Our verdict

The Bondi SR is one of Hoka's bestselling models. We found it fantastic when we spent long periods with the pair on our feet. And if you often deal with wet floors in your work environment, we confirmed that its slip-resistant (SR) outsole and water-resistant upper are irreplaceable. As long as you love the bulk of this monster shoe, its benefits are plenty.

Pros

  • Comfort is off-the-charts
  • Extra thick cushioning for all-day support
  • Smooth heel-to-toe transitions
  • Alleviates foot discomfort (podiatrist approved)
  • Stable for a neutral shoe
  • Slip-resistant outsole
  • Superior material quality
  • Water-resistant leather upper
  • Accommodating toebox

Cons

  • Heavy and bulky
  • Not breathable

Audience verdict

85
Good!
  • Top 23% most popular walking shoes

Who should buy

Based on its design features and lab performance, we believe that the Hoka Bondi SR is perfect for the following:

  • individuals in need of a practical yet cozy and good-looking shoe for work or casual wear
  • employees who often deal with wet floors at work (hospitals, restaurants, kitchens, etc.)
  • people with plantar fasciitis and other foot issues that call for podiatrist-approved footwear

Hoka Bondi SR review

Breathability

With the shoe's water-resistant upper made of genuine leather, we didn't expect much breathability in the first place.

We used a smoke-pumping machine to assess how much air passes through the Bondi SR's upper. As you can see, it all gets trapped inside the shoe's sealed leather upper. Thus, the shoe gets the lowest breathability score of 1 out of 5.

As you can also see from our transparency test below, there is not a single perforation on the shoe's upper to let the heat out.

We even tried looking for some ventilation holes with a microscope but to no avail. This shoe is practically air-tight.

Hoka Bondi SR microscope

Test results
Bondi SR 1
Average 2.7
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
1
Breathability
5

Durability

Toebox durability

On the upside, the shoe's leather upper is phenomenally wear-resistant. It is by far the most durable upper on a walking shoe that we've seen!

Applying a Dremel to the shoe's toebox for a whole 12 seconds, we didn't even get halfway through the material! It's going to take forever for this kind of upper to wear out. We believe that it justifies the shoe's above-average price.

To provide some perspective on the Bondi SR's durability, we put it next to another Hoka shoe. We applied the same force and speed of the Dremel to both shoes.

Hoka Bondi SR vs Hoka Kawana toebox durability

Test results
Bondi SR 5
Average 3.1
Compared to 22 walking shoes
Number of shoes
1
Toebox durability
5

Heel padding durability

Unfortunately, the heel padding didn't do so well in our Dremel test, earning the lowest score of 1 out of 5.

Apparently, the brand went for softness at the expense of durability. Because we have seen some really sturdy heel linings. Look at the one from the Adidas Ultraboost for example. Doesn't even look like it was drilled!

Hoka Bondi SR vs Adidas Ultraboost Light heel padding

Test results
Bondi SR 1
Average 2.1
Compared to 21 walking shoes
Number of shoes
1
Heel padding durability
5

Outsole hardness

As a slip-resistant outsole, it is supposed to be on the soft side to provide a strong bite on smooth surfaces. Pressing our durometer against the rubber gave a reading of 73.1 HC, which is 6% softer than the average.

The downside is that the shoe has to give up some of its durability to achieve that level of grip.

Hoka Bondi SR Outsole hardness
Test results
Bondi SR 73.1 HC
Average 75.7 HC
We use an average of four tests. The photo shows one of those tests.
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
50.1 HC
Outsole hardness
92.0 HC

Outsole durability

Drilling the rubber with our Dremel felt like cutting butter with a knife. Within 22 seconds, the tool went right through the rubber down to the midsole.

We turned to a tread gauge to measure the depth of the emerged dent and it was a whopping 2.48 mm deep! For comparison, the average is only 1 mm.

Hoka Bondi SR outsole durability measurement

This is the trade-off that the Hoka Bondi SR makes to achieve its high level of slip resistance.

Hoka Bondi SR outsole durability test

Test results
Bondi SR 2.5 mm
Average 1.6 mm
Compared to 21 walking shoes
Number of shoes
0.0 mm
Outsole wear
2.0 mm

Outsole thickness

Good thing the shoe's rubber layer is a thick one. Our caliper shows 5.9 mm which is twice thicker than the average of walking shoes!

Hoka Bondi SR Outsole thickness
Test results
Bondi SR 5.9 mm
Average 2.6 mm
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
0.0 mm
Outsole thickness
5.9 mm

Weight

The Bondi SR is a pretty big boy.

It tips the scale at 14.3 oz (404g) in a men's US size 9 which is a whole 4.7 oz (132g) heavier than walking shoes on average!

However, we believe that it is a reasonable weight given how much cushioning and support this Hoka shoe provides.

Test results
Bondi SR 14.25 oz (404g)
Average 9.81 oz (278g)
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
6.17 oz (175g)
Weight
14.25 oz (404g)

Cushioning

Heel stack

The cushioning unit is simply HUGE in this walking shoe from Hoka.

Using a caliper, we measured the stack height at 39.4 mm in the heel. That's a crazy 8 mm thicker than average!

Impact protection and all-day support are guaranteed with that amount of foam. Even if you spend a 12-hour shift on your feet!

Hoka Bondi SR Heel stack
Test results
Bondi SR 39.4 mm
Average 32.7 mm
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
11.2 mm
Heel stack
45.7 mm

Forefoot stack

In the forefoot, the Bondi SR is as thick as many other walking shoes are in their heels.

Our caliper shows 31.2 mm of thickness under the toes. We felt as if the shoe's cushioning was bottomless.

Hoka Bondi SR Forefoot stack
Test results
Bondi SR 31.2 mm
Average 21.9 mm
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
5.5 mm
Forefoot stack
31.2 mm

Drop

Based on the stack measurements above, we found that the heel-to-toe drop of the Hoka Bondi SR is 8.2 mm. This is a little taller than the officially stated 6 mm.

But you won't even notice the difference while floating atop this cloud-like cushion.

In addition, 8-10 mm is a pretty standard heel elevation for a walking shoe. It provides even more landing comfort for the heels as opposed to the lower-drop shoes that feel more barefoot-like.

Hoka Bondi SR Drop
Test results
Bondi SR 8.2 mm
Average 10.9 mm
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
5.7 mm
Drop
21.4 mm

Midsole softness

Note: a low durometer measurement equals a soft material, whereas a high measurement means it's firm.

On its official product page, Hoka categorizes the Bondi SR's cushioning as plush. We can subscribe to that statement after measuring the shoe's softness with a durometer.

We got a reading of 20.4 HA which is 40% softer than the average of walking shoes.

Hoka Bondi SR Midsole softness

On the foot, we did experience a very pleasant squish all throughout the midsole.

The Hoka Bondi SR is actually built on the basis of the Hoka Bondi running shoe, inheriting all of its plushy goodness.

Hoka-Bondi-8-heavy-weight

Test results
Bondi SR 20.4 HA
Average 25.2 HA
We use an average of four tests. The photo shows one of those tests.
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
7.8 HA
Midsole softness (soft to firm)
32.9 HA
Note: a low durometer measurement equals a soft material, whereas a high measurement means it's firm.

Difference in midsole softness in cold

What's really amazing about the Bondi SR's cushioning is that it doesn't turn into a brick when exposed to low temperatures.

After sitting in our freezer for 20 minutes, the foam firmed up to 29 HA which is still 34% softer compared to how firm the other walking shoes got.

So, if you are planning to make it your fall/winter shoe, you can still enjoy the soft underfoot experience.

Hoka Bondi SR Difference in midsole softness in cold
Test results
Bondi SR 42.3%
Average 32.2%
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
0%
Difference in midsole softness in cold
100%

Insole thickness

The insole is also padded rather well in the Bondi SR. We measured its thickness at 4.9 mm, which is typical for walking shoes.

Hoka Bondi SR Insole thickness
Test results
Bondi SR 4.9 mm
Average 6.2 mm
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
3.5 mm
Insole thickness
16.9 mm

Meta-Rocker

The shoe's midsole has a curvy shape on purpose. As part of the brand's proprietary Early Stage Meta-Rocker design, it is meant to provide smooth transitions from heels to toes.

This design really worked wonders as it felt like we were actually rockered into the next step.

Stability

Lateral stability test

The Hoka Bondi SR is meant for neutral pronation as well as supination (excessive outward ankle rolling). But there is so much support woven into every aspect of the shoe that we think it could also heel at home for mild overpronation (inward ankle rolling).

Torsional rigidity

First of all, the Bondi SR is incredibly stiff. So much so that we couldn't even twist it in our manual test. There is no give whatsoever, earning the shoe the highest score for torsional rigidity: 5 out of 5.

This is what makes this walking shoe feel so stable in the first place.

Test results
Bondi SR 5
Average 2.8
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
1
Torsional rigidity
5

Heel counter stiffness

Another important stability component is the heel counter stiffness. Having pushed and squeezed it in every way, we rated its stiffness as 4 out of 5 (nearly the stiffest!).

Paired with the generously padded collar and sturdy leather upper, it creates a very cozy yet secure clutch around the ankle.

This made the Hoka Bondi SR feel almost like a stability shoe!

Test results
Bondi SR 4
Average 2.3
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
1
Heel counter stiffness
5

Midsole width in the forefoot

The footprint of the Hoka Bondi SR looks like that of a Bigfoot. No kidding!

This is the most massively wide platform we've seen in our lab.

In the widest part of the forefoot, our caliper shows 124.1 mm. This is more than a centimeter wider than the average!

Hoka Bondi SR Midsole width in the forefoot
Test results
Bondi SR 124.1 mm
Average 111.7 mm
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
98.8 mm
Midsole width in the forefoot
124.1 mm

Midsole width in the heel

The Bondi SR is just as astonishingly wide in the widest part of the heel - 102.2 mm. That is 15 mm wider than average!

Wow... With such a wide landing area, it doesn't get any more surefooted. This is another reason this Hoka shoe feels so safe in the workplace.

In addition, we can recommend this Bondi to seniors who are likely to appreciate plenty of stability underfoot.

Hoka Bondi SR Midsole width in the heel
Test results
Bondi SR 102.2 mm
Average 90.2 mm
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
75.6 mm
Midsole width in the heel
104.0 mm

Flexibility

Stiffness

Bending the foot is just not happening in the Bondi SR. It is nearly impossible to flex this monster sole.

In our lab, it took 52.7N of force to bend the shoe to a 90-degree angle. A whole 143% more than the average!

This Hoka shoe makes you forget about normal foot gait. It makes you feel like you have small cushy boats attached to your feet.

Test results
Bondi SR 52.7N
Average 20.9N
We use an average of four tests. The video shows one of those tests.
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
1.1N
Stiffness
52.7N

Grip / Traction

The grip is insanely good in the Hoka Bondi SR. This walking shoe totally lives up to the marketing around it (SR stands for slip-resistant).

Kitchens, hospitals, warehouses - this shoe nails it when you have to speed through wet tiles or any other slick surfaces.

Hoka Bondi SR outsole

Size and fit

Toebox width at the widest part

The Hoka Bondi SR has a marvelously accommodating fit! Whether you have wide feet, or bunions, or simply enjoy extra space for splaying your toes, this shoe has it all covered.

In the widest part of the toebox, we measured the shoe's width at 100.3 mm, 2.6 mm wider than average.

Hoka Bondi SR Toebox width at the widest part
Test results
Bondi SR 100.3 mm
Average 99.1 mm
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
89.5 mm
Toebox width at the widest part
110.9 mm

Toebox width at the big toe

But the most surprising part is the toebox width at the big-toe mark. The caliper shows 81.2 mm which is 2.7 mm wider than average.

Hoka Bondi SR Toebox width at the big toe
Test results
Bondi SR 81.2 mm
Average 78.3 mm
Compared to 23 walking shoes
Number of shoes
73.7 mm
Toebox width at the big toe
94.3 mm

Tongue: gusset type

The shoe's tongue has no gussets on the sides which is probably reasonable given how little breathability there is already.

But we didn't experience any issues with tongue shifting or bunching thanks to its massive padding.

Hoka Bondi SR Tongue: gusset type
Test results
Bondi SR None

Comfort

Tongue padding

Everything about the Hoka Bondi SR has to be superlative.

Now it's the tongue padding. Measuring its thickness with a caliper, we found it to be 11.1 mm thick! This is twice as big as the average tongue.

Hoka Bondi SR Tongue padding

Maximizing comfort is the shoe's Memory Foam collar padding. It made us feel as if our feet got sucked into some eternal "hugge."

Test results
Bondi SR 11.1 mm
Average 5.0 mm
Compared to 28 walking shoes
Number of shoes
0.3 mm
Tongue padding
11.5 mm

Heel tab

A handy finger loop at the back helps you slide right into the shoe's comfortland much faster.

Hoka Bondi SR Heel tab
Test results
Bondi SR Finger loop

Removable insole

This Hoka shoe comes with a removable insole in case you need to step up the game with a custom orthotic.

Hoka Bondi SR Removable insole
Test results
Bondi SR Yes

Misc

Approved by podiatrists

The Hoka Bondi SR received a Seal of Acceptance from the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA), which acknowledges that it is beneficial to foot health.

Hoka Bondi SR walk