A quest for the perfect running sensation
From a revolutionary idea a Swiss running shoe has evolved that is still amazing the sporting scene. The On provides a new running sensation, and one that puts fun firmly centre-stage.
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-times 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.
Cupboardfuls 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, four years later, the shoe is available at over 1,200 specialist running stores in more than 25 countries and has won international design and technology awards. In addition to its European headquarters in Zurich, On has now opened a second head office in the USA in Portland, Oregon.
Because you are unique, On is breaking the norm.
How many times have you been told to fit in, to adhere to the norm, to continue how things have been done in the past, to buy into the one best way? After half a century of running axioms that have failed to produce a significant drop in running injuries, On suggests to simply run how 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 research.1
On Core Belief 1
From focus on correction to focus on experience and comfort...
Running should be fun and not an exercise in self-control. Instead of correcting your movement, On lets you run how you are meant to run: The result is unmatched comfort and a more fun running experience. How it works? On’s patented CloudTec® cushioning cleverly takes the first heavy blow off the street and then lets you transition naturally to the forefoot, where the Cloud elements become firm for a stable stance and a powerful push-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 Core Belief 2
From one best way to run to billions of ways to run...
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. They can act in unison or individually cushion your landing – however you need it. In fact, they have no predefined rolling line but empower each runner to run how he is meant to run. This means freedom for your feet, putting you back in control.
On Core Belief 3
From a look at the ankle to a look at the whole body...
Your running shoe should not stop you when landing but 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 towards the midfoot stance, naturally centered under your body. Upon landing, your are immediately ready for takeoff – good running form in action.
On Core Belief 4
From a diagnosis for life to an evolution over time...
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 but 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 Cloudster, finish in the On Cloudracer.
 Nigg BM. (2001). The role of impact forces and foot pronation: A new paradigm. Clinical Journal of Sports Medicine 11 (1) 2-9.