January 31, 2013
One of our goals at The Running Event in Austin, TX (industry trade show for specialty retailers) was to highlight some of the newer shoe companies that our visitors may have never heard of.
Innovation and competition make us all better. The same thing applies to shoes.
LRC has a special place for shoe companies started by former competitive athletes. On Running is one such company.
Olivier Bernhard, the founder of On, was a former world class triathlete (5th at Ironman World Championships). His triathlon career became hampered by Achilles problems. So what did Olivier do? He tried to solve the problem himself by tinkering with his own shoes.
He cut up a garden hose and glued the pieces to the bottom of his Nike shoes. It provided him relief. “It felt great. I never thought I would build a running shoe for the masses. It was solution for a problem I had.”
The slogan of On is “Run on Clouds.” That key component of On shoes is the CloudTec technology. The “clouds” on the bottom of the shoes are intended to not only provide vertical cushioning but horizontal cushioning. You can see a little video demo yourself at On-Running.com.
The shoe has had some success in the triathlon. According to Olivier, France’s David Hauss ran 29:43 for 10k at the Olympics to finish fourth in On shoes and Switzerland’s Caroline Steffen got 2nd at the Ironman World Championships in Kona this year in the shoes. Olivier said a marathoner has run 2:07 in the shoes as well. (Update an emailer has told us that Geoffrey Gikuni Ndungu won the 2011 Dublin Marathon in 2:08:33 in On shoes)
And we couldn’t resist the urge to goad Olivier about triathletes not being able to hack it as runners. Olivier talks about On below and even admits that most triathletes can’t hack it as runners.
Olivier On On-Running
More on On at On-Running.com.