Saucony’s rise to fame in the world running community began way back in 1898 in Kutztown, Pennsylvania. The brand is named for—and its logo is derived from—nearby Saucony Creek, but the company moved its headquarters to Lexington, Massachusetts, after athletic footwear maker Hyde Athletic bought it.
Saucony is one of the original running shoe makers, but it first gained wide appeal with runners in the ’80s and ’90s with innovative shoes like the Jazz, DXN, Shadow, and Grid. The Jazz garnered a following for its lightweight design, and it introduced a popular new technology, the MaxiTrac lugged outsole. In 1983, Saucony collaborated with NYC Marathon winner Rod Dixon to create the DXN, a high performance option that was based on the Jazz, but offered a lighter mesh upper and a bit more cushioning.
Later that decade, Saucony released the Shadow, which introduced EVA foam into the sole and TPU heel cups—technology that wouldn’t catch on across the category for years. Saucony continued to innovate in the ’90s. It released the Grid, which featured the company’s first curved last and the new namesake Grid midsole that offered more support and cushioning than previous models. You can still purchase modern versions of these classic shoes through the brand’s Orignals line.