes with everything.
Top health tip for people wanting to kickstart a healthier lifestyle?
Don’t be afraid to go it on your own. You can be your own motivation. Workout buddies are great but you can’t always rely on them. As an adult, starting new things can always be a bit nerve-racking but you have to put yourself out there so you can really find what you love.
Who’s been your biggest health inspiration so far?
We have a mutual friend who never used to be fit and this year she ran the London Marathon. She’s by far our most intense friend but we love her for it and is a living testament to the idea that you can do anything if you put your mind to it.