History of New Balance

New Balance, an American multinational corporation, was founded in 1906 by William J. Riley as the 'New Balance Arch Support Company.' Initially, the company focused on producing arch supports and other accessories designed to improve shoe fit. Riley’s first product was a flexible arch support that was designed to provide greater balance and comfort in shoes, which he claimed was inspired by observing how chickens maintain perfect balance on three claws. This product found a niche market, particularly among workers who had to stand for long periods.

The company remained relatively small and specialized until the 1960s when it shifted its focus towards producing running shoes. Under the leadership of new owner Paul Kidd and his daughter Eleanor, New Balance released the 'Trackster' in 1961, which was the first running shoe available in varying widths. This innovation garnered the brand significant attention, especially in the athletic community. Over the following decades, New Balance expanded its product line to include a wide range of athletic and casual footwear, growing into one of the most recognized athletic brands worldwide. Today, New Balance is known for its commitment to quality, comfort, and performance, as well as its continued manufacturing presence in the United States and the United Kingdom.