Adidas’ iconic three-stripe trademark was originally designed to add extra stability and support to running shoes, and has been used by the German brand since the 1950s.
The adidas brand was registered in 1949 after a split of the Gebrüder Dassler Schuhfabrik, established by brothers Adolf and Rudolph Dassler in a small town in Bavaria, Germany, in 1924. As one of the world’s first performance sports brands, their running shoes were created, tested and developed in collaboration with top athletes from the very start, and in 1928 the company outfitted Lina Radke, who earned Germany’s first ever Olympic gold medal in athletics. Constant experimentation continued under the adidas name, with innovations like screw-in studs for football boots, indoor sports shoes with vulcanized-rubber soles and the world’s first running shoe to incorporate a computer. The distinctive three-stripe design was originally used for added stability and for reinforcement of the mid-foot.