Episode 37: Making the Cycling Industry Inclusive for Women of All Shapes & Sizes with Jenn Kriske

Why We Love Jenn:

Jenn Kriske is the founder of Machines for Freedom, a high performance apparel brand for women in the cycling community. She landed on the idea for the company after realizing what basically every woman who has ever taken up cycling eventually realizes – that the bike industry didn’t give a shit about women. 

Machines for Freedom has created palpable changes in the cycling world, which have led to an industry-wide shift in women’s marketing. The company has not only proved to the industry that an entire market exists, but they’ve innovated and elevated cycling apparel for women in a way no other brand has (though they try), while building a strong and organic community of women who support each other, challenge themselves, and spread good vibes.

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On the Pod, We Discuss:

  • What led Jenn to create more apparel options for women in the sport and change the view around the sport in terms of what a classic cyclist looks like
  • How traditional clothing can prevent women from getting started in cycling
  • Why the equipment itself can lend itself to body image issues
  • Starting her company and what led her to develop her first kit
  • The history of women in cycling and why clothing is a microcosm of the industry at large
  • The intersection of cycling and body positivity, and how Machines for Freedom was one of the first brands to actively promote it
  • How inclusive marketing has affected the brand and why it’s so important
  • How Jenn landed on the name of the company and the historical context
  • The constructs put on women around femininity and sexuality and the kit Jenn developed to challenge them
  • Her experience running the company over the past years and the biggest hurdles she has faced as an entrepreneur
  • What you need to know if you’re interested in getting into cycling and how to find a community that’s a good fit
  • Her outlook on the future of the industry, body positivity and inclusive retail
  • And so much more

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Author Bridget

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