Smiling young man with brown hair and sporty hoodie holds a Nike FlyEase shoe.

Nike’s new, first truly-hands free shoe, The Nike Go FlyEase, is a reality because in 2012 a teen with cerebral palsy didn’t want his classmates tying his shoes. Matthew Walzer, 16 at the time, wrote a letter to Nike outlining his needs for an easy-entry shoe and challenging the company to create a product line that worked for a wider range of bodies.

“If Nike would design and produce basketball and running shoes with moderate support and some kind of closure system that could be used by everyone, Nike could create a shoe line that attracts people that face the same physical challenges I did and still do, yet it could still be possible for anyone to wear them,” he wrote.

He posted his letter on his blog,