Hoka Clifton 9 VS Asics Gel Cumulus 25: What Should I Buy?

The Hoka One One Clifton 9 and Asics Gel Cumulus 25 are both cushioned neutral daily trainers ideal for road running.

The Clifton 9 provides a soft, plush ride with a rockered profile to encourage smooth transitions. The Cumulus 25 focuses more on shock absorption and stability.

While both are cushioned shoes suitable for easy miles, the Clifton 9 excels at comfortable long distances whereas the Cumulus 25 is a bit more versatile for various speeds. The right choice depends on your foot type, running gait, and intended use. Read on for a detailed comparison of these two popular road running shoes.

Similarities And Differences Between Hoka Clifton 9 And Asics Gel Cumulus 25:

FeatureHoka One One Clifton 9Asics Gel Cumulus 25
Launched In20232023
StabilityNeutralStable
FlexibilityModerateModerate
SizingMen’s 7-15, Women’s 5-12Men’s 7-15, Women’s 5-12
Weight9.2 oz (M), 7.9 oz (W)10.1 oz (M), 8.5 oz (W)
CushionHighMaximalist
OutsoleRubberRubber
MidsoleCMEVA FoamFlytefoam Blast Foam
UpperMeshMesh
Retail Price$145$140

Feature Comparison:

Below we are going to see how the features of both models differ from the other. This will give you a clear idea on what Runner to go after.

Materials

The Clifton 9 uses a breathable engineered mesh upper with minimal overlays. The midsole is compressed EVA foam built for softness and the outsole uses durable rubber in high-abrasion areas.

Clifton 9
CLIFTON 9

Asics Gel Cumulus 25
CUMULUS 25

The Cumulus 25 also has a breathable mesh upper but with more structural overlays for support. Its midsole uses Asics’ FlyteFoam Blast foam for responsiveness and the outsole combines AHAR rubber with organic silica-rich compounds for grip and durability.

Durability

The Clifton 9 holds up well for around 300-500 miles thanks to strategically placed rubber on the outsole. The mesh upper is also smooth and resistant to wear.

The Cumulus 25 is a bit more durable, lasting for 500-600 miles. The FlyteFoam Blast midsole maintains its bounce and the outsole rubber has excellent abrasion resistance even over long distances.

Fit

The Clifton 9 fits snugly in the heel and midfoot with a more tapered toe box. Wide-footers may find it too narrow. The plush collar and tongue provide a secure ankle lockdown.

Clifton 9 Top View
CLIFTON 9 TOP VIEW

Asics Gel Cumulus 25 TOP VIEW
CUMULUS 25 TOP VIEW

In contrast, the Cumulus 25 has a wider, more accommodating fit through the forefoot and toe box. It fits true to size for most runners but the fit leans towards the wider end of the spectrum.

Stability

As a neutral shoe, the Clifton 9 does not provide any inherent stability features. However, it offers a stable platform at moderate paces. At faster speeds, the soft foam can create some instability.

The Cumulus 25 classifies as a “stability” shoe with structured overlays to support mild overpronators. The firmer midsole also improves stability compared to the Clifton 9, especially at higher speeds.

Cushioning

With its soft CMEVA foam, the Clifton 9 offers an exceptionally plush, cushioned ride. The rockered profile creates smooth transitions from heel to toe. However, the foam bottoms out at higher paces.

The Cumulus 25 has ample cushioning from the FlyteFoam Blast midsole but feels more responsive than the Clifton 9. The forefoot Gel pads also attenuate shock effectively.

Value:

The Clifton 9 costs $145, a moderate price for a daily trainer from Hoka. The plush cushioning and comfortable ride make it a worthwhile investment for easy and long mileage.

At $140, the Cumulus 25 also is an exceptional quality shoe with durable materials and versatility.

Performance Comparison

Now we are going to see how both brands differ when we compare them for their walking, running, plantar fasciitis and standing all day.

For Walking

The Clifton 9’s plush cushioning absorbs shock exceptionally well during walking and provides smooth heel-to-toe transitions. The curved sole also encourages a natural walking gait.

The Cumulus 25 has thick cushioning that keeps feet comfortable when walking. However, the straighter last is not quite as smooth and natural feeling for walking as the Clifton 9’s rocker profile.

For Running

At slower paces, the Clifton 9’s soft cushioning provides excellent shock absorption and energy return. However, the foam bottoms out during faster-paced running or racing.

The Cumulus 25 offers a responsive and energetic ride at moderate to fast speeds. The midsole is firm enough for tempo runs yet still provides cushioning for longer distances.

For Plantar Fasciitis

The Clifton 9’s plush cushioning helps absorb impact and reduce pressure on the plantar fascia. The curved shape also encourages a smooth roll-through transition.

With its firm heel counter and ample midsole cushioning, the Cumulus 25 stabilizes the foot well to alleviate plantar fasciitis pain. The Gel cushioning also effectively attenuates shock.

For Standing All Day

The Clifton 9 has superb cushioning and shock absorption to keep feet comfortable when standing for prolonged periods. The roomy toe box also avoids compression.

The Cumulus 25 has thicker cushioning under the heel which prevents fatigue during standing. The OrthoLite sockliner also enhances comfort and support when on your feet all day.

Final Verdict:

The Hoka One One Clifton 9 and the Asics Gel Cumulus 25 are both excellent neutral cushioned trainers suitable for daily runners. The right choice depends on your foot type, running needs, and preferences.

The Clifton 9 shines for recovery days, long mileage, and walking comfort. Its soft midsole absorbs shock extremely well but feels unstable at faster paces. Opt for the Clifton 9 if you prioritize cushioning.


The Cumulus 25 is the more versatile option, providing a responsive and energetic ride. It works well for daily training, mid-range speeds, and moderate distances. Choose the Cumulus 25 if you want a balanced, stable shoe.

Both shoes have breathable uppers and a comfortable fit. The Clifton 9 runs narrower while the Cumulus 25 has a wider forefoot and toe box. Consider your foot proportions when deciding between the two.

Make sure to try them on in-store if possible to determine which better matches your feet and running gait. Analyze your training routines and needs to pick the right shoe to optimize your performance and keep you running in comfort.

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