This shoe is “running on clouds with the volume turned up” where cushion and speed collide.
The Swiss brand, while newer to the market, has been building a following over the last few years and catching up to some of the other big box brands.
On Running offers plush, luxurious running products that runners rave over. They’ve equally snuck into the medical and professional market for their sleek athleisure shoe designs.
The On Cloud Monster is their newest release and it has been a star of the 2022 spring shoe releases.
It was created to have enhanced cushioning, speed, and spring for runners who like to log miles and miles.
And let’s just say it definitely has some ‘Monster‘ cushioning.
But, along with its cushion, it offers high-tech innovations, a lightweight frame, and an energy-efficient springboard to keep every stride balanced and smooth.
This shoe is going to be a top 2022 model that you will not want to miss out on!
So, keep reading to find out the nitty-gritty specs of this stellar shoe and our gear reviewer’s opinion on fit, feel and ride.
|Plush Cushion||Slippery laces|
|Energy Efficient||Low tread|
|Spring & Rebound||High Price|
|Reduced Carbon Footprint|
Monster CloudTec and Specs
On Running is a brand that does not skimp on high-quality designs and technology when it comes to shoes.
The brand prides itself on being a leader in innovation, offering sleek designs, and ultimate comfort for both daily lifestyle shoes and running models.
The On Cloud Monster is the shoe that every On Running follower has been waiting for because its cushion finally is matching that of other brands.
On incorporated their patented CloudTec material to the maximal level in this model.
CloudTec in a nutshell is the cushion system that has multilayer pods as the basis for cushioning.
The idea? To feel like running on plush clouds with every step.
They also claim that this foam is able to reduce energy loads and heart rate during a run because of its ultimate efficiency (more on the CloudTec later!)
Drop Height and Weight
The On Cloud Monster has a 6mm drop height, which is a bread and butter height for most people.
6mm gives a low enough drop for speed and a minimalist feel while also giving enough height for your more traditional runner.
The weight for men is about 9.7 oz (275g) and for women is about 8.11 oz (230g).
Overall, the drop and weight are still pretty standard compared to other models, but the innovative technology and specifics are what really make this shoe shine!
A midsole like none other: Innovative Cushion
Want to know where On put all their high-tech innovation?
Search no more. The midsole of the On Cloud Monster is packed with On’s most energy-efficient springboard and maximum foam for the smoothest and most comfortable ride.
The midsole uses On SpeedBoard – a full-length Pebax liquid injected TPU plastic with additional elastomers.
Whoof, that was a lot of big words, but basically, this means that it is super energy efficient. But let’s break it down a bit.
The speed board is like an individualized energy board for optimal distribution of forces for each user.
What gives this model the edge over other shoes is the speed board being full length.
It gently matches the pressure points under the foot and propels the forefoot into an ideal position for push-off.
The Pebax foam and Cloudtec pods help to absorb shock under the runner’s foot, taking the load of the ground reaction forces off the joints, bones, and muscles, believed to allow the runner to feel energized longer and reducing chance of injury.
The added elastomers or plastic springs are designed to create a responsive feel within the pods of the shoe.
As will be explained below, these two features combined help keep the shoe from feeling stiff and make it more forgiving on a runner’s body.
In addition to the speed board, the On Cloud Monster uses On’s Helion Foam which is made of EVA and Olefin Block CoPolymers (OBC’s for short).
This is what On calls their super foam and they added a “Monster” amount of it in this model.
Helion foam is both rigid and plush which is quite the dichotomy to master, but somehow On has done it.
The On Cloud Monster offers a thick layer of helion foam which added a little weight to this model but in return added a more responsive feel but equally like running on airy clouds under the foot.
Overall, the combination of the foam manages to combine comfort and efficiency.
These features make the On Cloud Monster a forgiving shoe, especially if your stride is not necessarily picture-perfect, which let’s be real, most of us do not have.
But, this makes the shoe versatile for many runners and is a sweet spot between high cushion and performance.
Impacts of Their Cushioning On Heart Rate
Something unique about the On Cloud Monster is the claim by the company that the energy responsiveness and cushioning of this shoe can actually decrease the heart rate of runners.
This proved to be true for some of our testers!
For example, my heart rate is typically about 160 BPM (beats per minute) in most of my easy runs and consistent in most of the shoes I run in.
However, in the On Cloud Monster, tested on a 30 min interval my heart rate was about 2-3 BPM slower and was closer to 157 BPM.
Now, this is a hard claim to prove because so many factors truly play into heart rate on that day.
I could have been more recovered, temperatures could impact it, or the tightness of my strap could have skewed the data.
But, all that said, On tested on thousands of users and published this claim with their release, so there likely is some truth behind it.
And, with as much technology in the shoe that makes it more energy efficient, there’s lots of reason to believe it.
The upper and outsole
In addition to the unbeatable qualities of the midsole, the upper and outsole both offer some high-tech additions as well.
The On Cloud Monster upper is light, breathable, and durable.
It offers a double-layer mesh, the honeycomb structure keeps the foot in place while the top layer keeps debris out but the air in.
The honeycomb mesh is what keeps the structure supportive and holds the foot in a stable position through the stride.
This design keeps the foot from sliding around but also gives enough room and flexibility for the foot to move naturally.
Because this is a double layer, the foot can also breathe without catching rocks and sand. It almost acts like an air filter for the foot.
Additionally, the mesh is very durable and will hold up on the roads or trails.
The eyelets are detached from the shoe so some people may not prefer this feature, however, it does allow for a customized fit, enabling some places to be tighter or looser as needed.
One feature that is sub-par on the upper is the slippery laces.
They are 100% recycled polyester which reduces the carbon footprint, but that does make them a bit slicker.
It was not a critical feature for me, but some may prefer to purchase a separate set of laces.
Other recycled features on the upper include, the vamp, heel, and tongue along with the 100% polyester collar and 100% recycled TPU sock-liner.
Unlike other On shoes, this model does not feature the classic outsole “Y” design and instead keeps a straight line through the center.
It has a minimalist oval tread pattern which allows the user to feel the ground connection under their feet.
The cushioning in the mid-sole still offsets the feeling of the ground, but the minimal sole keeps a good connection to allow a stable feel while running.
It is about 3mm thick and is highly concentrated in the high-impact areas like the forefoot and heel where most people contact the ground.
Two downsides are that On still notoriously catches loose rocks and other items in the separated outsole and this sole can become a bit slick on greenways, bridges, and trails.
Other than that, this outsole is pretty standard for On.
The durability of the outsole is moderate depending on your gait pattern. If you are typically harder on shoes this model may not last as long as some others, but if you have a pretty standard gait pattern then it has normal durability (350-400miles).
The Fit and Feel
The fit of this model is pretty versatile.
It does not have any upper designs that constrict the foot and the mesh allows for some flexibility in width.
It is on the narrow side of the width spectrum but can still fit a standard foot.
The volume is fantastic though, and if you have a higher profile foot or arch then this is a great model and will keep your toes from going numb.
Some other reviewers have mentioned that the On Cloud Monster fits a little long so you may find you need to go down half a size from your current model.
However, in On I wear a 7.5 in women’s across the board and this was no exception, so I recommend basing it on how close you are fitting in your current model.
If you are in-between sizes stay the same, but if you have a good bit of room already, go down.
I was a little skeptical of the On Cloud Monster at first, but once I started running in these I become very satisfied quickly!
In the past, On shoes had given me issues with my Achilles Tendon, and I had to stop wearing them for running and stick with using them as athleisure shoes or for my work in the physical therapy clinic.
But this model has really been a star for me. On fixed some of their heel structures so I no longer have that issue, at least in this model.
This model truly feels like running on clouds or pillows.
It is super plush but also super springy with a nice balance of soft and ground contact.
It does have a decent rocker feel while running and the shoe propels you through the stride with clear energy efficiency with each toe-off.
But, while walking in these the rocker is hardly noticeable, which is really a nice feature and keeps the foot feeling stable.
With that, if you are a strong forefoot striker this may be a feature to keep in mind, as it may force your toes too close to the front and not be as comfortable.
However, as a midfoot striker, I can feel the ground just enough to find the proper placement of my foot on the ground but there is still plenty of cushioning to offset some forces from the road and concrete.
Additionally, I really love the look of this shoe. It does have a decent stack to it but maintains a sleek profile, but unlike the chunkier look of Hokas.
Overall, in my opinion, this is a phenomenal model and is a sure win for the growing On collection and community.
I am truly excited to see how more runners like this model and what updates On will make in the next season!
To wrap up…
The On Cloud Monster is a neutral, performance, and long-distance trainer made with exceptional cushion and spring.
On used their highest levels of innovation for this max-cushion shoe from the speed board, CloudTec pods, and their Helion EVA foam.
This model is high-energy return, with a smooth and springy ride made to keep you going through as many miles as you can stand.
It has moderate durability, a flexible double-layer upper, and a reduced carbon footprint.
For all that is in the shoe, the price is pretty standard with other models in the category and the technology is worth the price.
On finally developed a model that offers extreme cushioning with speed and spring and this model will be one that people love.
If you want to check out our On Clouflyer review check it out here. For more top-rated marathon shoes, check out below!