Design Talk means taking some time to meet the faces behind a brand. Today, we would like you to get to know the people of Finnish home fitness and wellbeing company FitWood: Matias Kukkonen, founder and CEO, and his business partner, Ossi Numminen.
“We founded FitWood because we were never satisfied with the equipment available — we wanted something sturdier and more beautiful,” the founders say, “so every FitWood product is carefully designed and assembled in Finland with quality, renewable materials like wood from the northern forests. Wanting to improve wellbeing in everyday life combined with a respect for nature, pure materials and good design are at the core of everything that we do.”
Kukkonen’s interest in fitness and wellbeing comes from years of competing as a national level sprinter. After he pivoted to entrepreneurship later in life, his busy work schedule forced him to begin training at home. That’s when he saw a need for improvement and began conceptualizing the brand as it is today. Meeting his current business partner Ossi Numminen provided the final push, and FitWood was started in the summer of 2015. Later, Kukkonen began designing products in collaboration with FitWood investor and Finnish NHL star Alexander Barkov, who plays for the Florida Panthers.
FitWood is grounded in the simple premise that exercise equipment can also function as seamlessly integrated home décor. Most of the home fitness tools on the market are designed with a focus on functionality and are not intended to be decorative. This is why, quite often, the exercise equipment finds its way into the closet or underneath the couch, and remains forgotten there. “If the equipment is in plain view, and ready to use all the time, it supports a more active lifestyle,” Kukkonen says. “We started to question why design thinking has not been applied to fitness equipment when it is part of everything else in our homes.”
FitWood’s solution? To combine bodyweight training with sustainable, Scandinavian design and natural materials — in other words, to create designer home fitness equipment. DECOVRY stocks a wide selection of FitWood’s simply ingenious products, from their understated, multipurpose wall bars through weights, rings, and rollers to equipment made especially for kids.