Our Story

 

Meet Tony Post, aka, the To and the Po of our namesake, Topo Athletic.  With over 40 years of running and 30+ years of shoemaking on his resume, there is much to know about our founder and CEO.

Born and raised in Colorado, Tony made a pit stop in Tulsa, Oklahoma to do the whole “college” thing. At Tulsa, he walked onto the D1 track and cross country teams becoming the team captain, eventually ‘taking home some iron’ in a few races. More importantly, Tony fell in love with running.

 

 

With ambitions to train harder, get faster, and let’s be honest, not live landlocked anymore, Tony moved to Massachusetts and started training with a few top runners on Boston’s north shore.  

Unfortunately, his racing and training goals were often thwarted by injury, over-training, or ill-fitting shoes (foreshadowing, perhaps?).  

After a 2:25 marathon at Boston, Tony decided that a career in something other than running might be wise if he wants to, you know, eat and pay rent, so he takes a job at a small family-owned business called The Rockport Company. Inspired by running shoe technology, Rockport was the first shoe company to make comfortable lightweight casual and dress shoes. 

 

While at Rockport that Tony learned the craftsmanship of shoemaking. With great mentors, he learned the intricacies of last shapes, how to combine materials and shoe construction so the foot and body could move and walk naturally, and he learned how to make each pattern with thoughtfulness, simplicity, and integrity. 

Tony tested Rockport prototypes regularly on his lunchtime runs, which ultimately led him to run the 1990 NYC marathon and 1992 London marathon in Rockport DresSports, showcasing the performance and comfort of Rockport dress shoes.

 

After 15 years at Rockport, Tony moved on to another small, family-owned company famous for it’s sole, Vibram. While CEO of Vibram USA for 11 years, Tony not only helped dozens of footwear companies build a better platform, he helped spark the natural running movement with Vibram FiveFingers, an innovative footwear design created by his Italian colleagues. 

Tony soon discovered that less cushioning and a more level platform encouraged a midfoot strike.  Among the first to try running in FiveFingers, he noticed he was landing lighter, with a shorter, quicker stride – and to his surprise his knees and back didn’t hurt any more.   

 

After Vibram, Tony knew there was still something missing from the market—a shoe that allowed runners to access the important benefits of natural running while maintaining some of their favorite features found in traditional running shoes.

Sure, other brands had tried to do this, but Tony literally felt their shortcomings: too narrow, too sloppy, too stiff, too soft, too thick, too heavy… not to mention, most of them didn’t look that great either.  Tony decided he had to create another footwear company so he could deliver the experience he himself craved so much. 

In the late summer of 2013, Tony and a small team launched the brand, Topo Athletic, with a mission to develop footwear that helps amplify the body’s natural and intuitive abilities.  These would not be exclusively minimal shoes or shoes with toes, Topo would offer a range of athletic shoes designed to honor the shape of the foot and respect the body’s mechanics.  Only then could an athlete harness the increased efficiency and fluidity of uninhibited human movement. 

 

 

It’s not easy to start a new business in hyper competitive market, but Tony and the team at Topo Athletic remain fueled by their passion for running, fitness, and their love of sport.  For over 20 years people have been asking Tony what really is his favorite shoe, to which he always replies, ‘the next one!’  

Thanks for checking out ACU-Running, brought to you by Topo Athletic.

Before you start this program, please note the following things: 

Thanks for taking the time to read this and we hope you enjoy the ACU-Running Program!

Team ACU-Running

BRAD COX

Brad Cox Lic.Ac. is a Movement Specialist, ACU-Running Coach and Licensed Acupuncturist specializing in Orthopedic Acupuncture and Sports Medicine.  He is the co-Founder and CEO of ACU-Mobility and ACU-Running.  ACU-Mobility is an educational and mobility products company, dedicated to the development of unique sport specific corrective exercise programs and innovative product design.  Brad has treated hundreds of athletes including: Olympic and world class Runners, Triathletes, Power Lifters, Elite Crossfitters and Professional Strong Men.  He is a consultant and running mechanics expert for TOPO Athletic.  He teaches workshops and seminars on running mechanics, mobility and movement analysis around the U.S.

DR. SONIA PASQUALE

Dr. Sonia Pasquale D.C., Lic.Ac. is a Chiropractor, Sports Physician, Licensed Acupuncturist, Movement Specialist, Nutrition Counselor and Co-Founder of ACU-Mobility and ACU-Running systems.  She has specialties in Orthopedics, Functional Movement Analysis, Functional Medicine and Women's Health.  She incorporates advanced Chiropractic and Acupuncture manual techniques to create a unique integrative approach to treatment.  She works with both Elite and Novice athletes to help them achieve their individual physical goals.  She is the Director and co-Owner of Wakefield Wellness Center outside of Boston MA.

CHRIS LEHMAN

Chris Lehman , Lic.Ac., MAOM, Dipl. OM is a Licensed Acupuncturist, Chinese Herbalist, Movement Specialist and ACU-Running Coach.  Chris Specializes in Orthopedic Acupuncture and functional movement analysis working with all kinds of Athletes.  He focuses on balancing the body through Acupuncture and manual therapies to enhance proper biomechanics with an emphasis in sports medicine and injury prevention.

KAITLIN ALLEN

Kaitlin graduated from the University of Massachusetts Boston with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing.  After graduation she worked for a short time in the Med/Neuro ICU at Moore County Regional Hospital in NC.  Kaitlin has been an avid runner for many years, having completed several road races at both the half marathon and marathon distance, before switching to trail running.  Her love for trail running came from the many long distance hiking trails she has completed, such as the Continental Divide Trail and Appalachian Trail.  She is excited to share her love for running by being part of the ACU-Mobility team!

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