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ON Cloudflow Performance Review

The popularity of the ON Cloud running shoes has been on the rise. Their designs look sleek and technical, and the outsole is comprised of CloudTec™ structures that look like little pillows for your foot to land on. These are designed for a more sophisticated consumer with a taste for style and trends, but are they good for running?

On Cloudflow Top

The Good

Thomas: This is the third ON running shoe I have put to the test. So far, these are my favorite. While I really liked the Cloudsurfer, the fit and feel of the Cloudflow is more appealing. The Cloudflow is a nice blend between the Cloudflyer and Cloudsurfer. The Cloudflow is a light daily trainer weighing 8.95 oz. for a USA size 10.5.

The finishing on the upper is soooo SLICK. Probably the best finishing details I have seen in a running shoe. Every element is engineered to create a product that feels luxurious and well thought out. The upper fits well too. I had no rubbing or hot spots in the Cloudflow. The collar of the shoe is comfortable and I did not experience heel lift while running. The tongue is fully connected to the interior of the shoe, you will not have any problems with it sliding around. The engineered mesh is airy and breathable.

The midsole is on the firmer side. The Cloudflow offers a smooth ride that doesn’t feel that different from a traditional midsole. The shoe feels surprisingly stable underfoot. If you are looking to feel a pop from the “clouds” you might be disappointed.

Moving on to the outsole, in dry conditions the grip was good and the softer rubber in the toe of the shoe allowed for a good sense of propulsion on toe off.

Meaghan: If you’re familiar with ON shoes, the Cloudflow is the perfect combination of the Cloudflyer and Cloudsurfer. It’s a durable, lightweight, everyday trainer that I find myself wearing for short runs, long runs, fast runs and everything in between. First things first, these shoes are comfortable. Apparently, they’re designed with “a first-layer in-built sock.” I don’t know exactly what that is, but they feel great on my feet. The tongue looks thin, but the material is super soft and cushy. It’s just enough material to protect the tops of your feet from tight lacing. The upper is designed with a weaved mesh that’s supportive but also super breathable. The design is simple and sleek.

The outsole is made up of 18 “clouds” (pods). These pods collapse on impact and expand on take-off. The whole mentality behind this is so you “spend more time in the air.” I like them. They have a really nice bounce to them. ON also kept these shoes nice and light. My W7.5 came in at 6.85 oz. You can’t beat that for an everyday trainer.

On Cloudflow Bottom

The Bad

Thomas: While the laces look “cool” and different, they are a little too thin for my taste and take some time to get used too. Certainly not a deal breaker, but…

Overall the durability of the outsole was standard. I am able to see some wear on the lateral edge after 50+ miles of running. My biggest issue with the Cloudflow is the loss of traction on wet surfaces. I actually lost my footing while running over a small amount of wet pavement.

Meaghan: I had the same issue with the Cloudsurfer –  the lacing. I prefer wide flat laces. I can get a better fit and they don’t seem to come untied. While I would argue the thin, round laces look great, they don’t perform as well. Secondly, the criss-cross patter on the bottom of each pod wore off pretty quickly. This didn’t help with grip and traction.

On Cloudflow Conclusion

Thomas: If you are feeling bored with your current trainers and want to try something new, I would recommend the On Cloudflow. Style-wise, the shoe is way cool. The Cloudflow backs up the looks with a solid performance. This is a daily trainer that will retire as a casual shoe for sure. This shoe looks good, has a solid running platform, and is light. The price is slightly above average at $140 available at Running Warehouse now.

Meaghan: Someone asked me what my “go-to” running shoe was the other day – it’s the ON Cloudflow. When I’m not sure what shoe I want to run in, I pick these up. Why? They’ll work for just about any run, I love the look, and they’re comfortable. If you’re tired of your daily trainer, I would give these a go. They’re not giving them away ($140) but I can argue the quality. You will get plenty of miles out of these.

Check out the Cloudsurfer at Running Warehouse.

Check out the Cloudflyer at Running Warehouse.


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