Robert, I have run about 150 miles in mine, so far, only about 8 or so for my longest. Given that I am age 62, weigh 150#, have over 70,000 miles on my legs, and live in KC, where it's quite cold right now (so the asphalt roads feel quite hard), using the HOKA's has been nice for a shoe that gives quite a bit of cushioning, which I like! I'll probably return to my Vomero's and Pegasus in the spring, but am tempted to try the HOKA's for a 50 km road/trail (some of each surface) in late April. I have a running friend, who is female and about 30 years old, run a 50 miler in them, as well as her long runs, and her 50 was done in about 8:14, so they can be a good distance shoe for the right person. The HOKA's did take a run or two to get used to, but isn't that the case for any new shoe if we change brands? They are quite lightweight as a trainer, too.
Oh, and I race a 5 km in LunaRacers, so I don't use just heavy shoes entirely.
I started wearing them this past summer. It is a great shoe for recovery runs on hard surfaces. They do require more effort because they are so soft. Also, I bought a pair of the trail shoes as well. Because of the extra cushioning, you really have to pick your feet up so you don't hit your feet on rocks! I'm a bit of a shuffler and so I don't wear them on trails any longer.
I had a neuroma and after wearing the hoka's for a few months, it has disappeared.
I own a pair of Hoka Stinson Evo that I just retired after 600+ miles. Many who have tried them have positive things to say. As stated, they are great for longer and recovery runs. They give a very smooth ride with no subsequent knee or foot pain.
On the downside, they are pricey. These are not an impulse buy unless you are a LetsRun poster (who all run a sub-14 5K and make >250K / year). The counter argument is that the extended mileage you can get from these makes up for the cost.
Another issue is the awful colors they keep offering that invite comparisons to clown shoes.
The company has been purchased by Deckers so the Hokas are becoming more widely available. I recommend finding a retailer and trying them on. Many will be quite surprised. If not available locally, I know of at least one online retailer that allows no-hassle returns if size is not right.
No problem with ankle sprains and I have sprained mine many times in 42 years of running. I was afraid of that too. something about the volume/softness/density of the cushioning bridges over any rock/root to remain stable.
Like others have said they provide great cushioning without feeling bulky. I was thinking about them for awhile, then when I saw my friend flying down the bike path running faster, and recovering run to run better than in years, so I tried them.
After 1200 miles in one pair, the stinson evo's, I'm convinced they are the best shoe for me now, I'm 220 lb/over 90,000 miles in my legs and I run about 50 miles a week. My feet do not hurt anymore after rooty/rocky trail runs and they are low to the ground (4-6mm) so its easy to run naturally.
Now I have another pair but still use the old pair for hiking.
The firm but soft comment from a poster above sounds like the shoe may be similar to the Adidas Energy Boost which I began running in recently. It feels soft and squishy to run in, yet when you flex and twist the sole with your hands there's a fair amount of resistance. I have less discomfort in the bottoms of my feet and ankles when wearing them, but I'm noticing a little discomfort in my Achilles. Jury's still out.
Been using them for about 2.5 years now. I like to think I was one of the early adapters..ha! They seem to work for me. Not sure if there is any shoe that is the magical answer, but these come close for me.
I would describe the Stinson model as basically their "flagship" model. It performs equally well on trails and roads, it's durable (I think I am up to about 800 miles in one pair, just got rid of a pair with over 1100 miles) and it's actually nowhere near as heavy as it looks. From what I've heard, Hoka has no plans to do anything with this model other than small updates.
I've tested them.
Very well cushioned
The foot will sink a little into the soft foam
Stable, due to the foot being cradled and the relatively wide/straight platform
Low heel:forefoot ramp
Stiff with a rocker feel
Personally prefer a more natural feel. It sort of feels like the shoe is running you. I prefer more flexibility. Like I said, something different.
so much for the ultra barefoot movement. will the next book be "cushioned to run"?
so much for the ultra barefoot movement. will the next book be "cushioned to run"?
I wear my Vibrams inside of my Hokas
I think a huge part of what scares people off, like Rojo, is the initial cost. I would honestly try to pick up a pair on ebay for around $100 (or less) and see if they work for you. I will say that while there is almost no break in time, it took about a month for me to really feel comfortable in them. Buy them from a place like Road Runner Sports, pay the 1.99 "member" fee and you have 90 days to use them and if you don't like them, return them. Not trying to shill, don't work for them, but it's a good way to "test" shoes.
Of course, my sisters were just making fun of me this weekend for wearing "Shape Ups" as they called them.
I'm on my 2nd pair. For trail races from 13.1 to 50k they're awesome! Ran my best trail marathon ever in them - primarily b/c the cushion helps keep me on my feet (it was also the first trail race I finished without a crash/fall). The cushion helps you run over rocks and roots without needing to worry about your foooting as much so you can focus on turn over and speed more than usual on a trail. Also, they really do help keep the legs fresher on course.
Alll that said, I've taken them out for some tempo-ish long runs (13-15 mi) and can't say they're made for speed - I have to work harder for the pace - which is fine for training, but I wouldn't toe the line at a road race in them.
The marketing about time to fly - on downhills - I get it. You really can fly down some inclines in them. That said, its hard to get up on your toes for going up hills, so they fight back a little there.
THe stability they give me on a trail is well worth the price, but I stick with my Asics for every day running on the streets.
I have but just barely. Did they invent the high cushioning category (aka “maximalism”) and how long have they been around?
I think it's been done before in the mid 70's with Nike's LD 1000. The problem I have with fads, either new or recycled, is that there isn't enough testing to determine whether there is any long term damage from these overstuffed shoes.
I'm pretty sure the consensus on the LD 1000s was that they did, in fact, cause more problems than they cured. Same could be said for minimalism. So can maximalism be all that far behind? Only time will tell. In the meantime I'm running in those Nike Flynit models and they might be the best shoe I've ever owned. Fortunately I got them for well under the $160 asking price.
I'm waiting a little bit longer before I jump on the Hoka (Teva/Ugs) bandwagon. From what I've read every other brand will have a version in the coming year so the price might be coming down sooner rather than later.
I read about people saying they can get 600-1000+ miles on these shoes and that helps offset the high cost but I've been through a couple pairs of them and they get about the same 300-400 as regular shoes and I'm 135lb. I'm sure you can push them to get that kind of mileage but the EVA foam loses its cushioning properties after 300-400 miles. After that, what good does it running in them?? I have bad knees so I can tell when it starts to lose its cushioning.
Rojo, I'm sure you have enough connections to get you a pair for a decent percentage off if not cost or even free
I bought the Bondi about two months ago with the intent to wear them only for real easy "recovery" runs, but now wear them for everything except faster runs.
The pair I bought are grey so they are not as freaky as some other ones I have seen.
I wouldn't wear clog that if you paid me 170 pounds
Minimalism, this guy at our club wore some wacky shoes for a xc as if spikes are not minamalist enough
They are an interesting feeling shoe for descending. However, if you plan on being a top trail guy look at what top trail guys are wearing. Looks like Nike, Salamon, Scott, and maybe adidas. Haven't seen any runners winning competitive races in hoka sorry.
Just for mileage purposes, not worth it. 600 miles out of one shoe can be done with plenty of nice shoes without paying nearly 200. Plus hoka looks hideous and clunky. If you want negative attention from the opposite sex, go right ahead and drop 200
I fit their target market (46 y.o. w/ injury worries). I just bought my 3rd pair of Bondi Bs. They look stupid, and they're not cheap, but if they keep me running, then I'm not complaining. First time out they felt like running on pillows, and like everybody else I thought they'd be slow. But I haven't seen any evidence of that in races so far. I'm not as fast as some of you folks on here, but I generally finish in the top 1%-2% in road races, and I'm finding that running ~6 min/mile in Hokas is no harder than it was running them in Sauconys before. Oh, there's perhaps one important difference - the recovery. I did a New Years race this evening, and normally would be hobbling around stiffly afterwards, but I can feel barely anything in the old legs tonight.
I haven't had any stability issues with them. I was disappointed in the durability of the uppers in my first pair, but the second pair seems to be holding up better. I wonder if that's because the humid summer is harder on them - they would get rather squelchy on long summer runs. More so than I had notice on other types of shoes.