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Tech Profile: The all-new Cloudboom Echo

Your fastest marathon just got even faster – and more comfortable. The carbon-fiber-infused Cloudboom Echo combines explosive speed with maximum comfort. Two years in the making, it blends extensive feedback from our fastest runners with lab results for a high-tech, high speed shoe. Let's get technical.

 

The all-new Cloudboom Echo is your weapon of choice when you want to take your marathons to the next level while crushing both rivals and personal records along the way. We've joined forces with some of our fastest athletes, like Tadesse Abraham, Rachel Cliff, Chris Thompson and Jake Riley (plus many more), to make this shoe as fast, efficient and comfortable as possible. 

 

Shaped for speed

 

The Cloudboom Echo is designed with one goal in mind – maximum speed, efficiency and comfort. The only thing that wasn't fast about this shoe was the process of making it. We tested over one hundred prototypes to make it the speed machine it is now. A constant process of going back and forth: designing, testing, re-designing – all based on elite athlete feedback.

 

At the core of every On shoe is the Speedboard®. The Cloudboom Echo's is carbon-infused and has more curve. It's stiffer than ever before, for more performance than ever before. With every stride, the extreme curvature of the Speedboard results in more high-power forward propulsion.  

 

 

Responsive comfort 

 

Compared to the Speedboard of its predecessor, the Cloudboom, the Cloudboom Echo's is much further away from the ground thanks to increased forefoot cushioning. This provides more comfort, which is essential when running longer distances like a half marathon or full marathon. But don't let that make you think it will hold you back. 

 

In fact, the opposite is true as the combination of the Speedboard and increased cushioning helps activate the teeter-totter effect when in contact with the ground while running. Energy produced in landings moves anteriorly (or forwards) during the second half of the contact phase – in the direction of the front of the Speedboard®. This way, the ground reaction force results in an upward reaction force at the heel. What does this mean? More forward propulsion and more explosive speed.

 

"If designing a racing shoe was all about speed, the Speedboard would be made of 100% carbon," explains Edouard Coyon, Head of Footwear Product Management at On. "But that would be the least comfortable shoe – which is the opposite of what athletes running long distances want. So we focused on creating the optimal balance. We're very happy with the result." 

  

 

A Cloud sandwich 

 

Merging velocity with comfort, the Cloudboom Echo's visible Speedboard sits between two layers of CloudTec®, for surprisingly soft landings for such a fast shoe. As well as below it, we've enhanced forefoot cushioning above the Speedboard. In the midfoot and heel, the cushioning is placed underneath, making the midsole the engine of this powerhouse shoe. 

 

This configuration of Clouds, combined with the amount of foam used, enhances the spoon-like shape of the Speedboard. It's also why we were able to design the Cloudboom Echo with more and larger Clouds than the Cloudboom, which is why it feels noticeably more comfortable. 

  

The Clouds below the Speedboard are bigger and wider than on other On models, so they absorb vertical and horizontal forces faster. They take the impact out of the asphalt while simultaneously activating the teeter-totter effect mentioned above. 

 

In addition, the materials used in the lower CloudTec layer allow the Clouds to collapse faster, which puts runners immediately back into a forward position rather than languishing with their weight at the heel of the shoe.

 

 

Testing progress 

 

Multiple tests with Cloudboom Echo prototypes have shown that the Clouds in the forefoot add comfort and reduce oxygen consumption. More importantly, they make the shoe 2.5% more efficient compared to shoes without Clouds. Why? CloudTec helps the forefoot to compress quicker. And once they're compressed, runners have a firm platform to push off from with explosive speed. Details matter. 

 

Hold-tight traction

 

Running a marathon is about giving everything you got, and you should expect no less from your racing shoes. The last thing you want to worry about on race day is how your shoes will perform. Traction is often overlooked but given it's the part of the shoe that comes into contact with the road, it's essential to performance. 

 

That's why the Cloudboom Echo has a high-performance rubber compound in carefully engineered geometry. The idea is to maximize the ground area of the shoe for maximum efficiency – even in wet conditions as the new pattern also dispels water faster than ever before. After all, no marathon ever comes with good weather guaranteed.

 

 

Reinforced. Recycled. 

 

The recycled and engineered mesh upper combines ventilation with reinforcements exactly where needed, making them perfect for sharp turns during city runs. Made from 100% recycled polyester, the upper delivers 100% performance. Every element was considered when building the shoe. That's why we prioritized using lighter materials. Less weight, more speed – right? 

 

"If you look at the stats and numbers, the Cloudboom Echo is slightly bigger and 'more shoe' than its predecessor but at the same time it's lighter too – which was one of our key goals," – Edouard Coyon

 

 

Great for marathons. And triathlons. 

 

The Cloudboom Echo is our super shoe. It was designed to make running marathons even faster. But it has a very small yet very important design detail that makes it ideal for triathletes too. The thin tongue can be easily rolled into the laces, while the heel is even softer and more flexible. Ideal for slipping on and off in a rush. 

 

"It's the perfect shoe prep for triathletes, literally jumping off their bikes and into their running shoes," Edouard points out.

 

"It's the widest opening we ever designed on a shoe, which means it is already super-fast and efficient when you put it on and before you ran even one step."

 

The Cloudboom Echo
The ultralight shoe with a carbon Speedboard® for your fastest marathons and road races. Built beside elite athletes.
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