Nyjah Huston is used to living in the moment as a professional skateboarder, but his latest business venture — a shoe collaboration with Nike — makes him a bit nostalgic.
“It was something that a kid can only dream of,” the athlete told PEOPLE exclusively of his partnership with Nike at the launch of the Nike SB at the Highlight Room in Hollywood on Monday night.
Working with the brand, Huston knew both he and his upcoming shoes were in good hands. “I knew I had the best people working with me, the best materials, the best designers,” he said.
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As for the qualities that were important to him when it came to designing the functionality of the shoe, Huston, 23, said he didn’t want the shoes to feel new — at least not while skating.
“I’ve always hated skating in new shoes just because you have to break them in and they feel all stiff at first,” he explained. “It kind of sucks. So I wanted the shoe to be able to break in fast and people to be able to feel comfortable with it, but then for it to last a long time.”
He continued, “That’s the important thing for kids out there, because they go through shoes so fast. They’re skating hours and hours every single day. So I want to give kids a shoe out there that they can actually skate for a long time and enjoy.”
While Huston designed these shoes to help skateboarders attain high performance, he’s quick to point out that these shoes aren’t exclusively for people who skate. “Not only skateboarders,” he said of who will benefit from his shoes, “but people that work out, people that just want to buy Nikes just to feel comfortable and chilling. Doesn’t matter. Guys, girls, just something that everyone can wear and enjoy wearing.”
While the shoes are chic and can be worn from the skate park to a dinner date, Huston says his own personal style is usually a little more “out of the box.”
“I guess anything that I think someone’s going to hate on, which is basically all the time. Honestly, I’m the type of person that I’m down to have my own style. I’m down to do whatever I want to do. Doesn’t matter what someone’s going to comment or whatever. I like to do my own thing,” he says.
Huston’s shoe collaboration with Nike is available at local skate shops nationwide and on Nike.com starting Thursday.