Adidas logo has 'hidden message' and people are only just noticing

The 3-Stripes running through the leaves
-Credit: (Image: AFP/Getty Images)


Adidas has been in the business of selling sportswear since the late 1940s. However, people have only just discovered a hidden message in its emblematic logo.

The sportswear manufacturer was launched by Adolf Dassler in August 1949 and it rapidly evolved into Europe's largest sportswear brand, while clinching the position of the worldwide runner-up after Nike.

Dassler embarked on this journey from his mothers home in Herzogenaurach, Germany, along with his brother Rudolf in 1924. They started off with the Gebruder Dassler Schuhfabrik (Dassler Brothers Shoe Factory).

Nevertheless, a falling out in 1949 led the brothers to go their separate ways and establish their individual ventures. As Adolf went ahead with Adidas, Rudolf introduced Puma that emerged as stiff competition to his brother's business.

According to the Adidas website: "At the time it was founded by Adolf Dassler in 1949, adidas only produced sports shoes. So, it should come as no surprise that the original logo for adidas featured just that. The very first logo showcased a track and field spiked shoe-with the signature 3-Stripes, of course-sitting between extended tails on the two d's in adidas. 'Sportschuhe' ('sports shoes' in German) is written beneath adidas, and the logo often appeared in a shade of blue that has become classic for the brand."

Adidas overhauled its emblem in 1972 as it expanded its range, introducing the iconic 3-Stripes intersecting with the leaves. Fast forward to 1991, and Adidas unveiled yet another emblem, which quickly became known as the 'Equipment logo'.

The company stated: "The new Equipment logo, released to the public in 1991, featured the 3-Stripes in a three-bar arrangement, with the words 'adidas EQUIPMENT' sitting below in adidas' sporting green colour.

"This logo likely feels familiar to you since the Three-Bars have since been adapted for use as part of various marks for the brand, including the Badge of Sport introduced in 1996. In this logo, the Three-Bars is combined with the adidas wordmark. You'll also now see the Three-Bars appear alone in the newly minted Performance logo."

According to Hatchwise, this logo carries a 'hidden message' for its customers - with the mountain shape representing "obstacles to overcome during your work to achieve your athletic goals". Tailor Brands interprets the 'secret' meaning as "representing the challenges athletes face and the goals to be achieved".

This hidden meaning recently caught the attention of people on Quora, where one explained: "Adidas originally started with the three stripes, which are visible in all of their logo. The most recent logo (read: the one with the slanted 3 stripes) is meant to mimic a mountain, symbolising the struggles and challenges in life."

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