Image: Shutterstock

It's that time again, folks.

As the 2016 Olympics take to the streets (or the part of Rio designated for the festivities) of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, here in the United States of 'Merica we're ready to start cheering on the gymnasts, tennis stars, basketball players, swimmers, track goddesses, and even the dang rowing team because the Olympics are back, and NFL Training Camp coverage is hella boring.

While these particular Olympic Games have already been marred with a slew of L's, the show (and the shoes) must go on.  From iconic tennis star Steffi Graf in '88 to her heir apparent Serena Williams, certain sneaks have been ingrained in our memories as the US grabbed W after W. That's wins, y'all.

So, before you kick back for tonight's opening ceremonies, we thought it would be nice to relive some of our favorite lady athlete sneaker moments from Olympics past. And we’ll even squeeze in some sport, too.


Image: Complex

5. Steffi Graf in adidas Grand Slam

Event: Women's Tennis

Olympics: Seoul 1988

OK, so maybe Steffi Graff was playing for Germany, BUT Americans were still rooting for the tennis icon in the Seoul 1988 games. I know this because my mother was one of them. Besides being one of adidas' marquee sneaks, the German won all four Grand Slam titles and the Olympic medal in these shoes.  The Grand Slam introduced new technology to the sport world with colored pegs for customized cushioning and an injection molded sole, which was revolutionary at the time. 
 

Image: DailyMail

4. "Fab 5" in adidas adiZero Primeknit

Event: Women's Gymnastics

Olympics: London 2012

Before adidas starting rolling out dope drops like an episode of The Wire, they were setting the three stripe stage in 2012 for London's Olympic fete. Athletes across all sports (including track star Jessica Ennis) introduced us all to adidas' new Primeknit technology with the adidas adiZero PK.  As the brand's first one-piece upper performance runner, the adiZero featured the latest in adidas' seamless engineering technology and set the stage for this Uncaged Ultra Boost.

 

Image: Getty

3. Serena Williams in Nike Air Max Mirabella 3

Event: Women's Tennis

Olympics: London 2012

Before the C-Walk seen around the world (remember that GIF up top?) Serena Williams competed her way to Gold in the Nike Air Max Mirabella 3.  A signature of Serena's - it was also included in her BHM Collection - before Nike Court upped the tennis ante, the Air Max Mirabella 3 featured max impact protection and cushioning.  It was also super breathable with a mesh upper and phylon midsole.

Image: Google

2. Allyson Felix in Nike LunarSpider R3

Event: Women's Track & Field

Olympics: London 2012

Though adidas seemed to be a significant Olympics sponsor in the 2012 London games, Nike often took center stage with it's marquee athletes AND gave us a few items to drool over in the process. While Allyson Felix's running spikes definitely aren't in the closets of most sneaker-loving ladies, the eye-catching appeal of the Nike LunarSpider R3 was a runaway hit with sneaker enthusiasts who couldn't miss the streak of volt. Responsive and protective, the LunarSpider R3 boasted mesh and a new material that Nike introduced in 2012 - the Flyknit

In addition to the LunarSpider, Nike ensured that it's new technology was in full view of the world with that volt taking the podium on athletes decked out in Nike's first version of the Flyknit Racer.

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1. Sheryl Swoopes in Nike Air Swoopes

Event: Women's Basketball

Olympics: Atlanta 1996

After making history as the first woman to ever have a signature shoe, Sheryl Swoopes made us proud in the Nike Air Swoopes during the '96 Atlanta Games and helped the Team USA steamroll to a gold medal.  The sneakers became such a favorite that even men hopped on the Swoopes bandwagon.  After a re-release in 2012, it'd be nice to see this Olympic colorway make a triumphant return. 

Do you have a favorite Olympic sneaker? Any we might have missed? Let us know in the comments below.  In the meantime, check out an all encompassing rundown courtesy of our friends at YardBarker in the video below. Those Jordan 7's are still one of my absolute favorites and they will make an appearance as we kick off Rio 2016.


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