clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Dominique's shoe: The Reebok Pump

"If you want to fly first class, pump up and air out"

The Pump ad above was one Reebok's best advertisements. In the ad, Dominique Wilkins references the 1988 Dunk Contest , which was one of the most heated dunk contests in the history of the NBA.  While this shoe wasn't Dominique's signature shoe, and many other great athletes such as Dee Brown (winner of the 1991 Dunk Contest ) wore the shoe, Dominique's game was a big reason for The Pump's success.  Everyone knew Dominique, and fans wanted to play like him.  Dominique's challenging ad coupled with The Pump's innovative technology was business genius.

Reebok's Pumps were revolutionary; one of their best shoes ever to be released, no doubt.  They released in 1989 and the line still survives today.  The Pump's name comes from an actual pump on the tongue of the shoe.  This mechanism allows for unique player custom support and protection throughout the shoe.  Once this shoe hit the market, it didn't take long for pop culture to latch on and wear the shoe casually.

In the video below Esteban Serrano, a Fuse reporter, discusses the impact and history of the Reebok Pump with Paul Litchfield, one of the main designers of this shoe.

Even though Reebok isn't as popular as they used to be in the 90's, their Pumps have lived for 26 years and will continue to live as consumers demand this historic shoe.  The Pumps were not only king on the court, but in pop culture as well.