NMD Japanese Writing (Translated and Explained)

If you’re a Sneakerhead with a shoe obsession, you probably snapped up the NMD Adidas the moment they were released. You may have also noticed the writing on the bottom midsole.

What does the NMD Japanese writing on Adidas mean?

The NMD Japanese writing on Adidas shoes is marketing copy. Translated into English, the writing lists bones commonly found in the foot. The Japanese writing also promotes the advanced cushion technology of the Adidas sneaker. Part of the writing on the Adidas NMD shoe is blocked by the shoe.

In this article, I’ll break down the exact translation of the NMD Japanese writing.

Japanese Writing on NMD Adidas (Detailed Translation)

The Japanese writing on NMD Adidas sneakers is difficult to decipher because some of the writing is blocked by part of the shoe.

However, using Google translate, we can get a good sense of the meaning.

Here is the Japanese writing that we read on the shoe:

足根骨、中足骨、踵骨、船状骨、第一から第_(Missing/blocked section of text)_そして甲部、



The Google translation into English is:

Tarsal bone, metatarsal bone, calcaneus, boat-like bone, first to first _ (Missing / blocked section of text) _ and instep,

Furthermore, the soles of the feet. The feet are such an elaborate biomachine, but the shoes are cushioned.

It is a ridiculous story that all you need is a system.

Of course, Google translate is not always 100% right or accurate.

Therefore, I sent the Japanese text and Google translation to a native Japanese speaker. After reading the Adidas Japanese writing, my translator sent back a better version.

My translator said that the black NMD Japanese writing is better translated to mean:

Tarsal bone, metatarsal, calcaneus, navicular, from the first to ___ (Missing/blocked section of text) ___ instep and soles of the feet. Feet are such a delicate biomachine that to suggest shoes are good enough with only a cushion system is ridiculous.

Ok, that makes a bit more sense.

Essentially, the Japanese writing on Adidas is part biology lesson about the foot and part criticism of the sufficiency of all other shoes.

Dang, Addidas, way to burn your competition.

What Does the Missing Japanese NMD Writing Say?

We can’t be sure what the blocked or missing Japanese writing says or means.

However, there are clues in the context of the other writing.

The writing starts with a discussion of bones in the foot. Then, it goes on to talk about the cushioning system in Adidas shoes.

My best guess is that the missing section of the text talks more about the bones of the foot.

For example, “from the first to the last, from the top to the bottom.” Or perhaps, “from the first to the last, the calcaneus to the phalanges”.

These are just guesses, but I think they make sense in the context of the other writing.

At the end of the day, we may never know what that final section of Japanese NMD writing says.

But it’s still fun to speculate.

Black vs. White Adidas NMD: Is There A Difference In the Writing?

There is no difference in the Japanese writing on black or white versions of the Adidas NMD shoes.

The only difference is the color of the shoe.

However, the meaning of the writing is the same regardless of the color.

NMD with Pink Japanese Writing

The pink writing on NMD Adidas shoes is a blend of Japanese and Mandarin Chinese characters that translates to “Human Race.”

This is a meaningful phrase that has been co-opted by the sneaker culture.

It’s a phrase that is often used to describe the diversity of humankind.

In this context, the phrase “human race” probably refers to the Sneakerhead community – a group of people who are passionate about sneakers.

The use of Japanese and Mandarin Chinese characters in the pink writing may be a nod to the global nature of the Sneakerhead community.

What Do the NMD Japan’s Say?

The writing on NMD shoes means different things on different models.

All of the writing does mean something, though. It’s not just chicken scratch writing.

Some of the meanings include:

  • Three stripes
  • Empower
  • Inspire

You can probably imagine that the words “empower” and “inspire” are meant to motivate and encourage people.

The word “three stripes” is a reference to the Adidas logo.

In this context, it’s probably meant to represent the brand’s global marketplace. Adidas is available in three major continents: Europe, Asia, and North America.

Here is a video that shows one version of the NMD shoe:

YouTube Video by the Sole Supplier—NMD Japanese Writing

Why Is There Japanese NMD Writing on My Shoe?

There are three possible reasons for the Japanese writing on your Adidas NMD sneaker.

The first (and most likely) reason is that Adidas decided to market a unique shoe that purposefully included Japanese text.

A second possible reason is that you live in Japan or another country where Japanese is spoken. In this case, the writing is simply marketing copy targeted at Japanese speakers.

The third and most unlikely reason is that you bought a fake or replica Adidas NMD shoe. These shoes often have poor quality control and may feature random Japanese text as part of the design.

If you’re not sure which reason applies to you, take a look at the country of origin on your shoe’s tag.

If it says “Japan” or another Asian country, then it’s probably intentional Japanese marketing text.

What Language Is on the NMDs?

Depending on the particular NMD, you might see different languages on your shoes.

You might see:

  • French
  • Japanese
  • Chinese
  • English
  • German

On some versions of NMD, you’ll get several languages repeated across the entire shoe.

Final Thoughts: NMD Japanese Writing

The only way to know the exact translation of writing on your NMD Adidas is to check with a native speaker or someone with mastery of the language.

You can easily find a translation for free online on forum sites like Reddit or Quora.

If you wanted to pay a few dollars, you can even pay a native speaker on Fiverr or Upwork to translate the language on your shoes.

Check out these recommended NMD sneakers:

NMD Adidas ModelPrice
Adidas Originals Women’s NMD R1Check the current price
Adidas Originals Men’s NMD R1 SneakerCheck the current price
Adidas Originals Men’s NMD R1 Running ShoeCheck the current price
NMD Adidas Chart—NMD Japanese Writing

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