Science at the service of feet
Our founder Dr William Mathias Scholl wanted to understand the structure and biomechanics of feet in relation to the body – and his passion and values still live with us today.
The story starts in Chicago in 1899, where at the age of 17 William moved to work in a small shoe shop – specialising in comfortable footwear. He was so intrigued by the number of people he met who had painful foot conditions that he enrolled in medical school to learn about the human body. And, most importantly, the anatomy and physiology of feet.
Shortly after qualifying as a doctor in 1904, at 22 years of age, he patented his first invention: the Foot-Eazer. It was a revolutionary product at the time – an insert placed in shoes to reinforce and support the foot arch. In 1907 he founded Scholl Manufacturing Co. Inc.
Putting science at the heart of inventing and developing products, in 1912 William Scholl founded the Illinois College of Chiropody and Orthopaedics – soon to become the most important teaching institution in its field in the United States of America. He offered free foot examinations and created an Annual National Foot Comfort Week too.
In the 20's he created the first line of footwear designed to care for the anatomy of the foot. A decade later Dr Scholl brought out compression hosiery for the relief of swollen ankles and varicose veins. And in the 40's Dr Scholl insoles were created and marketed, soon to become one of the company's bestsellers.
In the 60s we boomed. Scholl's Pescura sandals were developed with an anatomically crafted beechwood footbed, helping to tone the legs at every step. They rapidly became an international success, with celebrities like models Twiggy and Jean Shrimpton wearing them – turning them into a renowned style and comfort icon.
William Scholl passed away in 1968, aged 86. His lifelong quest: "How to improve people's comfort, health and well-being by caring for their feet?" was left to his company. And we’re still dedicated to caring for the world’s feet.
We celebrated Scholl's centenary with a new brand identity, a new generation of foot care products and a line of footwear that ensures maximum comfort whilst still being fashionable and innovative.
We revealed our new line of shoes designed by major Italian designers and sold in high-street shoe shops. With the right balance of style, comfort and technology, they have everything that embodies Scholl.
Scholl's history continues with its founder's same passion and philosophy – to improve the health, comfort and well-being of people by caring for their feet.