Founded in 1964 as Blue Ribbon Sports by University of Oregon track coach Bill Bowerman and track athlete Philip Knight, the company that would become Nike, started off selling Japanese athletic shoes from the back of cars. By 1971, the Swoosh and the name Nike were born and registered and the company took off with its own products.
The history of Nike can be traced back through the company’s iconic advertising campaigns. Wieden+Kennedy coined the famous slogan “Just Do It” in 1988, which continues to be at the core of the brand. Numerous legendary athletes and celebrities have participated in Nike advertising campaigns over the years, from Michael Jordan – who also has an apparel line with the brand- to Tiger Woods, Bo Jackson, Ronaldo and Andre Agassi. Nike commercials have always been dynamic and inspirational, with a touch of humor in many of its campaigns.
Although its initial focus was running shoes, Nike now manufactures and distributes sports equipment for most major sports: tennis, track and field, ice hockey, football, soccer, lacrosse, basketball, golf, cycling and many, many more. Nike covers athletes from 0 years and up, with lines for babies, kids, young and adult athletes.
Nike continues to constantly reinvent its marketing strategies with integrated, global efforts as it continues to develop and introduce innovative products to maximize athletes’ performances in every sport.
From its origins in athletic footwear, Nike has diversified and expanded its portfolio of products and brands. Today, the company designs and manufactures items to cover athletes’ needs from head to toe as well as all the sporting equipment needed for most major sports and activities.
Nike apparel and products can be found at major retailers around the world. The company’s flagship stores, called Niketown, have a dynamic, fun and cool vibe about them and are located in urban and suburban areas around the globe.
Some of the brands under the Nike umbrella are Nike+, Air Jordan, Nike Dunk, Nike Golf, Nike Pro, Foamposite, Nike Skateboarding and subsidiaries Converse and Hurley International.
The Swoosh logo can be found on hoodies, t-shirts, shorts, athletic pants, hats, outerwear, underwear, shoes and also on sports equipment such as soccer balls, baseball bats, lacrosse sticks and any other piece of equipment needed to practice and excel at any sport.
Nike is a brand for the entire family. The company’s wide array of sports and athletic equipment hits the mark for everyone, regardless of athletic inclinations or abilities.
Nike shoes are durable and comfortable and come in a variety of styles to accommodate Mom and Dad’s fashionable tastes and kids’ growing needs and multiple sports.
Although Nike is one of the leaders in athletic equipment and its products are designed and developed to meet athletes’ needs, the brand’s apparel can also be used as everyday casual wear with comfortable and cute t-shirts, sweat shirts, hoodies and yoga pants.
The kids apparel developed by the brand will cover any changing sporting needs your kids will have over the years, while also outfitting them with comfy shoes, pants and shirts during their days at school.
Not too surprisingly, shoes are an integral component of Nike's women's line. You can find a wide array of sneakers that are designed for different sports, including running, basketball, softball, soccer, golf, skateboarding, snowboarding, tennis, lacrosse, volleyball, and more. The type of support and tread will vary by the requirements of the sport, so some shoes have cleat bottoms while others are designed to provide friction against a hard gym floor. Non-sports shoes are made to give the wearer support during day-to-day activities like walking and training, and they are designed to be comfortable for long-term wear.
Besides shoes, Nike also offers a broad selection of clothing for women. Athletic tees, jerseys, and tanks are designed to be moisture-wicking so that they will keep you dry during a tough workout. Running jackets and tops are also able to provide necessary warmth without being intrusive. Women's bottoms include leggings, shorts, pants, and skirts that are form-fitting and designed for athletic wear. Other items such as sports bras, hats, socks, and sunglasses round out the accessories you'll need for your workout. Since Nike has such a close relationship with major sports organizations like the NBA, NFL, and MLB, you'll also find plenty of everyday apparel that features team insignias in addition to the classic Nike Swoosh. Beyond just apparel, Nike also specializes in sports equipment and manufactures branded gear for practically every athletic endeavor.
Nike represents a rare type of company in that it has become known for doing several different things well. Nike sneakers are popular among people of all ages and are designed so that it's easy to find a pair to complement any lifestyle. While the brand's clothing certainly leans more strongly toward athletic individuals, Nike always toes the line between sporty and trendy--which is why many people spend as much time wearing their Nike apparel outside the gym as they do while working out. Technology is constantly evolving, and Nike always strives to adapt to these changes in addition to staying at the forefront of research and development on its own. For its sheer variety and its reputation as one of the leading American athletic brands, we give Nike 5 stars out of 5.