From walking the dog to carrying out household chores, New Balance’s latest campaign entitled Play New – in collaboration with fitness app Strava – is the most relatable sportswear ad we have seen in a while. 

The sneaker company seems to be embracing the way in which sportswear is worn to carry out activities that may feel not in the least bit sporty. In many ways, New Balance are the sneakers for that – most models aren’t a running shoe but a comfortable and practical fashion statement. 

The timing of this campaign is also impeccably and intelligently ironic. ​​While January used to be a time of shaming people into joining the gym, New Balance is the latest sports brand to take a different approach with its new campaign, Every Runner Has A Reason, which aims to dispel existing myths around what it means to be a runner.

To give extra credibility to this kind of ‘running’, it has launched a new challenge on fitness app Strava to coincide with the campaign, which asks people to run 30k between January 17 and February 13. In return, participants will receive a 10% discount code for New Balance and the chance to earn a place in races including the London Marathon (perhaps a more serious undertaking than running for the bus, admittedly).

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