Hoka Kawana

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Hoka Kawana: Review

β€œA versatile shoe for road running and gym workouts with a stable and comfortable ride.”

Overview


The Hoka Kawana is a running shoe that stands out for its versatility, catering to both road running and gym workouts. It's designed with a focus on stability and comfort, making it a suitable choice for runners who appreciate a shoe that can handle various activities.

Key Features:

  • CMEVA Midsole: This midsole material offers a responsive feel while maintaining the signature Hoka cushioning.
  • Swallowtail Heel Design: Enhances stability during landing and smooths out transitions from heel to toe-off.
  • Engineered Jacquard Mesh Upper: Provides a breathable and adaptive fit, accommodating a range of foot shapes.
  • Meta-Rocker Geometry: Aids in propelling the runner forward with a smooth ride.

The Hoka Kawana is an ideal choice for runners who prioritize a stable and comfortable ride for daily running. Its versatile design offers benefits for gym sessions, making it suitable for a variety of workouts.

According to our analysis of reviews from experts around the world, it averages a review score of 71%. This puts it in the lowest rated 10% of comparable running shoes. According to our analysis of prices across the internet, at current rates it's just above the median price of running shoes.

Verdict

The consensus on the Hoka Kawana


The Hoka Kawana has been recognized for its versatility, serving runners who transition between the road and the gym. It offers a stable ride with a comfortable and breathable upper, making it a reliable choice for daily use. The shoe's CMEVA midsole provides a responsive feel, while the swallowtail heel design and meta-rocker geometry contribute to a smooth transition and forward propulsion. However, it's important to note that the Kawana may feel heavier and less protective on longer runs, and it may not be the softest option available. Despite these considerations, the Kawana's durability and stability make it a strong contender in its category. For those seeking a multi-purpose shoe that can handle a variety of workouts, the Hoka Kawana is a solid option worth considering.

9 Hoka Kawana Pros & Cons


5 Pros

Versatile design for running and gym workouts
Stable and responsive CMEVA midsole cushioning
Breathable engineered jacquard mesh upper
Smooth transition with meta-rocker geometry
Durable outsole with increased rubber coverage

4 Cons

Heavier than some other Hoka models
Less protective cushioning for longer runs
May not be the softest option available
Grip may decrease in wet conditions

In Depth


Upper

The Hoka Kawana's upper is crafted from engineered jacquard mesh, which is not only breathable but also offers a secure and adaptive fit. This mesh is designed to accommodate different foot shapes, ensuring comfort during runs and workouts. The upper's construction, including the anatomical Achilles design, provides support without causing discomfort, making it a highlight among runners.

Midsole

The midsole of the Hoka Kawana features CMEVA foam, which is denser than traditional Hoka foams. This material offers a balance between softness and responsiveness, catering to runners who prefer a firmer ride. The midsole's design includes a swallowtail heel and meta-rocker geometry, enhancing stability and aiding in a smooth transition from landing to toe-off.

Outsole

The outsole of the Hoka Kawana is designed with increased rubber coverage compared to other Hoka models, contributing to the shoe's durability. The swallowtail heel geometry not only adds a visual appeal but also serves to absorb impact, particularly benefiting heel strikers. The outsole's design supports a variety of movements, making the Kawana suitable for both running and gym activities.

Size/fit

The Hoka Kawana offers a fit that caters to a range of runners, with a medium toe box width and height, and a midfoot volume that accommodates neutral arches. The shoe is available in standard widths and is true to size, providing a comfortable fit without the need for a break-in period.

Comfort

Comfort is a standout feature of the Hoka Kawana, with a soft step-in feel that is appreciated for both running and casual wear. The shoe's upper and interior are designed to provide a comfortable fit, with features like a padded tongue and memory foam in the heel collar enhancing the overall in-shoe experience.

Cushioning

The Hoka Kawana's cushioning is characterized by the CMEVA foam midsole, which offers a responsive yet firm feel. While the shoe may not be as soft as other Hoka models, it provides enough cushioning for daily runs and gym workouts. The cushioning is designed to be protective, but some runners may find it less suitable for longer distances.

Breathability

Breathability is a key aspect of the Hoka Kawana, with the engineered jacquard mesh upper featuring mini-holes strategically placed to promote airflow. This design ensures that the shoe can handle both cold and hot weather conditions, making it a versatile choice for runners in varying climates.

Stability

The Hoka Kawana is praised for its stability, which is enhanced by the swallowtail heel design and the shoe's wide platform. The midsole's firmness and the outsole's surface area contribute to a stable ride, making the Kawana a good option for runners who need a touch more guidance during their runs.

Durability

Durability is a strong suit of the Hoka Kawana, with its outsole featuring more rubber coverage for longevity. The shoe's new foam engineering and overall construction are designed to withstand high mileage, making it a durable choice for runners who log many miles on the road or spend time in the gym.

Grip

The grip of the Hoka Kawana's outsole is efficient in most conditions, providing confidence during runs and workouts. While it may not be the grippiest in wet conditions, it performs well enough to be considered reliable for a variety of surfaces.

Flex

Flexibility in the Hoka Kawana is moderate, with the shoe's design allowing for a degree of flex that contributes to a smooth ride. The rockered geometry and extended heel design aid in this flexibility, ensuring a comfortable experience during runs.

Who should buy the Hoka Kawana?


The Hoka Kawana is well-suited for runners seeking a shoe that can handle both road running and gym workouts. Its stable and responsive midsole makes it ideal for those who prefer a firmer ride, while the breathable upper ensures comfort during various activities. Runners who appreciate a shoe with a smooth transition and a versatile design will find value in the Kawana.

Who should not buy the Hoka Kawana?


Runners looking for an ultra-soft cushioning experience may want to consider alternatives like the Hoka Bondi 8. Those in need of a dedicated running shoe for longer distances might find the Hoka Mach 5 more suitable. Additionally, individuals with overpronation (when the foot rolls inward excessively during walking or running) issues should explore stability options such as the Hoka Gaviota 5.

Hoka Kawana: What's it good for?


The Hoka Kawana is good for daily running on roads and for gym sessions. Its stable design and responsive cushioning make it suitable for a variety of workouts, from short runs to fitness routines. The shoe's versatility and comfort make it a strong choice for runners who engage in cross-training activities.

4 Hoka Kawana FAQs


Is the Hoka Kawana suitable for long-distance running?

The Hoka Kawana is designed for daily running and gym workouts, with a responsive cushioning system that can handle various distances. However, some runners may find it less protective for longer runs due to its firmer midsole compared to other Hoka models.

How does the Hoka Kawana perform in wet conditions?

The Hoka Kawana’s outsole provides efficient grip in most conditions, but it may be less grippy on wet surfaces. Runners should exercise caution in slippery conditions, although the shoe generally offers reliable traction.

What type of arch support does the Hoka Kawana offer?

The Hoka Kawana is designed with a neutral arch support, making it suitable for runners with a neutral foot type (neither flat-footed nor high-arched). Its midsole and outsole design contribute to a stable ride, accommodating a variety of arch heights.

Can the Hoka Kawana be used for gym workouts?

Yes, the Hoka Kawana is a versatile shoe that can be used for both running and gym workouts. Its stable design and responsive cushioning make it suitable for a range of fitness activities.

Hoka Kawana alternatives

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Hoka Kawana
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Released
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Weight
Weight
303 g
M: 278 g
W: 221 g
M: 286 g
W: 255 g
M: 283 g
W: 255 g
M: 241 g
W: 213 g
M: 255 g
W: 221 g
Forefoot
Forefoot
25 mm
22 mm
32 mm
31 mm
M: 42 mm
W: 34 mm
Heel to toe drop
Heel to toe drop
5 mm
6 mm
6 mm
8 mm
4 mm
8 mm
Heel
Heel
30 mm
28 mm
38 mm
35 mm
M: 42 mm
W: 34 mm
Usages
Usages
Daily running
Daily runningDaily runningDaily runningDaily runningSpeed trainingDaily running
Brand
Brand
Hoka
SalmingBrooksNew BalanceSauconyASICS
Strike Type
Strike Type
Fore/Midfoot strike
Fore/Midfoot strikeHeel strikeFore/Midfoot strikeHeel strikeFore/Midfoot strikeHeel strikeFore/Midfoot strikeFore/Midfoot strikeHeel strike
Shoe Type
Shoe Type
BreathableLightweightMaximalist
BreathableComfortableMaximalist
BreathableComfortableLightweightMaximalistBreathableComfortableMaximalist
Breathable
Breathable
Rocker
Rocker
Orthotic friendly
Orthotic friendly
Removable insole
Removable insole
Saucony
Saucony
Techs
Techs
Vibram
New Balance Fresh Foam
Environmental Characteristics
Environmental Characteristics
Sustainable
Sustainable
Sustainable
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Hoka Kawana: what the experts say (4 reviews)

Hoka Kawana: 6 Expert video reviews

Hoka Kawana characteristics and specifications

Specificationsvs Average
Released
Jan 2021
Measurements
Weight
303 g
Heel to toe drop
5 mm
Heel
30 mm
Forefoot
25 mm

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AuthorTom Green
Tom is the founder of geerly. Based in West London, he found his passion for running in his mid-30s. He’s best at longer distances, and is a regular at the London Marathon, where he's edging closer to sub-2.40. He started geerly because he found it frustrating when shopping for running shoes spending ages trying to find the best deal in his size, and wading through verbose, waffling reviews clearly designed to appeal to search engines rather than be helpful to users. For geerly he's passionate about writing reviews that get straight to the point, and helping runners find the right gear at the best price.
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