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The Hoka Bondi X: A Review and Lab Test

CEO Tinh Phung
The Hoka Bondi X is turning heads with its latest iteration that features a carbon plate. But does this upgrade truly make sense in a max cushioned recovery shoe? And is it worth the price...

Hoka Bondi X Pieces

The Hoka Bondi X is turning heads with its latest iteration that features a carbon plate. But does this upgrade truly make sense in a max cushioned recovery shoe? And is it worth the price tag? In this article, we will explore the Bondi X in detail, including a lab test and expert analysis.

Who Should Consider the Hoka Bondi X?

If you're looking for a super padded and plush recovery shoe that also provides stability and propulsion with its carbon plate, the Bondi X is worth considering. Despite its price, many runners appreciate the comfort and cutting-edge technology it offers.

Who Should Think Twice?

On the other hand, if you prefer a lightweight recovery shoe, the Brooks Aurora-BL might be a better fit. Additionally, if you prioritize luxury and softness underfoot, the Nike Invincible Run offers a bouncier experience at a slightly lower cost. Lastly, if you don't see the need for a carbon plate, the standard Hoka Bondi provides a similar ride at a lower price point.

Hoka Bondi X Front Angle

Minor Issues with the Bondi X

The Bondi X measures a bit narrow in the forefoot and heel compared to the average shoe. However, the upper stretches nicely, and most users find it comfortable. Some users have reported heel slip issues, which can be attributed to the generous padding. The tongue design could also be improved, as it tends to be a bit short. Despite these minor issues, the Bondi X offers ample room in the toe box.

Comfort is Key

When it comes to comfort, the Bondi X excels. It features a thick removable insole and plenty of foam cushioning. While some runners have described other Hoka models as "marshmallowy," the Bondi X provides a slightly firmer ride. However, the foam density might not be to everyone's liking. One standout feature is the breathable and minimally padded tongue, adding to the overall comfort.

Hoka Bondi X Side

The Ride of the Bondi X

The Bondi X boasts an impressive stack height and a drop that gives you a feeling of height while running. Despite its tall stature, the shoe maintains stability with its wide platform. The carbon plate further enhances stability and provides a bit of propulsion. However, this shoe is still primarily designed for recovery and not for racing.

Weight and Durability

At 10.5 ounces, the Bondi X is relatively heavy for a max cushioned recovery shoe. While the carbon plate helps make it feel lighter, the shoe's size is noticeable. As for durability, the thin rubber outsole might wear down quickly, but it offers excellent grip on a variety of surfaces.

Breathability and Reflectivity

The Bondi X features a breathable upper with minimal overlays, allowing heat to escape easily. Its design is an improvement over the standard Bondi. However, keep in mind that this shoe lacks reflective elements for nighttime running.

Hoka Bondi X Outsole Heel

Laces and Conclusion

One minor issue with the Bondi X is that the laces tend to come loose easily. While this can be frustrating, it is not a deal-breaker. In conclusion, the Bondi X is a comfortable and technologically advanced recovery shoe. However, the addition of a carbon plate might not be necessary for everyone, making the standard Bondi a more budget-friendly option.

For more technical specifications and in-depth analysis, refer to the table below:

Specs Bondi X Average
Weight (g) 298 266
Drop (mm) 5.6 8.5
Flexibility of the shoe (N) 69.4 38.8
Upper Thickness - Tongue (mm) 3.8 5.5
Width Upper - Forefoot (mm) 95.3 98.4
Width Upper - Heel (mm) 78.8 75.4
Longitudinal flexibility (1-5 scale) 5 3.2
Torsional flexibility (1-5 scale) 5 3.4
Outsole thickness (Heel) (mm) 2.3 3.5
Lugs Depth (mm) N/A 3.0
Durometer Outsole Heel (HC) 77.5 80.5

In summary, the Bondi X offers exceptional comfort and stability with its carbon plate. However, considering the price and the fact that the carbon plate is not essential for a recovery shoe, it's worth exploring other options within the Hoka lineup.