Sneaker History


Sneaker History – What you should know


What does the word ‘Sneaker’ mean?

Do you know how the word ‘Sneaker’ was brought up?

In 1916, the shoes from the company Keds were the first ones with a soft rubber sole, so it was possible to ‘sneak around silently’ with them.

So Henry Nelson McKinney, the representative of an advertising company in New York, started to call these shoes ‘Sneakers’. Since then more and more people started to use this term defined for the shoe with the soft rubber sole.

When did Sneakers go international?

Sneakers went global in 1924 when the German founder of the shoe factory ‘Gebrüder Dassler Schuhfabrik’ Adolf Dassler created the first running shoe with spikes. Many athletes started to wear his shoes as an advantage for major sports competitions like the Olympic Games, for example.

Sneakers only for sports?

At this time, sneakers were only worn by athletes. People who haven’t played any sport back then couldn’t tell you what ‘adidas’ stood for.

But in the beginning of the 1950’s, things started to change for the sneaker culture. Kids and teenagers started to wear sneakers as dress codes for school, and more people started to wear sneakers for leisure activities and hoobies aswell.

Celebreties and sneakers?

Since the 1970’s, celebreties (especially in the hip hop industry) started doing collabs and signing deals with big shoe brands like Adidas or Nike to promote their sneakers. Oftentimes, the collab between a sneaker brand and an artist was limited to a certain number of shoes released.