History of Nike Dunks

The Nike Dunk is currently one of the hottest shoes on the market. The versatility and simplicity of the Dunk has made it a must for those who are looking for a stylish casual sneaker. Continue reading to learn more about the history of the Nike Dunk.

Made For The Court
The Nike Dunk High was released in 1985. It started out as a high-top basketball sneaker. The Nike Dunk High is similar to other Nike designs of the era, such as the Air Force 1 and Air Jordan 1. The marketing behind the Dunk High is unique to Nike. Nike uses the slogan “Loyal to School” in its advertising. The Dunk was conceptually conceived as a shoe that could be worn by college basketball teams and their fans. Nike at the time had agreements with the University of Iowa, the University of Kentucky, the University of Michigan, Georgetown University, St. John’s University, the University of Nevada at Las Vegas and Syracuse University. These college powerhouses all choose Nike Dunk as their team shoe. Each school received a pair of Nike Dunks in their team’s colors.

Nike Dunk caused a lot of buzz when it was first launched. It is widely popular for its vibrant color scheme and association with some of the largest universities in the world. Dunk High’s initial run was strong but short-lived. Nike quickly surpassed the Dunk High in style and technology. Its mainstream relevance began to fade.

By the 1990s, the Nike Dunk High was commonly found in thrift stores, flea markets, and passed down as secondhand. Falling out of favor with mainstream consumers is usually the end of a product, but in the case of the Nike Dunk High, it allows them to appeal to a whole new consumer base.

8 Different Nike Dunks.

Embrace Skating
When the public stopped loving the Nike Dunk High, skaters fell in love with them. The rebellious nature of skaters, especially in the 1990s, prevented them from embracing popular or fashionable Nike sneakers. In the early 1990s, skaters could buy a pair of Nike Dunks for cheap. The shoe also provides the support and durability skaters are looking for. The fact that most consumers are no longer interested in Nike Dunks is a major draw for skateboarders.

As skating and skateboarding grow in popularity, Nike hopes to make its mark on the market. Nike struggled to fit into this culture at first. Nike has yet to understand how the culture has embraced the Dunk. But, as Nike usually does, when they figured it out, they largely solved the problem.

In 1998, Nike updated the Dunk High, making it less of a basketball shoe and more of a skate shoe. The tongue was changed to nylon, giving it a more skating-friendly silhouette. The style of the sneaker remained unchanged and was produced in original colorways as well as those reminiscent of the OGS. The return of the Dunk, coupled with some skate-driven improvements, could satisfy the needs of the skateboarding crowd that Nike covets.

The Birth Of Nike SB
In 1999, Nike launched the Dunk Low Pro B and Dunk Low CO.JP models. These styles are available on the West Coast and in Japan. Dunks were used as zone experiments. Dunk Low Pro B and Dunk Low CO.JP models feature premium materials, textures, colors and designs. As Dunks grew in popularity in the late 1990s, the internet began to play a major role in sneaker news and hype. Regionally exclusive Dunks are becoming a popular trend and hot topic on sneaker sites and forums. The internet connects sneakerheads across the globe, and the Dunk is a major focus of their discussions.

Sandy Bodecker was appointed General Manager of Nike SB in 2001. In 2002, Nike SB was officially established as Nike’s official subsidiary focusing on skateboarding. The birth of Nike SB also saw the release of the SB Dunk Low. The Low may end up becoming Nike SB’s most popular model.

Prior to joining Nike Skate, Boedek served as Nike’s vice president of special projects, where he helped strengthen Nike’s football division. Bodecker started talking to skate shop owners to make sure he had a deep understanding of the community. Nike began to get a better grasp of skate culture, and the growth of Nike SB reflected that.

Sadly, Sandy Bodecker passed away in 2018. Sandy Bodecker has done an incredible job at Nike, with Nike SB probably being his crowning achievement.

No Shortage Of Inspiration
The Nike SB is currently one of Nike’s most beloved segments. It remains a favorite of skateboarding and youth culture. Some of the most memorable and beloved Nike sneakers of the past two decades have come from Nike SB. Nike SB’s creativity and bold choices are what make this collection so special. Nike SB releases shoes inspired by beer, movies, animation, animals and food. There’s no shortage of inspiration in Nike’s beloved niche.

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