Hoka One One Cavu Reviewed for Quality
Hoka One One was founded in 2009 in Annecy, France. They popped onto the scene creating oversized outsoles, “maximalist” shoes, at a time when minimalist shoes were most popular. They added an extra cushion that runners fell in love with instantly. Now they are based in Goleta, California. Hoka One One is still producing high quality, lightweight, cushioned shoes for all types of runners. Recently, they introduced the Hoka One One Cavu to the masses.
The direct successor to the Clayton 2, the Cavu is lighter, has less drop, and moves far away from the flashy neons associated with running shoes. A shoe that is built for speed with a seamless engineered mesh upper, the Cavu also has moisture-wicking textile linings and a ProFly midsole that features a softer heel and a firmer forefoot. At full speed, this ride is smooth and responsive, encouraging a faster pace and a better race time.
Keep reading our in-depth Hoka One One Cavu review to find out if it is worth the investment.
- Mesh upper is soft and slipper-like
- Minimal drop at 4mm
- RMAT outsole grips roads firmly
- Lightweight, neutral cushion gives a smooth, fast ride
- Dual density, ProFly midsole for softer heel & firmer forefoot increases speed
- Not enough traction for diverse terrain
- Not a slower tempo shoe, built for speed
- No additional stabilizing or supportive features, more of a natural run experience
Combining the RMAT with the ProFly dual-density midsole is key with the Cavu as the softer heel and the firmer forefoot work well together to create an optimal shoe for speed runs and training and the thinner rubber accommodates the speed more so than a thicker, heavier gripping design.
There is no toe bumper stiffening, pinching or pressure points at all, just a continuation of the mesh upper surrounding the entire foot. This model has distanced itself from the neons of current popularity and has embraced simple colors and designs on the mesh upper.
Reds, blues, black and white are the main options, but they have a streamlined, clean look with the removal of the wild colors and overlays from previous designs.
The new dual-density ProFly EVA foam midsole features a softer heel and a firmer forefoot. It gives added protection and propulsion at the same time. For runners who heel strike, this reduces the shock to the joints. For all runners, the firmer forefoot makes for a faster toe off and makes it easier to maintain speed.
The softness of the upper is near excessive. Because it is so soft and comfortable, runners don’t believe the Cavu will stand up to the wear and tear they will be administering. The shock is, they do. While the upper is lightweight and airy, it provides a hidden line of support in the engineering of the material. The lycra comfort fits bootie hugs the foot carefully, and the moisture-wicking textiles reduce moisture, leaving the foot relaxed and comfortable.
Each shoe also features the brand name, Hoka, on the outside and a full lace enclosure to accommodate all fits. The outsole is two-toned as it has the RMAT outsole only on the parts of the foot that connect with the pavement when running, creating a solid white stripe across the bottom as well. The strategically placed mesh creates an attractive design on the outside as well as the inside, keeping the breathability at a maximum.
The upper is well made and, although light, is soundly solidly constructed. With no additional material in the toe box and no toe bumper stiffening, the forefoot flexes with the natural flex of the foot, reducing frays and imprints that would generally occur with a stiffer material.
The upper on the Cavu offers its own form of protection. With the extensively breathable engineered mesh, the foot will be less likely to sweat and cause slippage. To further reduce that possibility, the Cavu also has moisture-wicking textiles to keep the foot cool and dry.
The ProFly EVA foam of the midsole maintains the comfort and support from beneath. The heel does have a softer design, but the firmness of the forefoot enables the foot to keep the fast speed that the Cavu is known for, without the fatigue of overwork.
• Engineered mesh upper is soft and lightweight with a slipper-like feel
• Decoupled heel and interrupted outsole make transitions smoother
• Built for speed
• Uncluttered design without wild colors and overlay patterns
In the follow up to the Clayton 2, the Hoka One One Cavu features a redesigned midsole, an engineered upper and an interrupted outsole. These are not standard for the industry, but they are the right idea for Hoka. They have created a durable, comfortable, lightweight shoe that helps make runners faster and enables them to train the way they want to. Fast. And with speed comes the smallest of limitations in terrain but that is the shoe. It is designed for a fast, debris-free route to increase the speed of the runner. In that case, this shoe is doing what it is meant to do.
Reducing the thickness of the RMAT rubber reduced weight. Adding the ProFly EVA foam to the insole increased speed. Engineering the upper with a mesh design and lycra bootie increased breathability and kept the weight down. Removing any additional material on the toe box and toe area reduced any rub and increased the lifespan of the shoe.
All of these tweaks and adjustments are paying off for Hoka. They have developed an outstanding shoe that will be making appearances in marathons, half marathons and 5k’s worldwide, and with much deserved congratulations.
The Hoka One One Cavu has quality and makes a great impression. Hoka should continue to make adjustments as, every time they do, a new advancement is introduced to the industry that drives technology and expectations to an all new level.