Hoka Kawana vs Clifton: Ready to Put Extra Mile?

Hoka Kawana is a versatile running shoe that can tolerate some gym or intense work, while Clifton meets your needs on every occasion.

Hoka Clifton 8 (Best for Everyday walking & Running)

Hoka kawana (Best for intense workout)

But can Clifton 8 be worn in the gym and have some extreme activities? Professionals say to use the shoes according to their limits. So, how much limit do the Clifton shoes have?

Let’s see their features to understand how much they can tolerate our stuff with firm cushioning. As Clifton 8 is the most popular among the Clifton series, we’ll compare this shoe with Kawana.

Quick Overview of Hoka Kawana vs Clifton

The Hoka One One Kawana and the Clifton are both excellent running shoes and offer similar features. The Kawana has a more cushioned and supportive midsole, making it better for long distance runs and more challenging terrain. The Clifton is lighter and more flexible, making it better for everyday runs, short distance runs and pavement.

In this overview, we will compare the two shoes regarding cushioning, size, upper, and technology.

FeatureHoka KawanaHoka Clifton 8
Athletic StyleEveryday Running and TrainingEveryday Running and Walking
Size4, 5, 6, 6½, 7, 7½, 8, 8½, 9, 9½, 10, 10½, 11, 11½, 12, 12½, 13, 13½, 145, 6, 6½, 7, 7½, 8, 8½, 9, 9½, 10, 10½, 11, 11½, 12, 12½, 13, 13½, 14
Heel to Toe Drop5mm5mm
UpperEngineered Jacquard MeshVentilated Engineered Mesh
Durability400 Miles500 Miles
CushioningEVA FoamEVA Midsole
Durometer Test21.420

Hoka Kawana vs Clifton 8: Overall Comparision 

From the sole unit to the tongue, you’ll learn everything about these shoes regarding their performances.

Sole Unit 

With the CMEVA foam and meta rocker design, Clifton 8 won people’s hearts. Its cushioning is soft and supportive in the sole unit, which is also overly responsive. With its swallowtail heels, Clifton 8 offers efficiency in the road running for a long time. 

You’ll have 30 mm cushioning under the forefoot and 35 mm cushioning under the heels in this shoe; that’s more than enough to provide you comfort and stability. And the rocker shape of Clifton 8 will allow fluent transition while running. 

On the other hand, Kawana features high-abrasion foam, a lightweight rubber for durability. Yes, you may not get the same thick cushioning as Clifton 8, but this sole unit wins the race in durability.

This rubber sole also increases height and provides sufficient jumps to evolve your running faster. Kawana’s sole unit also increases traction, which people find smooth on any surface. 

Winner: Clifton 8 

Upper Unit

On the upper unit, Clifton 8 has ventilated engineered mesh. This upper layer allows you to run and train in the heat, as the mesh is highly breathable. You’ll also feel comfy with this shoe as the toe box fit true to size, and the tongue is soft in its stiff position. For normal-size feet, Clifton 8’s upper unit is the most perfect upper unit you can get. 

The upper part of Kawana is broad, soft, and pliable. The upper layer is made of vegan recycled material, which is exceptionally breathable and lightweight. And the gusseted tongue on the toe box will set right on top of our forefoot and provide a smoother touch unmovingly. 

Winner: Both 


Clifton 8 has some elements that make it stable. Its thickest heel, for example, doesn’t bend yet, keeps your foot centered, and the sidewalls ensure stability. 

On the other hand, Hoka Kawana is an active shoe from the manufacturer with moderate stability. This shoe is made for workouts beyond running, so you won’t find the same stability as Clifton 8. However, it’s stable enough to withstand any intense performance for years. 

Winner: Clifton 8 

Size and Fit

Clifton 8 comes in a true-to-size fit. This is an adequate size for most feet; however, if you have wider feet, it won’t work for you. 

Kawana is also true to size. Its cushioning and padded tongue also make the toe box slightly stiffer. You can order the lengthier option if your feet are wider than usual. 

Winner: Both 


Hoka Clifton 8 is considered the softest running shoe for its cushioning. Because of its highly cushioning feature, your legs will feel fresh after hours of running. Even after not including the insole, its stack height is 29 mm, equal to some high cushioning shoes. 

Hoka Kawana also goes head-to-head with a soft, supportive midsole with Clifton 8. It offers plenty of cushioning that feels relatively firm. The stack height is at the traditional level and capable enough to smoothen your ride. 

Winner: Both

Heel to Toe Drop

Both these shoes come with the same drop size. The shoes got 30 mm in forefoot height, and in the heel stack height, they are 35 mm long. This is an ideal heel-to-toe drop size for quality running shoes. 


Hoka Clifton 8 doesn’t compromise with its performance so is the Kawana. However, Hoka Kawana can be your best bet for intense performance because this shoe is made for this, while Clifton 8 is constructed for longer purposes.

You can run daily and do some other exercises with Clifton 8. Yet, if you’re thinking of hiking, gym, or other intense activities, Kawana will be appropriate because of its rubber sole. 

Overall Opinion

Because of its materials, Kawana may get broken or have some cracks in a relatively shorter time. And Clifton 8 can be worn during intense training. So, use the shoe wisely, keeping its structure in mind. 

If you have normal to strenuous activities daily, Clifton 8 is just fine. But if you’re in a professional field and want some intense training, Hoka Kawana is the shoe you can choose.

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