The Reebok Pump is a one of a kind shoe that was popular in the 1990's. It revolutionized the basketball shoe by implementing an internal inflation mechanism that regulated a unique fitting cushion in two versions: the lower tongue; and also in the upper to provide locking around the ankle. In 1991, Dee Brown, former basketball player for the Boston Celtics, pumped up his shoes before performing his most crowd-pleasing dunk.
It was the first low-top basketball shoe ever designed and it gained attention of some of the best players from the NCAA and NBA, most notably Kareem Abdul Jabbar. But the legendary rap trio RUN DMC adapted the Superstar and helped it become an instant classic with their iconic three stripes and made them popular within the break dancing scene. In 1986 RUN DMC released a song titled "My Adidas" referring to the Superstars and iconized the shoe, forever. It made the transition from the court to the sidewalk and consequently, further into the public's consciousness.
Michael Jordan, the world's most legendary basketball player, gained an endorsement from Nike and thus the Air Jordan 1 was born. Jordan was actually fined $5000 per game he wore these due to the colors not matching the on court dress code. Nike gladly paid the fines for the Air Jordan 1 was rising in popularity due to the ban. Needless to say, this shoe paved the way to many other basketball shoes.
The first basketball shoe to ever use Nike's Air Technology, the Air Force One, showed the world that functionality and fashion can go hand in hand beautifully. The name is a reference to the airplane that carries the President of the United States. Six basketball players adopted this shoe and shot it into stardom: Moses Malone, Michael Cooper, Jamaal Wilkes, Bobby Jones, Michael Thompson, and Calvin Natt. The shoe quickly became a phenomenon within the professional ranks and quickly spread all over the country. Over 1700 styles of Air Force One's have been designed.
The Old Skool, or style 36, was the first Vans shoe to rock the side stripe (called "The Jazz" stripe when it first came out), which has become the unmistakeable hallmark of the Vans brand. It was designed by Steve Van Doren, the Godfather of Vans in Cypress, California. This iconic skate shoe was adopted by early US punk rock movement icons, such as Henry Rollins, and was made extremely popular within the punk and skate scenes. It is still widely popular amongst these scenes for it has become a legendary sneaker, from BMX to the stage, this shoe carries culture, style, and history.
First designed in 1917, the All Stars were designed to be an elite basketball shoe for the professional basketball league. In 1921, a basketball player names Chuck Taylor joined a team sponsored by the Converse Company called The Converse All Stars. Soon after this the shoe was worn by a variety of professional basketball players, athletes in the Olympics and during WWII American soldiers wore them while in training. However, over the years Chuck's made a transition from athletic sportswear to casual footwear and became a favorite for numerous groups and subcultures.