Founded way back in 1906 by baseball enthusiast Rihachi Mizuno, the Mizuno brand began as something of a passion project. Its owner took inspiration from a trip to the U.S and spent his entire life dedicated to providing the best sporting equipment possible, covering running, tennis, golf, skiing, track and field, boxing, football, and handball. By the 1970s, Mizuno had made its name, specifically for meticulous, scientific footwear research. The development of their Mizuno Wave Technology was a landmark for the brand.
The core values of Mizuno stretch comfortably across a wide range of sports. The advent of their Select Scientific Research Lab in 1938 enhanced their offering and cemented their place in the annals of world sports history. By the latter half of the 20th century, Mizuno was a prominent front runner. When the global giants began to diversify into fashion, Mizuno stayed true to its roots. Eventually though, the leap from athletic to aesthetic was inevitable, such was the look and feel of their pleasing- on-the-eye footwear.
Excellence in equipment was maintained, however, and to this day the brand remains at the top table in many sports, especially running and golf. Meanwhile, the lines between sport and street spent most of the 90s becoming increasingly blurred and as Mizuno had such a rich heritage in classic design, their footwear began to find favour with contemporary footwear enthusiasts.
Collaborations with the likes of Wood Wood and Hanon Shop have only enhanced their reputation as the understated outsider in the sneaker world and their 2021 releases will take their story even further. Japan is always a breeding ground for great design and reliable technology. In Mizuno, there exists a brand which can boast both characteristics, not to mention a 115-year track record.