Adidas Samba

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Adidas Samba
InventorAdolf Dassler
Custom "Bad Gones" Adidas Samba worn by Lyon coach Remi Garde

Adidas Samba is an athletic shoe manufactured by German multinational Adidas. It was designed by Adidas Founder Adolf Dassler in 1949.[1] It is among Adidas' most popular shoes, being the second highest selling Adidas design ever with over 35 million pairs sold worldwide, behind the Stan Smith model.[2] It has been produced in a variety of color schemes.


The Samba was first produced in 1949 to enable football players to train on icy, hard ground (hence the suction design on the gumsole). Its original design featured the classic three stripes, as well as the gold trefoil on the foldable tongue. As years progressed, the Samba evolved into the Samba Millennium (which was made without the extended tongue) and the Samba '85.[3] Classic models of the shoe are still in production, under the name Classic M. The original model is sometimes used for training, street play, and futsal.[4][5][6]

The name 'Samba' originated from the timing of the shoes release, which coincided with the approaching 1950s soccer World Cup in Brazil. Given Brazil's strong association with samba music and carnival culture, Adidas launch the show in conjunction with the tournament. Hence, before the World Cup, the decision to name the sneaker 'Samba' was made.[7]

Model designs[edit]

The "Three Stripes" detail on Adidas sneakers, including the Samba, was not part of the original prototype. Over time, the design was updated to include the three stripes, which is consistent within all Samba models.[8]

Adidas Samba OG In White

Samba OG[edit]

Blue Suede Samba OG

The Samba OG is considered the classic and most prevalent Samba Silhouette available. It typically is constructed with a mix of suede and leather, complemented by a contrasting gum sole and the 'Three-Stripe' branding.[9] The "SAMBA" branding positioned near the three stripes, using a gold-colored embossed font highlights the model.

Samba ADV[edit]

During the 1990s, skateboarders started to embrace the Samba leading to its popularity in skateparks and indoor youth soccer clubs.[9] With this Adidas released the Samba ADV in 2017, a model specifically designed to meet the durability needs of skateboards while retaining the classic Samba aesthetic. The Samba ADV has a leather and suede upper panel, molded heel clip, support provided by a sockliner, tread, internal mesh bootie, and a gum capsule.[10]

Samba Classic[edit]

The Samba Classic shares similarities with the OG model but offers additional features that set it apart.[11] Specifically designed for indoor soccer, it has an extended tongue and a lightweight synthetic construction with EVA-injected soles. Additionally, the 'SAMBA' script branding on the side and tongue of the shoe are a larger font.[9]

Samba Vegan[edit]

The Samba Vegan is crafted using synthetic faux leather, entirely eliminating the use of animal products. Typically, these versions also incorporate more sustainable fabrics.[9][11]


While the upper panel of the sneaker resembles the Samba OG, it incorporates a distinctive feature in the midsole for biking. The underpart is designed to accommodate two-bolt pedal cleats.[9][12]

Samba Recon LT[edit]

The Reason LT is considered the most exclusive Samba silhouette, launched to coincide with the 2018 FIFA Russian World Cup. It released in two color ways- one with a black upper and gum sole and the other with a white upper and gum sole. This iteration also has a fold over tongue design.[9][13]

Samba Super[edit]

Adidas Samba Super in Black

The Samba Super was designed for more urban wear rather than athletic use. This model has a bulkier construction, a narrower foam sole at the back, and an extended outsole at the front.[9]

Samba Rose[edit]

The Samba rose was introduced in 2018 as a women's-sized model. Featuring the same upper as the Samba OG, Adidas added a textured platform midsole.[9]

Samba RM[edit]

The Samba RM was aimed to be an updated Samba iteration. The RM model was introduced with the Adidas BOOST soles, additional lateral branding displaying 'S4M3A' and a slightly raised midsole.[9][14]

Pop culture[edit]

The Samba has been featured in various television shows and movies, with the most notable first appearance dating back to the 1980s film Beverly Hills Cop, where Eddie Murphy's character, Axel Foley, wore the sneakers throughout the action movie. Kelso in That 70s Show, portrayed by Ashton Kutcher, also wore Sambas.[15] In the 1996 movie Trainspotting the main character Mark Renton, played by Ewan McGregor sports the Samba Super in burgundy.[16] Characters in Entourage, Remember The Titans, and You (TV series), highlight the shoe in popular culture.[17]

The UK prime minister Rishi Sunak apologised in 2024 for wearing Samba trainers after some social media users were reported as saying they would sell their shoes because "Sunak had ruined the look for everyone".[18] Days later, the Sunday Times carried a Nick Newman cartoon of a shoe salesman with a speech bubble saying: "Thanks to Rishi Sunak nobody nicks Adidas Samba trainers any more."[19]


Collaboration Partner Release date
Fiorucci February 15, 2019[20]
Pleasures April 27, 2019[21]
Oyster Holdings May 31, 2019[22]
Jonah Hill November 14, 2020[23]
Wales Bonner November 20, 2020[24]
Maite March 16, 2021[25]
Ajax x Bob Marley August 1, 2021[26]
Jason Dill April 9, 2022[27]
Gucci June 7, 2022[28]
IRAK October 12, 2022[29]
Atmos x Face November 19, 2022[30]
Plug Palace February 3, 2023[31]
Disney April 27, 2023[32]
"Humanrace" by Pharrell Williams November 3, 2023[33]
Sporty & Rich November 10, 2023[34]
Sneaker Politics, "Consortium Cup" November 15, 2023
Sean Wotherspoon November 15, 2023[35]
Extra Butter November 22, 2023[36]
BSTN, "Consortium Cup" November 22, 2024[37]
Kith x Clarks December 25, 2023[38]
Fucking Awesome January 17, 2024[39]
Kader Sylla February 10, 2024[40]
Dover Street Market March 30, 2024[41]


  1. ^ "Brief History Of The adidas Samba". 2022-11-25. Retrieved 2024-03-19.
  2. ^ "Ultimate Guide to the adidas Samba | love vintage adidas". Retrieved March 20, 2024.
  3. ^ "Adidas Samba Shoes - Evolution of Adidas Classic Samba Shoes". GQ India. 2018-06-19. Retrieved 2023-09-20.
  4. ^ "Triple S Kicks Latest Posts / Blog Profile". Archived from the original on 2011-09-30. Retrieved 2009-08-31.
  5. ^ "The latest about adidas products and where you can buy it online // BlogCatalog". Archived from the original on 2010-09-06. Retrieved 2009-08-31.
  6. ^ "Adidas Originals Samba OT-Tech | Available Now". Retrieved March 20, 2024.
  7. ^ Laura (2023-07-17). "The ultimate adidas Samba FAQ". Sneakerjagers. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  8. ^ "What is the history of Adidas' oldest model "Samba" and what are its four characteristics? | Men's Fashion Media OTOKOMAE". Retrieved March 20, 2024.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Buyers Guide: Breaking Down the adidas Samba Variations". Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  10. ^ "adidas Skateboarding Introduces the Samba ADV". Hypebeast. 2016-12-15. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  11. ^ a b Dunne, Riley Jones, Matt Welty, Zac Dubasik, Brendan. "The 10 Best Adidas Sambas Available Now". Complex. Retrieved 2024-03-19.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  12. ^ "12 Alternatives For The Adidas Samba". sabukaru. July 13, 2022. Retrieved March 20, 2024.
  13. ^ "The adidas Samba Recon LT In Core Black And Crystal White". Retrieved March 20, 2024.
  14. ^ "adidas Samba RM BOOST". Hypebeast. Retrieved 2024-03-19.
  15. ^ "The Most Iconic Trainers In Movie History". Esquire. 2019-04-24. Retrieved 2024-03-18.
  16. ^ "The It-Girls' Current Favorite Sneakers Have History". Vogue. 2023-05-16. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  17. ^ "The Adidas Samba Has Quietly Become the Sneaker of Hollywood's Elite". Under The Laces. 2023-07-17. Retrieved 2024-03-19.
  18. ^ Adu, Aletha; corresponent, Aletha Adu Political (2024-04-10). "'I'm a longtime devotee': Rishi Sunak apologises for wearing Adidas Samba trainers". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2024-04-14.
  19. ^ Liddle, Rod (2024-04-14). "Slugging it out for a hard-fought title: Stupidest MP". ISSN 0140-0460. Retrieved 2024-04-14.
  20. ^ "Adidas WMNS Fiorucci SAMBAROSE". Retrieved March 20, 2024.
  21. ^ "adidas Consortium Samba x PLEASURES". PACKER SHOES. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  22. ^ "adidas Originals x Oyster Holdings Samba OG Shoes". Hypebeast. Retrieved 2024-03-19.
  23. ^ Jones, Riley. "Jonah Hill's Samba Collabs Are Releasing Soon". Complex. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  24. ^ Marielle (2024-01-15). "Wales Bonner and adidas will release new Samba colorways in 2024". Sneakerjagers. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  25. ^ "Maite X Adidas Samba ADV". Retrieved March 20, 2024.
  26. ^ Park, Joey (2021-07-31). "Ajax x adidas Samba OG "Three Little Birds" Release Date". Nice Kicks. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  27. ^ "Jason Dill X Adidas Samba". Retrieved March 20, 2024.
  28. ^ "Everything We Know About adidas x Gucci So Far". Highsnobiety. 2022-03-23. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  29. ^ Lopez, Raymond (2022-10-19). "IRAK x adidas Samba GX4041". Nice Kicks. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  30. ^ Lopez, Raymond (2022-11-18). "FACE x atmos x adidas Originals Samba". Nice Kicks. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  31. ^ "Palace x adidas Puig Samba Release Date | SNKRDUNK Magazine". SNKRDUNK Magazine | sneaker news and release information find your favorite Jordan, Nike adidas and more. 2023-01-31. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  32. ^ "Adidas Debuts Mickey and Minnie Mouse Sambas for Disney's 100th Anniversary". Hypebae. 2023-04-17. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  33. ^ "Pharrell's adidas Humanrace Samba Returns in Two Colorways". Hypebeast. 2023-10-30. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  34. ^ Falcon, Cheyenne (2023-05-01). "Sporty & Rich x adidas Samba". Nice Kicks. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  35. ^ Servantes, Ian (2023-11-10). "Sean Wotherspoon Crafts the Adidas Gazelle Indoor With a Hemp Knit Upper". Footwear News. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  36. ^ Hernandez, Jovani (2023-11-21). "Extra Butter's Movie-Inspired adidas Samba Releases On November 22nd". Sneaker News. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  37. ^ "BSTN X Adidas Samba Consortium Cup". Retrieved March 20, 2024.
  38. ^ Ebanks, Jared (2023-12-02). "Ronnie Fieg's 8th Street Samba With Clarks Releasing On Christmas Day". Sneaker News. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  39. ^ "Fucking Awesome X Adidas Samba". Retrieved March 20, 2024.
  40. ^ Briguglio, Mario (2024-02-09). "Kader Sylla x adidas Samba ADV Releases February 2024". Sneaker Bar Detroit. Retrieved 2024-03-08.
  41. ^ "Dover Street Market X Adidas Samba". Retrieved March 20, 2024.

External links[edit]

Media related to Adidas Samba at Wikimedia Commons