Karhu sneakers from Finland to the Nordics by Playground
Heritage of more than 100 years
Karhu has an incredible heritage and innovation history within the sneaker world and dates more than 100 years back to its birth in 1916 in Finland. That actually makes it one of the world’s first sneaker brands!
The Finnish bear
Karhu means bear in Finnish and must be associated with the bear’s superior strength and the symbol of a winner. Karhu sneakers have a great history. In fact, they have inspired some of the big players in the sneaker market like Adidas & Nike with new inventions and technology.
The original three stripes brand
The Karhu brand and sneakers were originally characterized by having three stripes on the side. In 1951, Karhu sold these recognizable three stripes to the then small German brand Adidas, that of course still use them today with great brand success. At a price equal to 1600 euros and 2 bottles of whiskey that must have been the bargain of the century! Since 1960, after the sale of the three stripes brand logo, Karhu have used the current “M” which is the symbol of mountains.
Nike Air Max technology
The well-known Air Max sneaker from Nike is characterized by a visible air cushion in the sole. This function was originally invented by Karhu. In its tradition of efficiency-driven innovation, Karhu develops the first patented “Air Cusion” mid- sole system for its running footwear in 1970.
Karhu Fullchrum Technology
Some years later in 1986, Karhu ones again push the sole-technology bar and introduce their Fullchrum Technology. It’s a product of Karhu R&D’s collaboration with the University of Jyväskylä that results in the development of the “Fulcrum” technology. The fulcrum is a cushioning system designed to Move Forward.
Karhu’s 20’s inventions
In 2016 Karhu seize their 100-year history and continue to innovate its footwear collection by developing Karhu Ortix Fit to provide runners with the next level of comfort.
A collaboration in 2018 with Fleet Feet, result in Karhu’s new FIT ID, that is to develop the first true fitting shoe created on foot scan measurements.