We have to go back to 1830 to find the ancestor of sneakers.
That year, a British manufacturer designed a shoe made of canvas, with, for the first time, a sole made of rubber.
This shoe wasn’t designed for sports, but for walking on the beach, because the watertight sole kept people’s feet dry.
How did the sneaker become a star shoe?
The suppleness and lightness of this type of shoe quickly attracted sportspeople. Models were adapted for athletics then tennis. In some countries, the shoe took on the name of the sport: Tennis shoes.
In 1917, the American company Converse designed the All Star for basketball players.
And that’s how basketball sneakers started!
In the 1980s, Nike created the first basketball sneaker with an air cushion, the Air Jordan 1, named after Michael Jordan. It was a hit!
Not just with players: from rappers to actors, celebrities started wearing basketball sneakers.
The fashion was launched. Sneakers could be worn everywhere.
The designers of luxury brands brought out their own models.
Sneakers became a cultural phenomenon. Some iconic models are even displayed in museums.