Since the middle of the nineteenth century, women have been encouraged to participate in certain recreational sports, such as tennis, but historically, professional athleticism for women was frowned upon as “unfeminine.”
Tinker Hatfield / Design Sketch for Air Jordan III, 1987 / Nike Archives


Since the vulcanization of rubber in 1839, cutting-edge innovation and technological advancement have driven sneaker design.


In the mid-twentieth century, surfers on the West Coast of the United States took to the relatively new sport of skateboarding when the waves were flat.


Basketball, one of the most important sports in sneaker culture, was invented in 1891 in Springfield, Massachusetts, the very same town where Charles Goodyear had developed vulcanized rubber fifty years earlier.