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History of Heelys

November 16, 2016 3 min read

The Nineties was a time of possibilities. New trends were setting in and people were experimenting to bring novelty into the ideas. In short, it was the best time to do business. People started bending the rules on long-held beliefs as the internet began creeping slowly into public life at large. Things were changing and that too at speedy pace. On the verge of the year 1999, a guy by the name of, Roger Adams pushed the boundaries further than they’d ever been pushed before when he submitted the patent for a revolutionary product by the name of Heelys. This brand was poised to inflict a huge impact on current and future generations especially those individuals in the United States and Canada.

Adams designed the shoes during his self-titled mid-life crisis. One afternoon while staring off into space, Adams dreamt of floating down hallways with just a little change in balance. He decided to put a pair of wheels in his old Nike shoes. With such a humble beginning, he gave birth to the Heelys brand. Slowly he began to create different designs to make his dream a reality. In the end, he created history with a historic brand he developed – Heelys. Adam’s design was simple. All he did was that he merely placed a removable wheel into the heel of a casual skateboarding shoe, transforming this padded foot protection into one the world’s smallest form of transportation that is highly convenient for students and other persons who just want to swing by some places by Heeling their way.

Heelys entered the market the following year that Adams came up with the idea and took the new millennium by storm. Heelys took off almost immediately, selling out within hours at the first shops that sold them and even online too. Adams sold his design at trade shows around the country, and soon stores everywhere began picking up this new hot product to make a profit from each pair that they sold. Within the first year, Heelys sold over one million pairs of shoes and the sales were increasing rapidly as time went by. At the time when Heelys just arrived on the market they were priced at around $50 to $100 USD and trust me even if the price was more, they would still be sold, millions of them too. This is how powerful these shoes were on the market. The popularity of Heelys also began to heighten when celebrities started wearing them. Rapper and singer Usher wore them sometimes during his stage performances and famous basketball player, Shaquille O’Neal order over six pair Heelys for his personal collection.

Since that first year, sales of Heelys have continued to grow and cement their place in the elementary and middle school hallways around the nation. As the company grew in popularity, they have branched out into different designs and styles, furthering their market share and captivating many individuals with the classy designs and colors that they came in. A huge factor that caught many person attention was the removable wheel in the heel of the shoes. That allowed individuals to heel and skate their way along any path while wearing the shoes or walk as if they are wearing a normal shoe, by just removing the wheel from the heel. Roger believed in his dreams about the Heely shoe, so he went for the gamble. On his way to becoming a top brand owner he faced many obstacles such as the bad publicity with many schools prohibiting Heelys to be used. Nevertheless, with those things happening, Heelys managed to sell over 1.25 million pairs of shoes in just a year and were highly popular in areas such as China, South Korea, and the United States.