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Founded in 2009, Altra Running is headquartered in Logan, Utah. It all started when Golden Harper started cutting up and reconfiguring existing running shoes in hopes of designing something better.
Along with co-founders, Brian Beckstead, Jeremy Howlett and Quirl Jacob Hansen, he came up with the idea for a “Zero Drop” shoe, meaning that the goal was to create shoes that lacked a height differential between the heel and toe area. When you consider that many of today’s athletic shoes pad the heel so much that they resemble high heels, this was a revolutionary idea! When no companies expressed interest in the design, the foursome partnered with Pulse Labs (an engineering firm at Brigham Young University), contracted manufacturers in Asia and launched Altra Footwear on their own. The name “Altra” is derived from the Latin word “altera,” which means “to fix or mend something that is broken.”