Trends & Features

Industry interview: Vicky Gardner, personal trainer and writer at Sundried

When did you get into the sports trade?
I haven’t always been into sports. I haven’t been part of a competitive team since I was a child and I’d regularly ‘forget’ my gym kit. When I was younger, I hated working out.

When I got to university I gained weight and training became a necessity and a chore, but after a few months I began to feel good about myself again. I started mixing up my workouts with weights and plyometrics and I fell in love with training and it changed my life.

At that point I knew I wanted to do whatever I could to help others feel the same way. So I graduated from university with a degree in English and journalism and qualified as a personal trainer. Who would have thought a few years later I’d be lucky enough to combine my two loves working as a fitness writer for ethical activewear brand Sundried?

What does your role entail?
Lots and lots of words. As the content writer at Sundried, I spend my days writing about whatever is important to us and our customers – from the ethical production of our activewear to how to keep active at work.

I also get to write reviews of the latest fitness wearables, which is awesome and gives me a chance to play with all the coolest toys and gadgets.

Best part of your job?
There’s nothing more satisfying than seeing my name in print, so I love writing about Sundried in fitness magazines and for the national and regional press. In an age where most content is digital, it’s nice to have a physical copy of my work. It’s a novelty that will never wear off.

Proudest professional moment?

This year we attended Bodypower Expo, the largest fitness expo in the UK, where we introduced our brand to 91,124 fitness enthusiasts. It was crazy, but for me the highlight was attendees saying they’ve read my work on My face lit up every time. It was a very rewarding feeling.

Tell us about the company’s ethos
Our ethos promotes responsibility. Sundried partnered with the Low Carbon Innovation Fund to produce our activewear, minimising the carbon footprint through the full lifecycle of our clothing, from its design manufacture to distribution, use and disposal.

Sundried also takes care of staff throughout the supply chain with fair wages and treatment. It’s part of our ethos to share our success and give something back, so every item in our collection has a unique pledge code with a donation to the Water for Kids charity.

You say you’re an ethical fitness brand. What does that mean?

From our production to our staff, we offer transparency in everything we do. As well as partnering with the Low Carbon Innovation Fund and donating to Water for Kids, we also encourage a more ethical lifestyle.

80 per cent of the negative impact of clothing on the environment happens after the purchase – from the chemicals used to clean your clothes to the electricity used to switch on your iron. All our products’ care instructions advise you to ‘wash cool, sun dry’ to create as little impact on our environment as possible.

We’re ethical in the office too. As all our staff are personal trainers, we know the dangers of sitting for too long, so we created EHOH – Every Hour On the Hour we complete a mini workout, getting our heart rates up and minimising the damage to our bodies from sitting at a desk all day.

Tell us about your range
Our first range is small but diverse and is designed to be multifunctional. It features activewear that can be worn from the office to cycling, running to yoga. The collection was created by leading designers in the industry to be stylish and functional and then trialled by leading triathletes and personal trainers to ensure it performed under pressure.

We’ve just gone live and the response so far has been great. Our activewear meets its high expectations and we’re looking forward to what the future holds.

What’s the brand’s USP?
How many fitness brands can say they’re ethical? Being a fitness brand to Sundried is more than just clothing, it’s a lifestyle choice. What makes us different is we’re creating quality clothing that performs and is produced ethically from start to finish, so those who wear it can be proud of their activewear’s journey.

Plans for the brand for the rest of the year?
We’ve got a busy year ahead. We will be attending World Power Expo in London this July, The Sport and Fitness Show and triathlon in Brighton this September, Southend 10k in October and the Basse Belle 10-miler in Bassingbourn this November, to name a few.

For more information email Jess Tonking, Sundried marketing manager, at or visit

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