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Hoka One One Stinson 7 review

9 expert score
0 user's score
As editorial policy, we do not accept free samples. We purchased this pair at Running Warehouse with our own money.
Review written on 03rd April by Katherine Takai Long Distance Runner, former Sprinter.
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Hoka One One Stinson 7 Verdict

The HOKA Stinson 7 provides an exceptionally stable, reliable, highly cushioned ride for road to non-technical trails. For everyday training or longer efforts where the terrain varies between roads, grass, and gravel, the Stinson 7 goes the distance in plush comfort.

The pros

  • Exceptionally stable on road and non-technical terrain
  • Plush cushioning
  • High stack protects from underfoot hazards

The cons

  • Subpar agility in tight spaces and on rocks
  • Outsole can get slippery on rock when wet
  • Break-in period may be required before optimal comfort


Rating breakdown

Comfort
9.0
Build quality
9.0
Upper
8.0
Sole unit
8.0
Landing
9.0
Transition
8.0
Toe-off
6.0
Traction
6.0
Durability
9.0
Value / Price
8.0

Facts / Specs

Model
Stinson 7
Previous model
Type
Weight
12.7 oz (360 g)
MSRP
$170.00

Heel
45 mm.
Toe
40 mm.
Heel drop
5 mm.
Carbon plate
No plate

Size/Fit

Sizing
True to size
Heel fit
Normal
Midfoot fit
Normal
Toebox fit
Normal

Cushioning & ride

Type of cushioning
Plush
Amount of cushioning
Highly cushioned
Stability
Very stable
Flexibility
Rigid

Trail specs

Rockplate
Not present
Traction
Average Traction
Water resitance
Adequate

Best for these distances

Road-to-trail
Max cushion  
Trail racing
Technical

Best for these terrains

Moderate trails  
Technical trails
Rocky areas
Muddy areas
Through creeks and streams  
Through snowy or icy sections  
Dirt trails  
Paved trails  
Through grassy sections  

Who should buy the Hoka One One Stinson 7 ?

For a road-to-trail runner or non-technical trail runner or hiker looking for a stable, maximalist shoe to go the distance in comfort.

Who should not buy the Hoka One One Stinson 7 ?

Trail runners who primarily run on technical, uneven terrain with tight rocks where a lot of agility is required or speed is the focus.

Hoka One One Stinson 7 Introduction

Picture of HOKA Stinson 7

The Stinson 7 is HOKA’s maximum-cushioned trail runner with a heel stack of 40mm and 35mm forefoot and the “all-terrain” sibling to the Hoka Bondi 8.

It is designed to provide stability and comfort when you’re running, hiking, or walking on varied surfaces, including roads, grass, gravel, or singletrack dirt. At $170 per pair, the price is comparable to other maximalist trail runners, like the Fresh Foam X More Trail v3, Altra Olympus, and Brooks Caldera 6.

At 10.8 oz (Women’s) and 12.9 oz. (Men’s), the Stinson 7 is slightly heavier than its predecessor by about a full ounce. The updated version also has a stack height about 2mm higher.

While it’s on the heavier side for comparable maximalist trail shoes, it also has the highest stack compared to its competitors. The result is increased plushness and comfort over mileage without stability compromised.

The Stinson 7’s stability is optimized through the use of new H-frame™ and Active Foot Frame™ technology. H-frame™ is new technology from Hoka that was introduced on Hoka’s everyday stability road runner, the Gaviota 5. Application of this technology into a maximum cushioning road to trail shoe creates the ability to adventure further with confidence.

Hoka One One Stinson 7 Impressions

Picture of HOKA Stinson 7

As mentioned in my first impression, the shoes were extremely high (and wide) stack, but still stylish and lightweight for how bulky they appeared. In my first run on them, I was impressed by the stability on road and non-technical terrain.

I tried these out as everyday shoes on a long flight to Europe and I felt pressure in the toebox after several hours wearing them.
On trails in the Dolomites, the Stinson 7s were sufficient for hiking and running on hard packed dirt; but they were clunky in tight, rockier sections.

There were rare but alarming ankle rolls. On warm, dry Colorado front-range trails, the traction wasn’t as sticky as I’d have liked when climbing on dusty rocks. The lack of Vibram outsole (or a sticky substitute) was a deficiency in both the Stinson 6 and this model, despite the multidirectional lugs.

On smooth trail and road, the Stinson 7 was unbeatable in terms of reliability and comfort. The high stack didn’t slow you down very much. While these wouldn’t be my first choice for speedwork or a fast race, these would be suitable for longer races or as a daily trainer for longer distances or those who need more cushion and stability.

Hoka One One Stinson 7 Protection

Picture of HOKA Stinson 7

The almost absurdly high stack of the Stinson 7 provides excellent protection from underfoot hazards and shallow puddles (and creeks and streams), as you’re literally a few inches off the ground. There is no rock plate, as it would be completely unnecessary.

The durable rubber toe cap provides additional protection from trail hazards to make these even more bomb-proof. A partially gusseted tongue provides an adequate barrier from debris entering the shoe.

Hoka One One Stinson 7 Durability

Picture of HOKA Stinson 7


After over 100 miles in the Stinson 7, the most significant wear is on the outsides of the outsole and midsole. They’ve been a bit torn up from contact with abrasive, rocky terrain. However, this wear does not compromise the shoe in any way, as there is just so much midsole and outsole to chip away at.

The bottom line is that the Hoka Stinson 7 is a durable workhorse that can stand up to long wears and many miles. So long as you want to wear these, they will take you there; so I would feel fully confident wearing them for a long, ultra distance race.

Hoka One One Stinson 7 Responsiveness & speed

Picture of HOKA Stinson 7

The Stinson 7 is exceptionally reliable on the road and non-technical terrain. While I wouldn’t recommend this shoe for speedwork, they don’t feel too cumbersome to log road miles.

The cushioning and H-Frame stabilizing technology create an unmatched feeling of security on even terrain; but the energy return is limited compared to other trail runners. This is a shoe that I would wear for long training days where speed is not the goal or a long race with variable terrain that doesn’t get too technical.

The multi-directional lugs are designed to enhance traction. The outsole is sufficiently grippy if the terrain is not too steep or rocky, for example on dirt or gravel paths. However, the sole composition does make the outsole slippery in cold, wet conditions.

Hoka One One Stinson 7 Comfort and fit

Picture of HOKA Stinson 7

The Hoka Stinson 7 fit is true to size. While roomy, it was easy to lock down. The engineered jacquard mesh upper is sufficiently light and breathable in hot weather, yet plush enough to provide support and warmth when needed..

While the toe box is ample, after long efforts or wearing the shoes for extended periods, there was some pressure and rubbing on my big toe. This was more problematic in the first few times trialing these shoes and became more comfortable after a break-in period.

The plush heel cup provides soft cushioning and support all the way around the ankle. The back of the heel cup extends up along the achilles, which felt slightly awkward to me and created hot spots when wearing short socks.

Hoka One One Stinson 7 Conclusions

Picture of HOKA Stinson 7

The Hoka Stinson 7 is the most maximalist running shoe on the market and thrives in that niche.

While the bulkiness of these out of the box (and after putting them on) may seem excessive, the stable, plush experience of running in them is truly unique.

The protection, durability, and stability on road to trail terrain are unmatched by any other running shoe that I’ve ever tried. For logging miles from the house to the trail and back again in all seasons, they inspire confidence.

I’m looking forward to trying these out in snowy, wintry conditions, as I expect the large footprint to provide stability and some height above the snow.

The Stinson 7 does have its limitations on the types of terrain that it works well on. As mentioned, narrow, rocky, and potentially slick terrain, cause issues with agility and responsiveness. The high stack can become a liability if the terrain is too uneven, and the outsole material isn’t as grippy as its competitors or other Hoka trail shoes.

A break-in period may be required before these shoes feel as comfortable as they can be. While adequately spacious, the toe box initially created pressure points after wearing the Stinson 7s for a long period of time. Fortunately, the fit gradually improved and can now be worn for as long as needed.

While I wouldn’t recommend these for a road race or technical trail running, the Stinson 7’s versatility runs the gamut of uses from reliable ultra-distance training and racing, hiking, to being comfortably and casually on-trend.

How does the Stinson 7 compare?

Brooks Caldera 6
Hoka One One Stinson 7
Asics Trabuco Max 2
Expert score
9
9
9
User score
Best price
Retail price
US$149.95
US$169.95
US$149.95
Shoe type
Weight
11.1 oz
12.7 oz
10.8 oz
Heel Drop
6 mm
5 mm
5 mm
Recommended for
Moderate trails, rocky areas, muddy areas, through creeks and streams, dirt trails, paved trails, through grassy sections
Moderate trails, through creeks and streams, through snowy or icy sections, dirt trails, paved trails, through grassy sections
Moderate trails, technical trails, rocky areas, muddy areas, dirt trails, paved trails, through grassy sections
Cushioning type
balanced
plush
responsive
Cushioning amount
Highly cushioned
Highly cushioned
Highly cushioned
Flexibility
medium
rigid
medium
Stability
very stable
very stable
some stability
Sizing
true to size
true to size
true to size

Why you can trust us

As editorial policy, we do not accept free samples from companies.
We purchased this pair of Hoka One One at Running Warehouse  with our own money.

This page contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. Read more about our policy.
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Reviewed by Katherine

This review was written by Katherine Takai on 03rd April.
Katherine Takai is a consultant and endurance sport enthusiast in constant pursuit of new running adventures and the optimal shoes to take her there. Over 15 years ago, she was a sprinter who turned long distance event runner. Ultimately, she found her greatest passion in trail running and has spent the past five years running around the mountains of Colorado and her current home near the Tetons in Idaho.

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