The Sport Footwear sales trend accelerated again in the last week of the eight-week back-to-school (BTS) season tracked by SportScanInfo (SSI Data), netting growth closer to the YTD and trailing 52-week periods.

Overall back-to-school Sport Footwear sales were up approximately 4.6 percent in the channels tracked in the SSI Data as a 5.5 percent increase in Athletic Footwear sales offset the continued declines in the Outdoor Footwear business.

From a gender standpoint, the men’s Sport Footwear business was up 6.1 percent for the BTS season and the kids’ business was up 5.5 percent while the women’s Sport Footwear business was flat.

Basketball category sales led the category growth for the back-to-school period, increasing more than 200 percent versus the comparable 8-week period last year. Running also posted solid growth for the season, increasing in the high-single-digits from the year-ago period.  Casual Athletic Footwear, the second-largest category tracked in the SSI Data, posted a mid– to high-single-digit decline for the season, hurt by a low-teens decrease in Lifestyle Fashion Athletic and a low-single0-digit decline in Classics that offset a mid-single-digit increase in Skate Footwear sales. The Training/Fitness and Sandals categories were both flat for the BTS season.

The Internet and Mid-Tier channels posted the highest growth for the BTS season, with both channels posting high-teens gains for the 8-week period. The Internet represented 9.0 percent of overall Sport Footwear sales tracked by SportScanInfo during the 8-week BTS season, up from 8.0 percent in the 2012 BTS season.

The back-to-school selling season is also the back-to-field season as student athletes lace up for football season. Sales of overall Football Shoes were up in the mid-teens for the 8-week BTS period. Iit appears at first look that parents may be pulling back from football for their young kids as sales of kids’ Football Shoes fell more than 10 percent for the BTS season.

Sales of Football Shoes in the largest trade channel for the category, Athletic Specialty/Sporting Goods, were down in the low-single-digits for the 8-week period ended September 14, but sales of Football Shoes on the Internet jumped more than 40 percent for the period. The Internet represented nearly 47 percent of Football Shoe sales tracked by SportScanInfo in the 8-week period, compared to less that 38 percent of sales in the comparable period last year.

The SportsOneSource Group is releasing a comprehensive back-to-school season review this month. To reserve your copy, send an email with “BTS Report” in the subject line to: