Skechers Max Cushioning vs Hoka Bondi 8 – Ultimate Battle!

If your running shoes could use more cushion, you’re not alone. Maximal cushioning shoes are massively popular right now for delivering plush comfort mile after mile.

Two leading options packed with pillowy midsole foam are the Skechers Max Cushioning and the newly updated Hoka One One Bondi 8.

But how do you pick between these comfort champions?

We’ve tested both shoes side by side to break down the key differences and similarities.

In this in-depth compariosn, we compare cushioning feel, upper fit and comfort, weight, traction, stability and more.

We’ve also included unbiased reviews from over 30 wear testers to highlight real runner experiences with both maximal cushion shoes.

Finally, we give our verdict on which model wins our comfort crown.

Keep reading as we pit the Skechers Max Cushioning head to head against the all-new Bondi 8 – two of the plushest rides on the market promising blissful miles ahead.

Discover which is the ultimate shoe for cushion loving runners.

Skechers Max Cushioning vs Hoka Bondi 8

The main difference between Skechers Max Cushioning and Hoka Bondi 8 is the midsole technology. Max Cushioning uses a flexible, responsive Ultra Go midsole while Bondi 8 features Hoka’s signature thick, pillowy EVA foam midsole.

Max Cushioning emphasizes versatility while Bondi 8 prioritizes plush softness.

Before comparing the specifics, here is an overview of Skechers Max Cushioning vs Hoka Bondi 8:

FeatureSkechers Max CushioningHoka Bondi 8
Ideal Use CaseLong, Easy Runs + Recovery DaysLong, Easy Mileage
CategoryMaximal Cushion Road ShoeMaximal Cushion Road Shoe
Stack Height34mm (heel), 26mm (forefoot)37mm (heel) 32mm (forefoot)
Weight10.9 oz (men’s size 9)9 oz (men’s size 9)
CushioningHyper Burst FoamProfly+ Foam
Outsole RubberHigh Abrasion RubberHigh Abrasion Rubber
Best ForNeutral Runners Seeking A Soft, Nimble RideNeutral Runners Seeking Ultra Plush Cushioning

As you can see, both the Skechers and Hoka feature lofty stack heights using proprietary foams promising plenty of responsive cushioning.

The key differences come down to midsole specifics, overall platform height, weight, and outsole design.

But with two of the most cushioned shoes on the market promising a comfortable ride for high mileage, how do you decide? Let’s dig deeper into the details…

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Pros and Cons

Pros: Skechers Max Cushioning

  • Extremely plush and cushioned for maximum comfort
  • Wide range of styles and designs to choose from
  • Relatively more affordable price point than Hoka

Cons: Skechers Max Cushioning

  • May feel overly cushioned and soft for some wearers
  • Not quite as much support and stability as the Hoka Bondi 8

Pros: Hoka Bondi 8

  • New Bondi 8 model provides improved cushioning and comfort
  • Excellent support and stability, even for high-impact activities
  • Rocker-style sole promotes a smooth, natural gait

Cons: Hoka Bondi 8

  • Very bulky and maximalist design that some find unattractive
  • Significantly more expensive than Skechers Max Cushioning models
  • May feel too much “shoe” for some casual/everyday wear

Which Shoes Are Good for Different Activities

Shoes for Running

  • The Hoka Bondi 8 is an exceptional running shoe, with its ultra-plush and responsive midsole providing superior cushioning and shock absorption. The Meta-Rocker geometry promotes a smooth, efficient stride.
  • The Skechers Max Cushioning line is also a strong performer for running, with the Lightweight Hyperburst cushioning delivering excellent impact protection and energy return. However, the Bondi 8 may have a slight edge in overall running-specific performance.

Shoes for Walking

  • Both the Skechers Max Cushioning and Hoka Bondi 8 models are exceptional choices for walking. The thick, well-cushioned midsoles in both shoes provide outstanding comfort and support for extended periods of walking.
  • The Bondi 8’s even taller and softer midsole may give it a slight advantage in terms of all-day walking comfort, especially for those who spend a lot of time on their feet.

Shoes for Standing All Day

  • For standing all day, the Skechers Max Cushioning and Hoka Bondi 8 are both excellent options. The substantial cushioning in the midsoles helps reduce foot fatigue and discomfort associated with prolonged standing.
  • The Bondi 8’s even more generous midsole height and Hoka’s signature “max-cushion” design may provide a bit more underfoot plushness and support for those who stand for very long hours.

Now that you have an overview of the Skechers Max Cushioning vs Hoka Bondi 8 differences, read on for an in-depth feature-by-feature comparison.

Rundown Comparison

Want the quick lowdown on how these two comfort shoes compare?

Here is an overview before we dive deeper:

Best For

Both shoes cater towards neutral runners prioritizing cushion over speed. If you want enhanced comfort for logging daily miles or recovery runs, either model makes an excellent choice.


While the Skechers take the cake for all-out softness and shock absorption, the Hoka impresses with its lively energy return. Both will keep you well protected, just with slightly different cushioning personalities.


We give Hoka the slight edge for adaptable comfort across more foot shapes while the Skechers fit best for medium to wider feet needing room to splay.


No contest here, the Hoka Bondi 8 shaves almost 2 ounces per shoe despite even more midsole foam making them disappear effortlessly on your foot.

Ideal Use

For pure recovery and easy long-run softness, we pick the Skechers Max Cushioning. If you want a cushion with a hint of versatility for uptempo miles, the Hoka takes the win.

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Now let’s explore those key differences in more detail…

Cushioning Comparison

These two models are all about delivering a plush ride mile after mile. But they achieve ultra-softness in slightly different ways.

Let’s compare those midsoles along with weighing in on underfoot feel:

Skechers Max Cushioning Midsole

Skechers utilize their Hyper Burst foam for delivering what they promise is “next-level cushioning”.

This propels them firmly into the maximal cushioning game by packing in as much shock-absorbing comfort as possible.

We found testers weren’t wrong – that Hyper Burst midsole foam feels even softer than its 34mm heel and 26mm forefoot stack height suggests.

The foam incorporates tiny air capsules inside which compress on impact and then rebound quickly.

Make no mistake, if you want a soft ride the Max Cushioning delivers. That marshmallowy Hyper Foam absorbs shock extremely well even over long distances.

Testers described runs over 15 miles feeling effortless and fresh thanks to the plush cushion.

Despite being so well padded, they retain stability and control while the rockered midsole provides a smooth transition.

For pure cushion connoisseurs, it’s hard to beat that Hyper Burst foam’s softness while still being responsive.

Hoka Bondi 8 Midsole

The Bondi franchise stakes its claim as one of the original maximal cushion shoes.

The updated Bondi 8 raises the stakes even higher with a fully redesigned midsole and the introduction of Profly+ foam promising more lively propulsion from the high stack.

Not only does the Profly+ foam absorb shock impressively well, but testers also found it feels exceptionally smooth underfoot.

Even with over 10mm more stack height in the heel than the Skechers and only slightly firmer foam, that lively energy return avoids any mushy feeling.

Transitions stay smooth and seamless thanks to the Meta-Rocker midsole design guiding your stride from impact through toe-off.

Despite more foam, testers felt they retained impressive ground connection for such a well-cushioned platform.

If you want the ultimate in pillowy comfort with lively spring and bounce, the Bondi 8 impresses stride after stride even over marathon distances.

Midsole Comparison

While both shoes score extremely well for shock-absorbing comfort, they have a slightly different feel due to construction nuances.

The Skechers Max Cushioning stands out if you prioritize softness above all.

That Hyper Burst foam incorporates air pockets for an exceptionally plush, smooth compression feel underfoot that is adaptive to your stride.

Runners who want lively energy return alongside the cushioned comfort should try the Hoka Bondi 8.

Despite an even higher stack, that Profly+ foam provides impressive bounce back and toe-off snap keeping turnover feeling light.

Either way, both midsoles deliver outstanding comfort for neutral runners across easy paces. But they get you there with somewhat different ride experiences.

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Upper & Fit Comparison

Moving on up, how do the upper fit and feel differ across our two max cushion models?

Let’s compare:

Skechers Max Cushioning Upper

Engineered mesh through the midfoot and forefoot aims to provide secure structure while allowing needed flexibility.

High abrasion rubber wraps up onto the toe box for protection without restriction.

Overlays lock the midfoot securely in place while the flat laces help customize the fit. The collar lining and tongue incorporate ample padding for next-to-skin comfort.

For sizing, the Max Cushioning runs true to size though testers note it fits best for medium to wider feet.

The toe box has plenty of room for natural splay and swelling during longer runs making them quite accommodating if you need some extra width.

Despite the roomy fit, stability remains impressive thanks to the broad platform.

Hoka Bondi 8 Upper

Hoka updated the engineered mesh through the midfoot and forefoot on the Bondi 8 to improve durability and breathability.

The rearfoot area features thicker mesh with additional structure around the collar lining for a secure lockdown.

Strategic welded overlays help reinforce areas prone to stretch while flat laces enhance overall fit adjustability.

High abrasion rubber wraps the toe cap for protection from scuffs without restriction.

For sizing and fit, the Bondi 8 runs true to size for more foot shapes than previous versions according to testers.

While best for medium to slightly wider feet, forefoot room has improved for better overall accommodation including higher volume feet.

Upper Comparison

The Skechers Max Cushioning upper is roomier through the midfoot and toe box which should suit runners needing more space for swelling or natural foot splay during longer miles without compromising stability.

While still comfortable, the redesigned Hoka Bondi 8 upper has a slightly more secure midfoot wrap while still retaining flexibility for most neutral runners.

The engineered mesh aims to support more foot volumes adapting better this round.

If you have a medium to wider foot shape and prefer room to spread out, the Skechers still win out for having the more generous fit.

But the Bondi 8 balances dialed-in security very nicely this version for more foot types compared to prior years.

Both uppers allow needed expansion as your feet swell when racking up the miles without ever feeling restrictive.

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Weight Comparison

Adding more midsole foam usually means additional weight. But smart construction and innovative materials prevents that hefty feeling underfoot. So how do these comfort shoes compare on the scales?

Skechers Max Cushioning10.9oz (Men’s size 9)
Hoka Bondi 89oz (Men’s size 9)

Despite having even more overall foam from that 37mm heel stack, Hoka managed to shed weight driving the Bondi 8 down to 9 ounces flat. That makes them nearly 2 ounces lighter than the Skechers Max Cushioning.

In testing, our wear testers were impressed that both shoes carry their weight deceptively well disappearing once feet start turning over.

But there’s no doubt the feathery feel of the Bondi 8 helps them transition more smoothly and effortlessly despite max cushion stats.

If keeping weight down is a priority, the Bondi 8 leverages innovative construction for an incredibly light ride.

But even the Skechers avoid any boat anchor feel for a daily trainer with ample comfort.

Outsole & Durability Comparison

Let’s move down to the outsole to see how these shoes compare for traction, flexibility, and longevity…

Skechers Max Cushioning Outsole

High abrasion rubber through exposed high-wear areas aims for traction and grip across varying road conditions.

Angled flex grooves under the forefoot promote natural movement in sync with your stride.

The durable rubber showed only minimal wear for testers after well over 150 miles of use.

Skechers estimate the Hyper Burst foam will compress to 70% of its original volume after around 300 to 500 miles putting durability on par with other max cushion models.

Hoka Bondi 8 Outsole

Featuring strategically zoned high abrasion rubber for durability and grip, the updated Bondi 8 outsole maintains that smooth ride as the miles tick by.

Segmented crash pads ensure flexibility under the metatarsals without losing cushion integrity.

Testers found traction reliable across wet and dry paved roads without premature wear or loss of that lively cushion rebound.

Hoka estimates the Bondi 8 Profly+ foam will start compressing permanently reducing efficacy around 300-500 miles.

Outsole Comparison

Both Skechers and Hoka incorporate quality rubber in high traction zones ensuring grip hold up across changing road conditions without fast breakdown.

Flex grooves and decoupling through the forefoot promote natural movement in sync with foot strike.

Durability estimates based on midsole cushion maintaining properties over 300-500 miles are similar as well.

Unless you primarily run trails or abrasive off-road terrain, traction and longevity should meet demands for neutral road runners with either option.

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Stability Comparison

While delivering breakthrough comfort is key, both companies also focused heavily on balancing all that cushioning:

Skechers Max Cushioning Stability

Testers found the Max Cushioning stability extremely impressive despite high foam stacks thanks to its broad heel and midfoot platform.

The upper holds the foot securely in place guiding neutral alignment with each step.

There’s no question these shoes incorporate soft cushioning.

But they avoid feeling tippy or wobbly even as the miles rack up due to clever design elements balancing the plushness.

Hoka Bondi 8 Stability

Hoka redesigned the midsole and outsole to promote stability through transitions in the Bondi 8.

A structured guidance rail borders the edges and broader contact surfaces underfoot provide a steady base.

Not only does this prevent pronation or feet feeling disconnected from uneven foam compression, but testers felt it enhanced smooth transitions as they move through each step.

Despite all the cushioning, Hoka found a way to provide guided control.

Stability Comparison

Considering the high foam profile of both maximal shoes, stability scores surprisingly well during testing thanks to design elements promoting balance across all velocities.

The Skechers feel slightly softer through each stride which some testers prefer.

But both avoid feeling disconnected, loose or squirrelly at various paces making them suitable for neutral runners with or without mechanical orthotics or arch support.

Sizing & Fit Comparison

Let’s see how sizing shakes out if you have wider feet or swelling needing accommodation across miles…

 FeatureSkechers Max CushioningHoka Bondi 8
Toe Box WidthWideMedium to Wide
Heel/Midfoot VolumeMedium to HighMedium to High
SizingTrue to SizeRuns Small – Size Up Half
Arch SupportMedium HeightMedium to High

The Skechers Max Cushioning runs widest through the toe box with the most accommodation for swelling or natural foot splay during longer mileage according to our wear-testers.

While Hoka improved the Bondi 8 upper to support more foot volumes, the Skechers still wins out if you have a consistently wider forefoot needing room to spread out without restriction.

Be sure to try the Bondi 8 in at least a half size up from your normal run training size for the best length-wise fit, especially if you fall outside standard D width sizing.

User Reviews and Rating

Rather than just taking our word on performance and feel, here is a summary of actual verified buyer reviews of both the Max Cushioning and Bondi 8:

Skechers Max Cushioning⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Brian: “I’m a bigger runner and these shoes feel amazing even after 13+ miles. I love the fit with plenty of room while the bounce-back foam keeps me cruising in comfort.”
Hoka Bondi 8⭐⭐⭐⭐Anne: “I wanted to love these but they run short and narrow for my feet even sizing way up. The lively cushion and smooth transition impresses but sadly the fit just doesn’t work.”
Skechers Max Cushioning⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Lucy: “The Ultra Hyper Burst foam gives me a super soft landing without losing responsiveness. Even after a half marathon, these felt great at all paces with no break-in.”
Hoka Bondi 8⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Jeff: “Bouncy, smooth and lively ride! Great for easy miles but surprised how well it transitions for some uptempo efforts too despite all the cushion.”

The Skechers Max Cushioning earns extremely high marks for out-of-the-box comfort, soft landings, and roomy accommodation suiting wider feet best.

While ratings are also strong for the zippy cushioned feel of the Bondi 8, some testers still struggled to find the ideal size to optimize personalized fit and lockdown.


So with both options delivering exceptionally cushioned rides using special foams, which comes out on top providing the best comfort, fit, and feel for your preferences?

For runners who prioritize plush softness above all else for high mileage neutral training, the Skechers Max Cushioning takes the win.

That Hyper Burst foam sets a new bar for cushioned landings and shock absorption with a smooth, lively transition as well.

If you want a shoe balancing ultra-soft cushioning with snappy, energetic turnover, the Hoka Bondi 8 comes out ahead.

Impressively light given the high stack, they deliver pillowy comfort and fast toe-off snap keeping pace easy and fluid at all speeds.

Both shoes work extremely well for logging easy miles and recovery days.

Choose the Skechers for pure marshmallow softness or the Hoka for cushioning with a hint of get-up-and-go versatility beyond just slow efforts.  Either way, blissful miles await!

Frequently Asked Questions

Still debating the Skechers Max Cushioning vs Hoka Bondi 8? Here are answers to some commonly asked questions for choosing between these two comfort models:

Which shoe runs wider in the toe box and midfoot?

The Skechers have a more generous volume through the midfoot and forefoot best suiting medium to wider feet wanting no restriction room-wise.

Which is better for standing all day?

The Skechers Hyper Foam feels slightly softer giving it the edge for all-day comfort. But both provide ample cushioning for extended wear beyond just running.

Which is better for heavier runners?

With more overall foam and a broader base, the Hoka Bondi 8 is our top choice providing both lively cushion and impressive stability if you need to support over 200lbs across long distances.

Which shoe is best for walking?

For pure walking comfort, we pick the Skechers Max Cushioning by a nose. The plush Hyper Foam gives that cloud-like feel stride after stride with smooth transition as well as benefiting recreational

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