Shoe Review: On Cloudflyer 4
Fly through your daily miles in the new On Cloudflyer 4.
Built with On’s signature CloudTec cushioning system and a wide, sturdy base, you’ll feel stable and supported in the Cloudflyer 4. A re-engineered mesh upper offers breathability while holding you in.
Fleet Feet reviewers tested the On Cloudflyer during long runs, recovery miles, neighborhood walks and gym sessions. Here’s everything you need to know.
On Cloudflyer 4
On Cloudflyer 2.0
9 oz (W), 10.6 oz (M)
7.4 oz (W), 9.8 oz (M)
Stability, moderate cushion
Stability, moderate cushion
On Cloudflyer 4 Offers Stable Support
The On Cloudflyer offers a unique running experience, thanks to On’s signature CloudTec cushioning, a mix of their proprietary Helion foam and Zero gravity foam and a responsive Speedboard.
On’s CloudTec cushioning system consists of a series of pods underfoot, called Clouds, that compress upon landing and pop up during take-off. These pods are larger in the Cloudflyer 4 than in other On running shoes to provide more stability. They’re molded from On’s Helion superfoam, a midsole foam that combines rigid and flexible elements into the same foam compound. On also uses their Zero gravity foam in the Cloudflyer 4 – their lightest foam yet. The result is a firm, engaging ride that feels snappy over both long and short distances.
“The On Cloudflyer feels well cushioned when I step in, but it also has a distinctly firm feeling,” Nate says. “Overall, it provides a really nice balance of cushioning, protection and a firm responsiveness that provides a nice pep in my step.”
Part of the responsiveness can be attributed to On’s signature Speedboard, a thermoplastic polymer plate sandwiched inside the midsole that propels you forward as you toe-off.
But the On Cloudflyer 4 offers more than just an energetic ride. A wider platform than previous versions offers more stability for your stride, making this an ideal choice for runners who have flexible arches or those who overpronate. If you’re not sure whether your arches are flexible or not, head into your local Fleet Feet for an expert one-on-one outfitting. Fleet Feet outfitters use 3D fit id® foot scanning technology to gather information about your feet and the support they need by taking precise measurements of your foot length, width and arch height.
On Cloudflyer 4 Locks Down Fit With Soft Padding
Thanks to a redesigned upper, the On Cloudflyer 4 feels plusher and softer than ever before. A re-engineered mesh upper hugs your foot, while a plush, padded tongue and heel collar hold you in place. Thick, textured laces ensure no knots will slip while you’re logging your miles.
“The upper of the On Cloudflyer 4 is definitely more plush than the previous version,” Caroline says. The tongue and the heel collar feel thicker and more padded. I also notice that the heel collar sits slightly higher up than the previous version – this gives the shoe a more secure feel.”
The mesh upper offers just enough stretch to conform to your unique foot shape without feeling too loose. While the Cloudflyer 4 offers plenty of wiggle room in the toe box, a rigid heel counter keeps you firmly locked in.
“The On Cloudflyer 4 feels like it has plenty of volume, and I’m able to cinch down the laces to dial it in just right,” Kate says. “The tongue is thicker and more comfortable than in the past. The extra padding keeps the laces from pressing into the top of my foot. I also appreciate the extra eyelet so that I can lace the shoe to make the heel more secure.”
Not only is the On Cloudflyer great for logging miles, it’s easy on the environment, too. It’s made with 35 to 40 percent recycled content, making it a sustainable choice you can feel good about.
On Cloudflyer 4 vs. On Cloudflyer 2.0
Because On doesn’t typically follow standard naming conventions, the previous model of the Cloudflyer was the 2.0. The latest version, the Cloudflyer 4, offers more midsole cushioning than before. This likely accounts for the shoe’s slight increase in weight, but reviewers didn’t notice a heavier feel while running.
The CloudTec cushioning system offers larger pods than in the previous version, ensuring stable landings and takeoffs. Reviewers appreciated the small tweaks.
“While I would still categorize this as a firm shoe, it feels softer and cushier than the Cloudflyer 2.0,” Caroline says. “In the previous version, I could feel each individual pod underfoot, whereas the latest version provides a more consistent feeling.”
“On has really improved the feel of their CloudTec cushioning and it shows in the Cloudflyer 4,” Kate says. “It still has the clean aesthetic that often attracts people to On running shoes, but now your stride will feel as smooth as it looks!”
The On Cloudflyer 4 also has a higher heel-to-toe drop than the previous version – 3 millimeters, to be exact. It is worth noting that On has changed their method of measuring heel-to-toe drop since the Cloudflyer 2.0, which could account for some of the variance.
Overall, the On Cloudflyer 4 remains true to form as a moderate stability trainer with enough cushion to feel comfortable over long distances. It offers support and structure without feeling overly rigid, along with a generous midsole that doesn’t feel too squishy. If you enjoyed the On Cloudflyer 2.0, you’ll probably like the latest version, too.
What is the On Cloudflyer 4 Best For?
The On Cloudflyer 4 is a reliable choice for the bulk of your daily training. Thanks to a generous amount of cushioning, it’s a comfortable option for long runs or long days on your feet. Because of its firm, stable platform, it’s a safe pick for cross-training and HIIT workouts as well.
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