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Hoka Arahi 5 Review Analysis (2021)

Hoka Arahi 5

Last update: December 2022

The Hoka Arahi 5 is a very good stability running shoe that comes with firm but comfortable cushioning and an improved upper.

The Consensus

9.2Overall score
The daily stability trainer that delivers comfort with an improved upper and smooth ride
The Hoka Arahi 5 is a support running shoe geared for daily workouts. This latest model comes with a significantly improved fit that hugs feet and delivers optimal support. According to runners, the difference between the 4 and the 5 is huge—and there are several reasons why.

First, let’s start with the shoe’s midsole, which lends itself to a stable yet supremely comfortable ride. While the Arahi 4 and 5 feature comparable midsoles, runners noted that the 5 offers more padding with the same drop and stack height. The ride is still on the firm side and the bounce minimal, though the Meta-Rocker Geometry allows smooth transitions.

The new and improved upper design—arguably the shoe’s selling point—is fast-drying, supportive, and secure. Compared with the Arahi 4, which runners complained was a bit too voluminous, the 5 feels like a more streamlined experience. What’s more, the targeted fit doesn’t make the shoe more narrow—it’s still suitable for runners with wider feet. Finally, the shoe’s outsole is built for durability and performs in wet weather and steep slopes alike. While the A5 is a road running shoe, it’s suitable for easy dirt tracks.

Overall, the Arahi 5 may be a great daily trainer for runners who value distance over speed. Because it’s a stability shoe, it’s not designed for races or speed work. However, the potential for a faster pace still exists!

Ultimately, Hoka hit it right with this new version. The 5 is a practical, reliable, and attractive road shoe with long-term potential—built to accommodate distance and stability.
Comfort
9.5
Durability
9
Value for money
9
Design
9
PROS
  • Good comfort
  • Sturdy model
  • Light stability feature (suitable for neutral runners)
  • New upper that changes the game in terms of foot lockdown
  • Rather lightweight for a stability model
CONS
  • Firm cushioning that may not be to everyone’s liking

Technologies

Outsole

  • The rubberized EVA foam combines the soft quality of EVA with the resilience of rubber for optimal comfort on the road.

Midsole

  • The EVA J-Frame is a dense foam compound featured in the midsole from the medial side to the heel. It aims to guide your stride to avoid overpronation.

Upper

  • The Hoka One One Arahi 5’s upper is an engineered mesh that promotes a secure and comfortable foot lockdown while facilitating a good breeze, especially in the summer.

Facts

Hoka Arahi 5 outsole rubberized eva

Technical Specs

TerrainRoad
Pronation typeOverpronation
Drop5 mm
Heel stack height29 mm
Forefoot stack height24 mm
Weight (men)275 g/9.7 oz
Weight (women)221 g/7.8 oz
FeaturesHeavyweight runners
FitWide feet
Release year2021

Cushioning

Softness (1-5)2 – Firm
Bounce (1-5)2 – Low

Technologies

OutsoleRubberized EVA foam
MidsoleEVA J-Frame
UpperEngineered Mesh

Use

SpeedSlow, moderate
DistanceMid, long, 10k, half marathon, marathon
WorkoutDaily runs

Comparisons – Hoka Arahi 5 vs.:

Hoka Arahi 5

Very similar on paper, especially in terms of weight and stack height, the Arahi 5 has the merit of correcting a major problem of version 4: the upper. Thus, the A5 lockdown has a better fit without tightening the foot lockdown or making the shoe too narrow.

Hoka Clifton 7

The Clifton has the same stack height and the same heel-to-toe drop but is lighter. Indeed, it’s not a stability shoe for overpronation and therefore has no correction to guide the stride. Its cushioning is also softer and slightly more springy.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Does the Hoka One One Arahi 5 fit true to size?

Yes, this shoe fits true to size. Indeed, athletes who ran with this model confirmed that it fit regularly. Therefore, you can purchase your usual size for running shoes. Having said that, if this your very first pair of Hoka One One shoes, it’s recommended to test them in a shop to make sure you find the most comfortable size for your feet.

I have overpronation. Are these shoes recommended for me?

Yes, this model is a stability shoe so it’s especially aimed at preventing your foot from rolling outwards excessively (pronation). Anyhow, it’s important to remind you that there’s no proof that stability running shoes are more effective than neutral shoes to prevent injury. Accordingly, we recommend that you select your shoes according to their comfort, as it’s the most important criterion.

Is this a shoe for heavyweight runners (more than 187 lbs/85 kg)?

Yes, these shoes are fine regardless of your weight. Indeed, the Hoka One One Arahi 5 has a heel stack height of 29 mm with a firm midsole, which is enough to support most runners, so you can use it regardless of how much you weigh.

Is this model a good choice to run a marathon?

Yes, there should be no concern. Let’s remember that the most important factor in determining what shoes to run with during your marathon race should be your personal preference. If you can run without any problems at your marathon pace over mid to long distances with your shoes, it should be all good.

Kevin Le Gall

Kevin Le Gall

Kevin is the founder and editor of Runner's Lab. He started running in 2015 and completed his first marathon in Rotterdam in 2016. He's also worked for Under Armour from 2016 to 2018 and helped launch their running collection in Europe (in particular the HOVR shoes). In addition, Kevin is a 300-hour certified yoga teacher (Sivananda) and uses this experience to run more mindfully with a focus on well-being over performance.

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