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Nike Free Shoes

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The Origins of the Free

Tobie Hatfield, brother of legendary sneaker designer, Tinker Hatfield, had been seeking the formula for a shoe that was less rigid than many of the running shoes of the ’90s. Nike first created models like the Nike Air Rift and Nike Air Presto in an attempt to give the runner more natural motion, but it wasn’t until a 2001 Stanford University track practice when Nike designers discovered training barefoot led to increased performance. This led to the study of the biomechanics around this phenomenon and ultimately to the birth of the Nike Free as we know it.