The Five: 5 New Trends for Back to School

The Five: 5 New Trends for Back to School

The summer season is still in full swing, but the countdown to Back to School has started. All too soon, lace-up athletics and trusty backpacks will replace flip-flops and Wayfarers. When it came to uncovering the top footwear trends for the Back to School season, our Buyers noticed the rising popularity of shoes with advanced comfort features.

Makes sense. Students spend seven or more hours a day, five days a week, on campus. They’re hustling to and from classes as well as sports and extracurricular activities. That’s a long time on your feet…made even longer in uncomfortable shoes.

To kick off the Back to School season, we’ve put together a list of our 5 favorite new trends for Back to School Athletics. New styles, new colors, new tech features…these are the looks that are topping the style pyramid.

Lighter, More Streamlined Appearance


Lighter on your feet with a more minimalist design, athletics have really lightened up for Back to School. Cush styles (711 & 315) from New Balance, Next Generation from Skechers and Nike’s Flex Experience are lightweight and offer flexibility and advanced technology features, plus color options that are ideal for a younger age group.

Tech Loaded Runners


Footwear companies thrive on new technology; this is especially true for athletic brands. Shoe manufacturers employ actual engineers who work to develop technology that bounces better, achieves more air and flexibility, and give you, the consumer, a more comfortable experience. If athletics were this advanced when I was a kid, I would have been more excited about P.E. Well, probably not, but whatever.

Among the crowd of tech savvy athletics we’ve seen for Back to School 2014, Saucony’s Cohesion 7, Chase & the Excite 2 by ASICS, Powerblaze by Adidas and Nike’s Flex Supreme stand out as bringing new innovations to the marketplace.

Canvas Equations

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Lightweight canvas sneakers are as Back to School as snack packs. They can be worn with almost anything and make feet feel great from first to final bell. The canvas rise to domination stems from shoe designers offering more style options, including color prints, patterns and texturized fabric. The Atwood by Vans, Sparkle Wash by Converse and Keds’ Champion are all excellent examples of the classic canvas and its timeless appeal.

Comfort All Day, Every Day


Whether you’re working out or working your way to Chemistry, your feet and legs deserve some downtime. Fortunately, this school year brings with it a bevy of athletic and casual shoes that were designed to give greater comfort, with every step. Several GOwalk by Skechers styles now feature GOga mat insoles—which feels like a yoga mat and reminds me of the perfect napping spot. The 711 & 315 styles from New Balance feature Cush technology insoles—and remind me of the perfect pillow.

Kids’ Bold Colors & Characters


Little kids shoes are always so much fun. If I could find a pair of owl shoes in my size, I would be one happy lady. How right George Bernard Shaw was when he said, “Youth is wasted on the young”. Regardless, the kiddies have some pretty awesome options when it comes to cool Back to School shoes. Characters like Spider Man, the Transformers and Batman will show your child the way to truth and justice, while Skechers Light-Up styles and extreme color collections from Vans showoff her/his unique style.

The Back to School season has shown us several new styles from the most popular brands, plus introduced us to a few surefire favorites. And while it might be a fruitless task to get them excited about going back to class, these shoes might give kids a few reasons to get into the spirit.


Cover Image courtesy of Shutterstock. Content images property of Rack Room Shoes. 


Known as an innovator in the shoe industry for more than 80 years, Rack Room Shoes has earned the respect of its customers, vendors, landlords and other retailers. By offering the best selection, brands, service, convenience and value, Rack Room Shoes remains poised for great achievements in the years to come. Great shoes for men, women and children in comfort, dress, casual, and athletic categories make Rack Room Shoes the family footwear retailer of choice. The company offers a wide selection of nationally recognized brands known for their quality. Rack Room Shoes also offers an assortment of exclusive private brands commissioned from the best manufacturers in the business. These private brands offer the customer great styles and outstanding values, which translates into satisfied, loyal, repeat customers. The foundation for Rack Room Shoes was established in 1920 in Salisbury, North Carolina by Phil Levinson, and later passed on to his son-in-law, Mort Lerner. The period from 1920 until 1984 was one of modest growth. However, in 1984, the 22-store company was purchased by The Deichmann Group, a Germany- based shoe retailer, beginning a period of accelerated growth and infrastructure modernization. By 1990, Rack Room Shoes was operating 100 stores and just 4 years later the 200th store opened. In 1995, the company relocated its United States headquarters to a 72,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility in Charlotte, North Carolina. Over the next ten years the Rack Room Shoes chain doubled in size, with locations in 24 states from New Jersey to the tip of Florida to the California borders.


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