Welcome to the New Shoe Review, a new segment on our blog where our shoe buyer explains every new and updated model we receive at John’s Run/Walk Shop. Today, we review the HOKA Clifton.
When I first put on the HOKA Clifton, I immediately felt the difference. Running in the Clifton is like a dream. I didn’t want to stop! It’s light like a racing flat with the cushion of a shoe that’s five times heavier. A shoe that feels this good is all the motivation I need to get out on the road and run. This is not hyperbole; this is the most impressive shoe I’ve ever worn.
Why is this shoe so special? Typically, the softer a shoe is made, the heavier it becomes. The heavier the shoe is, the stronger it must be constructed, and that only adds more weight. What you get as a result is a soft, yet heavy shoe that’s comfortable but hard to wear, especially on longer runs. However, the Clifton is about 5-6 ounces lighter than most typical premium trainers (Glycerin, Nimbus, Vomero, Triumph) and softer as well. With a price of $130 (compared to $150 like many others), this shoe is hard to beat.
The Clifton is lighter than nearly every running shoe on the market, even many minimal shoes. It’s softer than every other trainer we’ve sold not named “HOKA.” Its no-sew upper fits like a glove, or even a sock. And its deep meta-rocker midsole provides the perfect blend of marshmallow cushion and a secure, supportive feel.
Fit: The Clifton fits pretty true to running shoe size. It’s not as deep as the Conquest or Bondi 3, so it feels a little more natural, especially to those who typically wear other shoes.
Feel: Strikingly soft, with a noticeable arch that isn’t overbearing. Lowered heel is apparent while running.
Look: Nowhere near as bulky or outlandish as many of HOKA’s other shoes.
Grade: A. This shoe has set the standard for years to come, and it may be HOKA’s biggest hit ever.
- Weighs 7.9 oz (men) and 6.9 oz (women)
- 5mm heel-toe offset
- Traditional laces for a more secure feel
- Men’s sizes 7.5 – 14, Women’s sizes 6 – 11
- Medium width only
- $130 retail