Over the last 10+ years, I have run in a bunch of On Cloud shoes and always come away with the feeling that what they labeled as “cushioned” was not. That’s changed with the Cloudmonster.
As you know I’m always honest in my running shoe reviews with what I like, dislike and what might work for you that wasn’t a fit for me! Which is why when someone asks about On Running shoes I’ve always said I think they’re good, but their everyday run shoes didn’t feel great to my foot.
Now I’ve been putting miles on the Cloudmonster and it’s a steady part of my running shoe rotation.
Technically the brand is simply, On. But maybe you, like me, noticed that trying to just search ON or On running never quite got you where you wanted to go, so that’s why you may see them referred to as On, On Running, or On Cloud.
There is no one perfect running shoe for all runners, so I’m going to share my findings. But as always I encourage you to head in to a running store and put them on! Run around the shop and see what you think.
On Cloudmonster Details
This is their newest shoe and the first one I would truly say feels cushioned. I am really enjoying running in these and would compare it to a Hoka Clifton. Which I hope gives you an idea right away of the cushion level. Though it’s called max cushioning, we aren’t talking about something super plush like a Hoka Bondi.
Instead, this is maintain the firmness you need to be quick off the ground, while finally providing that feel good cushion.
It’s my overall pick for best On Running Shoe!
- 6mm heel drop
- 8.11 oz women’s
- 9.70 oz men’s
- Max cushioned
- Available in two colors for women and two for men
- Available at On Running, REI and retail stores for $170
The Cloudstratus was previously considered their max cushion shoe and I would say it’s still firmer than something like the low profile Saucony Kinvara.
The Cloudmonster pods are slightly larger than other models and combined with their Helion Superfoam to create that combination of cushion, plus power. In a super plush shoe, you lose the spring off the ground and that’s a component that On is not willing to sacrifice.
While they also mention the Cloudmonster has a rocker design to it, which they call “pretty extreme”, I don’t notice that in the run.
Skecher’s also says they still have some of this in their designs, but it’s not noticeable. So don’t think this is going to be like those super hyped shoes that literally rolled you forward and resulted in tons of ankle overuse injuries.
But who isn’t against a little boost in your speed, so who knows you might feel it and fall in love!
In general, On Running shoes are a little more narrow than some brands. The Cloudboom Carbon Fiber shoe is one I enjoy, but it runs so small I would need to go up a full size to use it for more than a mile or two.
I would say the width is similar to a number of ASICS or Mizuno running shoes.
The tongue is super thin, breathable and comfortable. I have seen this trend in a number of shoes lately to cut weight, but not everyone has nailed. Take the Altra Torrin where the thin tongue is shoe rigid it cuts in to my ankle.
I’ve found these shoes are pretty comfortable on most easy runs. I could probably wear them up to the marathon distance, but right now they remain in my 6-8 mile shoe selection. They’re light enough to make a great 5K or 10K shoe too for the average runner.
On 90% of my running shoes, I use a heel lock lacing and these have enough laces to make that easily doable.
Bonus: I really like the way Cloundmonster looks. That’s not really fit or function, but I feel like it matters! All of the On shoes have a really classic feel, which is probably due to the Swiss design which they believe is really important.
What You Need to Know About On Running Shoes
On started in 2010 in Switzerland, when yet again another runner thought “I could do this better.”
This time it was three retired professional athletes, who decided there needed to be a shoe that had more firmness to create that bounce off the ground, along with cushion.
On uses CloudTec technology which is what makes their shoe look and feel different.
The pods (or clouds) compress both horizontally and vertically and then rapidly expand, helping to propel you faster off the ground.
And in fact, those clouds are different sizes based on the shoe and the goal for that shoe.
Is it like running on clouds?
No. Not cloudlike in that plush fluffy kind of way.
So for me, no…not at all like a cloud. And that’s not all bad.
In my On Running Shoes Review, I go in to all the reasons that there are benefits to the pod design and why other runners have loved them from the start. So checkout that if you’re curious to learn more.
Drawbacks to On Running Shoes
As noted, every runner has a preference, so there are just a couple of things from my experience.
- They are not ideal for those with high arches or a high mid-foot
- Most On Cloud shoes run narrow, and the toebox is not wide (they have started created specific wide models!)
- Rocks stuck in between the pods make them not ideal on trails or gravel running.
- I ran in to trouble with the thick toebox creasing in weird spots on the top of my foot in some models
- Not much traction to these shoes
I found the Carbon fiber shoe to run small, but otherwise I have found them to run true to size.
Checkout this shoe finder to help find the right size and which shoe is comparable to what you’ve been running in.
All right I hope this On Cloudmonster review gave you some info to help you make a shoe decision! If there’s more you want to see in a review let me know!
Looking for other running shoes??
- On Cloud vs Brooks Running
- On Cloud vs Hoka
- How to Tell if Running Shoes Fit Properly
- How to Clean Running Shoes
Other ways to connect with Amanda
Instagram Daily Fun: RunToTheFinish
Facebook Community Chatter: RunToTheFinish