Sportswear company K-Swiss has expanded its commitment to the running market with the opening of its first US-based running retail store in Santa Monica, California.

It hopes the retail location will elevate the brand's presence leading up to and during the LA Marathon in March 2010. It is also the race's official footwear and apparel sponsor.

"The Santa Monica store will play a key role in our partnership with the LA Marathon, especially since the finish line is less than a mile away from the store," said David Nichols, executive vice president of K-Swiss.

K-Swiss Santa Monica will sell performance footwear, apparel and accessories as well as lifestyle items.

The company already operates running stores in Taiwan, Korea, Singapore and Hong Kong.