Adding to the smorgasbord of content for this year's celebration of Nike's self-anointed Air Max Day, we present an inside look at some little-known facts about the Swoosh's storied silhouette. Developed by Tinker Hatfield in 1987, the Air Max 1 shook up the footwear world thanks to its exposed Air-cushioned sole. Before the Air Max 1, in fact, was the Air Max Zero, which was unveiled just a few days ago and preceded the release of the Air Max 1 by a whole two years.

Now, 28 years since the release of the first Nike Air Max 1, the kick remains as popular as ever with countless iterations, Quickstrikes and coveted colorways for casual and die-hard fans alike. Check out our full list of obscure facts below and up your Air Max knowledge in time for your next sneaker pickup.

1. The Visible Air unit on the Air Max 1 was inspired by the "inside out" architecture of the George Pompidou Centre in Paris which was deigned by renowned architects Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers.

2. The 1987 TV Campaign to launch the Air Max 1 was the first ad to use a song performed by The Beatles ("Revolution").

3. The original Air Max was part of the wider "Air Pack" that featured the Air Safari, Air Revolution, Air Trainer and Air Sock.

4. There are actually 2 OG versions of what came to be known as the Air Max 1 – early prototype models dating from 1986 featured a larger Air bag and different midsole design. The Air bag was made smaller by 1987 due to production issues.

5. The OG Air Max 90 features the legendary "Infrared" colorway. However, this is a relatively new description of the color and wasn’t officially used by Nike until 2003.

6. The Air 180 marketing campaign featured work by the illustrator and Hunter S. Thompson collaborator Ralph Steadman amongst others as well as a TV ad campaign directed by David Cronenberg (director of The Fly, Crash, Naked Lunch et al).

7. Range Rover featured an Air Max 93 in a press ad to help promote the vehicle’s air suspension system.

8. Japanese retailer atmos was the first company to collaborate on an Air Max 1 in 2002.

9. Nike-Air technology was created by the late Marion Frank Rudy, a former aerospace engineer with NASA.

10. The development of the shoe came at a fraught time for the company. Tinker Hatfield literally had hate messages pinned to his door, discouraging him from designing the shoe.

What To Read Next

*If you submitted your e-mail address and placed an order, we may use your e-mail address to inform you regularly about similar products without prior explicit consent. You can object to the use of your e-mail address for this purpose at any time without incurring any costs other than the transmission costs according to the basic tariffs. Each newsletter contains an unsubscribe link. Alternatively, you can object to receiving the newsletter at any time by sending an e-mail to

Web Accessibility Statement

Titelmedia (Highsnobiety), is committed to facilitating and improving the accessibility and usability of its Website, Titelmedia strives to ensure that its Website services and content are accessible to persons with disabilities including users of screen reader technology. To accomplish this, Titelmedia has engaged UsableNet Inc, a leading web accessibility consultant to help test, remediate and maintain our Website in-line with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), which also bring the Website into conformance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.


Please be aware that our efforts to maintain accessibility and usability are ongoing. While we strive to make the Website as accessible as possible some issues can be encountered by different assistive technology as the range of assistive technology is wide and varied.

Contact Us

If, at any time, you have specific questions or concerns about the accessibility of any particular webpage on this Website, please contact us at, +49 (0)30 235 908 500. If you do encounter an accessibility issue, please be sure to specify the web page and nature of the issue in your email and/or phone call, and we will make all reasonable efforts to make that page or the information contained therein accessible for you.