Hoka One One? What’s that?
Hoka One One is a brand of running shoes originating in France, but now headquartered on the California Coast. They started out by manufacturing shoes with huge oversized soles, which they called “Maximalist’. And to be honest, that’s what they are still known for.
Maximalist Shoes are a different direction to be heading in, honestly, as we all know that minimalist running shoes – even barefoot running – are all the rage. But instead of cutting down on weight and padding, Maximalist shoes add it in. Instead of running on little padding and feeling as close to the ground as possible, you feel like you’re running on pillows or clouds padded by another pillow or cloud.
And they turned out to be pretty popular; after Hoka One One started doing it, a bunch of other brands did as well. They must be doing something right. So we thought we’d scour through and see which Hoka shoes were worth checking out.
5 Hoka One One Shoes You Ought To Check Out
The Arahi is actually less of a maximalist shoe and more of a good midweight one; it’s still well padded and comfortable, as you would expect from Hoka, but is also designed to cut down on the weight just a little bit. It features Hoka’s premium midsole technology, as well as their J-Frame technology, a thin and firm EVA material that connects to the outsole pattern and provides support for overpronation. The 3D Puff Print Frame prevents hotspots, and the outside is made of high-abrasion rubber that stacks up to just about any terrain.
The Bondi 5 was Hoka’s first road running shoe, their flagship shoe you might say, and is about as maximalist a shoe as you will find. It has a full EVA midsole with all the padding and comfort Hoka provides, and the same 3d Puff Frame for lightweight support that is super breathable and cool, so your feet never get too sweaty. They’ve given the heel a moderate bevel, that transitions it comfortably for a good footing and placement as you run.
If you’re looking for the ultimate in on-road running comfort, the Bondi 5 is it.
The Clifton 4 is another road-runner from Hoka, but this time designed to be a little bit lighter and faster than the Bondi 5; it’s got a little bit less bulk, but is still quite padded and cushy, with Hoka’s midsole technology and a new forefoot that’s even smoother and more comfortable than before. The upper is breathable mesh. A solid, comfortable shoe for road running, like the Bondi 5, but just a little bit lighter and airier.
For trail-running. The Speedgoat 2 is designed for tackling the demands of any technical trail. It’s built one a wide last and EVA midsole that makes it comfortable but totally stable, with a wide toe box. On the outsole are stiff Vibram lugs, heavier-duty and more aggressive than past models, to achieve fantastic grip on any surface – rock, loose trail, gravel. The top, on the other hand, is breathable and lightweight, cutting down on weight and preparing you for high octane activities. Light, fast and supremely comfortable, this shoe is ready for all kinds of off-road adventures.
This technically isn’t a running shoe, but we thought we’d throw in a hiking shoe for good measure. The Tor Ultra Hi are snazzy hiking boots that weigh very little and feel wicked good on your feet. The midsole is a blend of EVA and RMAT material, and uses their Meta-Rocker technology, which has a low heel-to-toe differential and sculpted outsole to encourage your natural walking gait. (We love seeing this kind of thought put into shoes. Really, we do). This gives it a smooth roll from impact to toe-off.
All this is finished by a Vibram® MegaGrip outsole rubber, with heavy-duty 5mm lugs, and don’t forget the eVent waterproof technology, keeping your feet dry with a full bootie construction.
The Tor Ultra Hi weigh only 17 ounces, and have that sweet, colorful Hoka aesthetic. An excellent pair of hiking boots ready for tackling anything in style and comfort.