With its revolutionary idea, the Swiss running shoe On has taken the global running scene with speed. It’s not just a love of running that former top athlete Olivier Bernhard and his friends David Allemann and Caspar Coppetti share. They’re all also dedicated to developing a perfect product. And this is what has turned a revolutionary idea into a new running shoe that began by amazing the sporting scene and has since helped numerous top athletes to new personal bests at World Championship events.
After retiring from professional competition, three-time World Duathlon Champion and multiple Ironman winner Olivier Bernhard devoted himself to finding a running shoe that would give him the perfect running sensation. In doing so, he crossed paths with a like- minded Swiss engineer who had an idea for a new kind of running shoe. And it was this ideal symbiosis of running experience and engineering expertise that allowed this original idea to be steadily refined over the following years. Dozens of prototypes were developed, but the basic concept – cushioned landing, firm take-off – remained paramount throughout. It was this unique running sensation that convinced Caspar Coppetti and David Allemann to come aboard too. Together with Bernhard, they formally established the On company in Zurich in January 2010 to develop a product range fully engineered in Switzerland using the latest technology.
After that, things started to move swiftly. In February, the prototypes won the ISPO BrandNew Award, one of the most important prizes for innovation in sports. Test runners were enthusiastic and spoke of running on clouds. In July 2010, the first running stores had the On on their shelves. Today, 9 years later, On products are available at 5,000 premium running stores in more than 50 countries and have won numerous international innovation and design awards. Headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, On has local offices in the USA, Japan, Germany, Australia, China, and Brazil.
Soft landings, explosive take-offs: On is the first running shoe that provides cushioning only when you need it. So you can have the best of both worlds: cushioned landing, firm take-off. Vertical + horizontal impact absorption: On’s patented CloudTec® system cushions cleverly, so when you hit the ground, the flexible “Cloud” elements cushion both vertical and horizontal forces and allow you to glide softly into your stride by responding to the individual movement of your foot. Upon landing, the “Clouds” lock firmly to provide a solid foundation for a powerful push-off. Flexible Speedboard fosters efficient rolling gait cycle: the Speedboard which is integrated into the midsole helps the runner smoothly transition from heel to toe. Unleash the energy of your feet and maximize your performance.
After half a century of running axioms that have failed to produce a significant drop in running injuries, On suggests simply running the way you are meant to run. Forget about motion control, minimalism and maximalism, or the proper way to land or to lift for that matter. Instead, let your individual running personality shine. What feels best to you is best for you. Interestingly, this is also the conclusion of the latest biomechanical research1.
Running should be fun and not an exercise in self- control. Instead of correcting your movement, On lets you run the way you are meant to run. The result is unmatched comfort and a more enjoyable running experience. How does it work? On’s patented CloudTec® cushioning cleverly takes the first heavy blow off the street and then lets you transition naturally to the fore- foot, where the Cloud elements become firm for a stable stance and an explosive take-off. In other words: The On provides cushioning only when you need it and helps you delay fatigue, keep up your individual stride, and not give in to the street.
On shoes do not passively control your running motion with a rigid sole. Instead, a whole team of Cloud elements at the sole of the On shoe actively reacts to your individual running motion. The elements in the team can act in unison or individually cushion your landing – however you need it. In fact, they have no predefined rolling line, but rather empower each runner to run the way he or she is meant to run. This means freedom for your feet, putting you back in control.
Your running shoe should not stop you when landing, but rather transform your motion into forward momentum. We take a holistic look at the running movement of your whole body, not just your feet. This is why On puts the landing sweet spot toward the midfoot stance, naturally centered under your body. Upon landing, you are immediately ready for take off – good running form in action.
Running is a sport, not an illness. And as in other sports, you can train away your weakness to become a star performer. Flat feet and other deficiencies are not static but can be improved through training. Infants, for example, typically have flat feet and develop an arch through natural training in childhood. Neither is your individual running motion a diagnosis for life – it can evolve with training. On provides a range of footwear that adapts to your individual stage of running and supports your training to propel you to the next level. Start with the On Cloud, finish in the On Cloudflash.