The Hoka Bondi X hit our shelves in late 2021 and many of our Guest Advocates had the opportunity to test out the new model. It’s a unique shoe that combines design features of max cushion, lightness, and responsiveness in a distance shoe. The carbon fiber plate gives life to a shoe providing the runner with great energy return and smooth transition throughout each foot strike.
by Megan Gorgone
Hoka created the shoe to have a neutral level of stability, it weighs in with a reading of 11 ounces (mens’ size 9). Staying true to the Hoka brand, it has a low drop of just 5-millimeters.
Hoka Bondi X Design
Breaking down the Bondi X to its exact components gives you insight into its design:
- Compression-Molded EVA (Ethylene Vinyl Acetate) is designed to give max cushion for any activity you take on with the Bondi X.
- Upper Mesh adds minimal weight, but maximum ventilation to keep your feet feeling dry and fresh
- Carbon Fiber Plate provides the shoe with maximum efficiency that you will feel mile after mile consistently
- Heel stack height of 33.5mm in the heel, Forefoot stack height of 28mm
- Early Stage Meta-Rocker allows you to feel that smooth ride with each foot strike
Guest Advocate Experience
Let’s dive into actual feedback of the shoe as shared by our trusted Guest Advocates. We have both men and women runners using it for long and short distances. We also compiled a group of users where some are already loyal to the Hoka brand and others who are more familiar with other brands.
Our Big Peach staff took the Bondi X out for many miles and came back with honest, true feedback that we compiled below for you.
Hoka Bondi X Fit & Feel Experience
Dave has worn Hoka in the past and experienced those other Hoka models to be a bit tight in the toe box. Happily, he found the toe box room in the Bondi X more spacious than those others. Prior to the Bondi X, he normally wears out the sides of his running shoes’ upper prior to the full life of the shoe. However, he also noted that the thickness of the sock really changes the fit of the shoe’s space.
A good note to our readers: When shopping for new running shoes bring with you the pair of athletic socks you typically wear. The details of your socks influence the feel and fit of the new shoe.
Don has worn many Hoka models since 2012, so of course, he was excited to experience the Bondi X! He’s an Ultra Runner having taken on such impressive races as Graveyard 100, Heartland 100, Daytona 100 (twice), Pistol 100, Houston 100 and more!! Ultra Runners do not mess around with shoe choice! Shoe choice has to be spot on to make his distance goal happen.
Don was attracted to so many aspects of the Bondi X. For instance, the generous width of the toe box, stack height, and 5mm drop. But what holds him back from fully embracing this shoe for his next 100 is the height of the tongue. It’s too short causing the tongue to slide down and the laces to ride up. He found this to be a distraction as well as discomfort. He believes if the tongue was a bit higher or had a high tongue slot for the laces to thread through it would be a great improvement.
Karen felt the shoe provided an excellent amount of cushion. She did however feel the toe box was a bit wide for her & felt some lateral movement causing blisters. She did note that she did a really long run (24 miles!!) in them! Possibly the blistering would not have occurred if her mileage was lower.
Jason’s review is intriguing living up to the assignment of being an honest Guest Advocate. He’s doesn’t like the marshmallow feel of the Hoka Bondi in general and holds the same feeling towards Hoka’s carbon shoes. What could follow from this is anyone’s guess! He shared a fair balance of likes and dislikes. Favorable was the fit, he felt it was really ‘dialed in’. He found the cushion underfoot very comfortable. The carbon plate is noticed but did not interrupt a run being uncomfortable. He did agree with Don regarding the shoe’s tongue. Jason wishes Hoka had made the tongue more padded and longer so the laces could rest more comfortably.
All our users agreed that once laced up properly, their heels felt locked in and midfoot felt secure.
Hoka Bondi X Ride
Our long-distance runner, Karen, really appreciated the easy transition from step to step. Every step flowed as she moved along her foot from mid-strike to toe-off.
Bryce is a true Hoka fan …. of all models! He is attracted to the comfort underfoot for standing and the push-off experienced in his stride. Bryce and Lucas’ feedback on the ride mirrored each other almost with exact wording. They have found other carbon plate shoes push them into an unnatural step feel. The Bondi X is able to deliver a very smooth and responsive ride with lots of cushion.
Dave shared he felt very little impact on concrete or asphalt. What a welcoming experience! The smooth ride allowed Dave to confidently push his pace clocking in some fast splits around my normal running route. The Bondi X was Dave’s long-run shoe as he trained for his half marathon. He ran distances between 7 – 13 miles and his feet felt comfortable every run. He also didn’t feel like his legs were too fatigued after runs over 10 miles.
The Bottom Line
Hoka’s Bondi X is for runners and walkers of all distances & paces. A runner can aim (and accomplish!) a PR while training and racing in this shoe. Also, this shoe is equally for the person who loves weekly runs in a shoe that provides a smooth ride and responsive energy return. As Hoka says, “It’s Time To Fly!”.
You are invited to try on and experience the Hoka Bondi X for yourself at any of our 8 Big Peach Running Co. locations. Or conveniently shop for them from your own home with our online shop: