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Shave a commemorative Swoosh into the back of your head, bake your finest, sneaker-shaped pastries and ? if you?re susceptible to the thinly-veiled marketing ? buy a shipping container full of trainers, for today is nike air max 90 vt day.
And though this hallowed date shares its place on our calendars with no less than four other celebrations: Nougat Day, Spinach Day, Purple Day and make up your own holiday day (yes, seriously), one thing that can?t be understated amidst the nonsense pageantry is the enduring nature of this iconic shoe.
First launched in 1987, the original nike air max 90 hyperfuse was designed by the superbly titled tinker hatfield ? a former architecture student and a man with serious sneaker chops, having designed countless incarnations of the Air Jordan.
Commonly known as the Air Max 1 or ?87, the original sneaker was custom-built for running, and was the first trainer to feature a visible Air cushioning unit in its heel. Rather than responding to what the market wanted, Hatfield approached the shoe as a piece of engineering, taking design, he said recently, "into the utilitarian world of athletics, adding some panache and inspiration".
It worked ? nike free run release coincided with (and some say, launched) a jogging revolution, showcased by the company?s Michael Jordan and John McEnroe-starring TV ad. Record profits followed.
Though the air bubble (which was actually filled with sulfur hexafluoride, and these days nitrogen) was a radical addition in its day ? and spawned endless copycats in the years that followed ? many feared it would burst with extended wear. This largely proved false as, short of taking a knife to it, the cushioning routinely outlived the soles themselves. No wonder, given it was made of polyurethane ? the same material used to protect US Navy ships.
Despite its sprawling legacy, Hatfield?s nike air max canada colleagues weren?t a fan of the ?inside-out? design of the Air Max, inspired by the architecture of Paris?s Pompidou Centre.
?A lot of people were trying to get me fired for doing that at Nike,? hatfield Told The guardian. ?I'm kind of proud I'm named after someone who breaks the rules a little bit here and there. I'm a Tinker.?
Suffice to say the naysayers are notable in their absence, some 28 years on.
Its numerous versions have sold hundreds of millions pairs around the globe, and are coveted by everyone from athletes to trainer obsessives, and even criminals.
In 2007 it was reported that six out of 10 footprints left at crime scenes belong to a pair of Nikes, with the air max is the most popular mode of all. This either represents some unfortunate PR, or conclusively proves the shoes really are handy in a foot race.
But whether displayed proudly in council flats or in the mansions of hip-hop artists alike, perhaps the most extraordinary thing about the Air Max is that it nearly wasn?t made by Nike at all.
The boffins behind the cushioning technology actually presented it to a number of brands before meeting with Nike chairman, Phil Knight. Lucky for Nike, their swollen bank account and a generation of shoe fans, these other unnamed companies passed.
Looking back, they probably wish they?d Just Done It.
According to Nike's third quarter with the SEC, which covered the period ending Feb. 28, 2015, sales of running footwear declined. The company pinned the blame on a sales drop in North America stemming from "lower sales of entry level products."
A large fraction of those entry level products a sneakers from Nike's Roshe Run line, which often retail for On the other hand, Nike said its higher-priced, performance running styles, such as those using its , continued to sell briskly.
Going back to Nike's fiscal second quarter, Nike also appeared to be having problems selling cheaper running shoes due to improved styles from Under Armour , Adidas, Puma . At that time, Nike said in its SEC filing that sneakers using technologies such as the Nike Free, Max Air, Lunar, Zoom Air and Flyknit lines helped to drive a 21% sales increase in footwear, excluding the impact of currency. Nike did not break out the performance in its North America running shoe business at that time.
The weakness in what Nike calls its "core running" categories was discussed in its most recent earnings call in March. "Core footwear, within the running category, isn't performing as well as we would like, particularly in North America," admitted Nike brand President Trevor Edwards.

Later in the call he added, "We think there's opportunity for us to do better in that zone," and pointed to Nike's need to bring more innovation to get its offerings back up to snuff. Bringing new styles and technologies to market quickly could halt this rare marke-share loss in the running business for Nike.
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