Cloudsurfer Shoe Review

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On Cloudsurfer Running Shoes

Cloudsurfer – Riding A Cloud

The On Cloudsurfer is one of those shoes you may have overlooked as we almost did when we attended “The Running Event” here in Austin.  The magic behind the shoe is what On refers to as their CloudTec system.  Like many products we have seen, we were a little skeptical as to how the shoe would perform.   It seems almost every shoe company these days has their own gimmicks and fads, some good and some, well not so good.  The shoes may look a little quirky compared to many of the top brands, but don’t let that fool you.  In a lot of ways, On’s CloudTec technolgy reminds us of Newton’s running shoes with their patented lug fronts, but unlike Newton the CloudTec system runs the whole length of the shoe and is housed in individual pods.  The pods are designed to transform running energy into forward motion or at least that is what On claims.  The shoes are also designed to give you a cushioned landing with a barefoot type takeoff.

On Cloudsurfer Running Shoes bottomOn (Yep that is the company’s name) was the concept of Olivier Bernhard and his friends David Allemann and Caspar Coppetti.  Together they had an idea about how to build a better set of running shoes.  Something that had never been designed before.  Their first experiments in shoe design used pieces of garden hoses for cushioning.  Since that time the shoes have evolved going through various stages of development, and product testing.  The On Cloudsurfer is culmination of their hard work.  Something really unique in the running industry.

The shoes are developed in Switzerland and made in Vietnam.  The CloudTec system is activated with every step, where the rubber elements on the bottom, cushions your landing then locks firm for a powerful takeoff.  The cushioning or clouds as On refers to them,  almost feels like your running on carpet.   What we have noticed is your legs simply don’t feel as tired running in these as they do with practically any other shoe we have tested.  I am not sure if this is a placebo effect or if it is the shoes themselves, but whatever it is, it seems to work.  During my last run in these, I felt like I had an extra gear near the end of the run.  My legs felt fantastic.

On Cloudsurfer Running Shoes backThe Cloudsurfer retails for $129, which puts it at a premium in the running shoe world, but much less than many of it’s competitors.   The shoe comes in sizes 6-10 for women and 8-14 for men.  There are 2 color options for men {black/lime & silver/orange} and 3 for women {black/lime, aqua/coral & glacier/white}.  It has a heel to toe offset of about 7 mm and weighs 285g | 10oz for a US mens 8.5.

The Cloudsurfer is true to size, so if you wear a 10.5, you should feel pretty confident that the same size will work.  The Cloudsurfer is also a neutral shoe, so if you are a big pronator or supinator, these may not be the optimal shoes for you.

People running in the Cloudsurfer for the first few time may experience muscle soreness as they get used to the CloudTech system technology.

Who are these shoes for?  Anyone looking to try something new and exciting.  The CloudTech system really works and provides a substantial amount of cushioning.  Athletes who are training for distance races may find these especially good for their long runs, where distance and pounding on the pavement can take its toll.

Minimalist runners may find these to have way too much cushioning and therefore dismiss them altogether.  On does have a shoe called the Cloudracer, which has a lower profile and not as much cushioning.

Here is a pretty cool video featuring the shoes.

Check out On and the Cloudsurfer for more information.

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About Author

Tom Crandall

Totally into multi-sports including triathlon, swimming, cycling, running skating and movement in general. Love to trail run and hang outdoors.

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