In the grand arena of comfort and bounce, two titans prepare for the ultimate showdown. Today we’ll be looking at the On Cloudmonster vs Hoka Bondi. On one side, the On Cloudmonster, a marvel of engineering that breaks all the rules with its featherlight design and cloud pod tech, promising a run so smooth, you’d think you’re levitating. On the other, the Hoka Bondi, the behemoth of cushion that scoffs at the ground below, armed with a plush EVA foam midsole that turns every step into a soft embrace.
This isn’t just a race; it’s a clash of philosophies, a duel where more than just speed is at stake. Will the Cloudmonster’s innovative approach to comfort and performance reign supreme, or will the Bondi’s unapologetic maxim of “more is more” prove unstoppable? Lace up and lean in; the great shoe showdown is about to begin.
- Weight: On Cloudmonster is lighter compared to Hoka Bondi.
- Stack Height/Drop: Similar stack heights but different insole experiences.
- Midsole Material: Cloudmonster uses Helion foam; Bondi uses EVA foam.
- Design Aesthetic: Cloudmonster offers a unique design; Bondi maintains a traditional Hoka look.
- Price: Cloudmonster is slightly more expensive than Bondi.
- Intended Use: Both are daily trainers but excel in different aspects of running.
On Cloudmonster vs Hoka Bondi: Specs Comparison Table
|9.7 oz. (M) / 8.1 oz. (W)
|10.8 oz. (M) / 8.9 oz. (W)
|Daily Trainer/Long Run
|Daily Trainer/Long Run
|Softest Helion Foam, Reversible
|Soft EVA Midsole, Engineered Mesh Upper
The On Cloudmonster marks a significant shift in On’s approach to running shoes, breaking away from the traditional firm feel associated with the brand. It’s lauded for its soft Helion foam and unique cloud pod design, offering a ride that is as fun as it is functional.
On Cloudmonster Specs
- Men: 9.7 oz. (275 g) for a US M8.5
- Women: 8.1 oz. (230 g) for a US W7
- Heel: 30 mm
- Forefoot: 26 mm
- Drop: 4 mm
Use Range: Daily trainer/long run
- Softest iteration of Helion foam
- Unique cloud pod architecture for a smooth ride
- Lightweight design with a focus on comfort and responsiveness
Official Link to On Website
The fit might be contentious for some, with a slightly shallow toe box but generally offers a secure, breathable experience thanks to its recycled polyester upper. It’s a departure from On’s typical fit, aiming for a more versatile approach.
Its performance is where the Cloudmonster truly shines, providing a bouncy and comfortable ride without sacrificing responsiveness. The exaggerated rocker aids in smooth transitions, making it a joy to run in across various distances.
On Cloudmonster Expanded Pros and Cons
- Exceptionally Soft and Responsive Helion Foam: The Cloudmonster features the softest iteration of On’s proprietary Helion foam, providing an unmatched blend of softness and responsiveness. This unique foam composition offers a cushioned ride that absorbs impact while delivering energy return, making each step feel light and propulsive.
- Unique Cloud Pod Design Enhances the Running Experience: The innovative cloud pod configuration underfoot is engineered to work with the Helion foam, offering a dynamic running experience. This design allows for individual pod compression and release during the stride, which not only increases comfort but also improves efficiency by effectively responding to varied terrains and running styles.
- Lightweight for Its Cushion Level: Despite its generous cushioning, the Cloudmonster manages to maintain a relatively lightweight profile. This is particularly beneficial for runners who do not want to sacrifice speed for comfort, allowing for agile movements and faster pace without the bulk typically associated with maximally cushioned shoes.
- Upper Fit Might Not Suit Everyone: While the Cloudmonster aims to provide a versatile and adaptive fit, some runners might find the toe box shallow or the overall fit peculiar. This inconsistency could affect the lockdown and comfort for those with specific fit preferences or foot shapes.
- Quality Issues with Upper Construction in Some Cases: There have been reports of the upper’s construction not holding up as expected, with some experiencing premature wear, such as peeling of the heat-welded sections. For a shoe at this price point, durability concerns can be disappointing and may necessitate careful handling or maintenance.
- Pricey for a Daily Trainer: At $170, the Cloudmonster is positioned at the higher end of the market for daily trainers. While its innovative features and performance benefits justify the cost for many, the price tag may be a barrier for runners on a budget or those hesitant to invest heavily in a single pair of running shoes.
The Hoka Bondi continues to evolve, offering a plush, cushioned ride synonymous with the brand’s ethos. Its latest iteration balances cushioning with responsiveness, making it a versatile option for various running needs.
Hoka Bondi Specs
- Men: 10.8 oz. (307 g) for a US M9
- Women: 8.9 oz. (252 g) for a US W7.5
- Heel: 31 mm
- Forefoot: 27 mm
- Drop: 4 mm
Midsole: Soft EVA midsole for plush cushioning
- Engineered mesh upper for breathability
- Pillowed tongue for added comfort
- Extended heel design for stable and smooth transitions
Official Link to On Website
While offering a secure and stable fit, the Bondi might feel narrow to some runners, particularly in the forefoot. Its engineered mesh upper and pillowed tongue add comfort and breathability.
Bondi excels in providing a stable and smooth ride, ideal for recovery days and long runs. The extended heel and wider base contribute to its stability, making it a reliable choice for extended wear.
Hoka Bondi Pros and Cons
- High-Level Cushioning Perfect for Recovery Days: The Bondi’s hallmark is its plush cushioning, which provides exceptional shock absorption and comfort, making it an ideal choice for recovery days. The soft EVA midsole cradles the foot, helping to alleviate stress on the joints and muscles, which is crucial for runners looking to minimize fatigue and enhance recovery between sessions.
- Improved Responsiveness Without Losing Plushness: With each iteration, the Bondi has struck a better balance between cushioning and responsiveness. The latest version introduces a softer, lighter foam that retains the plush feel while offering a bit more energy return. This improvement means runners can enjoy the traditional comfort of the Bondi with a slightly more lively ride, suitable for a broader range of paces.
- Durable Outsole with Ample Traction: The Bondi features a robust outsole that provides reliable traction across various surfaces, contributing to the shoe’s overall durability. This is particularly beneficial for runners who log high mileage and require a shoe that can withstand extensive wear without compromising on grip or stability.
- Heavier Compared to Some Competitors: While the Bondi is designed for maximum cushioning, its weight can be a drawback, especially for those used to lighter shoes. The additional heft may be noticeable on longer runs or when trying to pick up the pace, potentially affecting running efficiency for some athletes.
- Narrow Fit May Not Accommodate All Runners: Despite improvements in the upper design, the Bondi’s fit remains on the narrow side, particularly in the forefoot area. Runners with wider feet or those who prefer a more spacious toe box might find the fit constrictive, which could lead to discomfort or the need to size up or opt for a wide version.
- Less Lively for Speedwork or Races: Although the Bondi 8 has made strides in responsiveness, it is still primarily geared towards comfort and stability over speed. Runners looking for a versatile shoe that can easily transition from long runs to tempo sessions or races might find the Bondi’s performance less dynamic compared to other models designed with a broader range of activities in mind.
On Cloudmonster vs Hoka Bondi: Conclusion
When comparing the On Cloudmonster vs Hoka Bondi, each shoe excels for different types of runners. The Cloudmonster offers a unique, fun ride with its innovative foam and design, making it ideal for those seeking a fresh and responsive daily trainer. Its lightweight nature and fun factor make it a great choice for long runs and daily training with a twist.
The Hoka Bondi, on the other hand, continues to be a staple for runners prioritizing cushioning and comfort. Its stable and smooth ride makes it perfect for recovery runs and those looking for maximum protection without sacrificing too much speed.
Which Shoe Should You Choose?
- For Runners Seeking Innovation and Lightness: Choose the On Cloudmonster for its unique design, responsiveness, and lighter weight.
- For Runners Prioritizing Cushion and Comfort: Opt for the Hoka Bondi, especially if recovery runs and long distances are your focus.
Ultimately, the choice between the On Cloudmonster and Hoka Bondi boils down to personal preference in fit, feel, and the type of running experience you’re seeking. Both shoes stand out in their respective niches, offering something special for different runner needs.