On burst on to the running shoe scene with an innovative new midsole design in 2012 and established itself in a fiercely competitive marketplace – no mean feat. However, the Swiss brand has dropped off the standard of the best running shoes in my opinion, thanks to the lack of bounce in its CloudTec cushioning.
The On Cloudmonster, a comfortable and versatile max-cushioned shoe that came out last year, was an improvement on that front, but it’s the new On Cloudsurfer that might really change my opinion of the brand.
That’s down to the new CloudTec Phase midsole design. There are still holes in the midsole, which is made from On’s soft Helion foam, but they are smaller and now shaped to create a domino effect where each compresses in turn upon landing.
In combination with the rocker geometry, this creates a smooth and comfortable ride where your foot is rolled from heel to toe. I’ve run only twice in the new Cloudsurfer so far, but I’ve enjoyed those runs immensely. It’s much softer than other On shoes without being spongy, so it responds well to faster paces, especially since it’s quite light at 246g/8.7oz in my UK 9.
It’s early days and I will do plenty more running in this Cloudsurfer for the full review, but early impressions are that this should be a very good daily trainer, and the most enjoyable On shoe I’ve run in. It’s certainly a big upgrade on the previous Cloudsurfer, which was a firm shoe without much bounce in the midsole.
The new On Cloudsurfer is the seventh generation of the shoe and will be available from 23rd March. It will cost £150 in the UK, which is a £10 rise on the price of the Cloudsurfer 6. It has a 10mm drop, which is 1mm less than the drop of the previous Cloudsurfer.
Get the Coach Newsletter
Sign up for workout ideas, training advice, reviews of the latest gear and more.
Nick Harris-Fry is a journalist who has been covering health and fitness since 2015. Nick is an avid runner, covering 70-110km a week, which gives him ample opportunity to test a wide range of running shoes and running gear. He is also the chief tester for fitness trackers and running watches, treadmills and exercise bikes, and workout headphones.