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Monday, June 18

The Goddess of Victory

The ABCs and running series:Today's topic "NIKE"
There is one word synonymous with running -> NIKE. But how did this phenomenon come about?
The birth of a cushioned lightweight shoe!
As a runner I know how important the fiber between me the road is.
The first waffle shoe was developed by Bill Bowerman.[A track coach] Together with help from his friend - business savvy, Phil Knight they co- founded the NIKE company.
(Phil was actually coached by Bowerman - running a 4:10 mile.)
The shoes were marketed to the public for soccer/football players first. But it wasn't long before other athletes said, "Hey I want a pair of those!"

"Soon Bill was pouring rubber into his wifes waffle iron, creating the modern running outsole. This was no accident. Nor was it luck. Bowerman was always looking for ways to give his runners an edge." - nikebiz
The first shoe "moon shoe" appeared on the market in the early 70s. They were worn at the 1972 Olympic Trials.
In 1973, Steve Prefontaine become the first major track athlete to wear Nikes.
BY 1978 NIKE shoes were mainstream for most athletes. And even though they now sell products other than shoes, the shoe recognition still continues.
Incredibly, the Nike Company was first established here in Eugene, Oregon - but pulled up stakes and left. (I spoke with a seasoned local runner who said the city was not supportive of the company???)
By 1979 Nike sold almost half the running shoes bought in the United States, and the company moved into a new world headquarters building in Beaverton, Oregon.
A big loss for Eugene...

The name NIKE is from Greek mythology. She was the goddess of victory. Her image on Greek pottery and statues portray her as a winged goddess. The wings supposedly symbolized the fleeting nature of victory...

Right image credit

A Headless Nike Statue