HOKA Arahi 7 Review: Another Winner, Well Mostly…

What the HOKA? Learn how the Arahi 7 strikes a balance between support, comfort and versatility - I'm looking at you daily runners and walkers!


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The key specifications

  • Price: $145 from hoka.com
  • Sizing and fit: True to size in length with a tight medium fit and a lacing system that helps them cinch down to narrow feet too. A ‘wide‘ version is also available!
  • Weight: 9.5 oz (269g) for a size US(M)9 (my pair) – that’s pretty lightweight for a stability shoe, for those who are not versed in shoe weights.
  • Drop: 5mm (whoop!)
  • Toe box width: medium/narrow – a ‘wide’ version is available.
  • Stability: Full stability and support, this is one of the key design benefits.
  • Cushioning: Balanced, HOKA speak for medium cushioning.
  • Best for: Daily training, supportive runs, walking
  • The competition: On Cloudrunner, Brooks Adrenaline GTS 23, Nike Infinity RN4

Review highlights / key terms

  • J-Frame Technology is a key feature of the HOKA Arahi 7, providing stability and support by guiding the foot through its natural gait cycle without rigid materials, enhancing running biomechanics.
  • The Arahi 7 shines for its mix of support, comfort, and versatility, making it a strong candidate for daily training and walking, praised for its “Glide” experience and balanced cushioning.
  • The shoe’s narrow fit may not suit those with wider feet, and the potential addition of a more pronounced rocker geometry could improve stride transition and efficiency.

Hey guys, I’m Alastair, and in this HOKA Arahi 7 review, I’m excited to dive into HOKAs latest support running shoe, one that’s quickly gaining traction among runners looking for that ideal mix of support and comfort.

HOKA Arahi 7 is great for daily training runs where support is important, it's also great for walking with too.
HOKA Arahi 7 is great for daily training runs where support is important, it’s also great for walking with too.

And after running (and going on some dog walks in them) I can see why it has gained so much traction; this versatile support shoe has it all, whether you want them for walking or running, all at a great price point.

Drawing from my own runs and the wealth of feedback from our community, I’ll walk you through the Arahi 7’s innovative features, what makes it shine, areas where it could potentially up its game, and my final verdict on whether it deserves a spot in your running shoe rotation.

Known for its “Glide” – a nod to the smooth, supportive ride it offers – this could very well become your new favorite for daily trainer if you’re in the market for a supportive running shoe to help improve your form, and make running a little easier on your joints.

The Arahi 7 is also a solid pick for walkers who value comfort and support on their daily jaunts, and accordingly, it ranks very highly in our Best HOKA Shoes For Walking Buyer’s Guide.

Alright, that’s enough of an introduction, let’s get right into the nitty-gritty and share what it’s like to run in the HOKA Arahi 7, after all that’s what you’re here for right?!

HOKA Arahi 7 Video Review on YouTube

Let’s start with everything that’s good about the Arahi 7

First off, from the moment you take the HOKA Arahi 7 out of the box, you’re in for a treat, starting with the lightweight construction and sleek silhouette (especially the versatile colorway that I have, a black upper and white midsole).

Then comes the immediate ‘sigh-of-relief’ comfort and snug fit of the Arahi 7, which is something that HOKA fans have come to expect, myself included.

Don’t miss these HOKA Buying Guides:

The sensation of slipping your feet into these shoes is a feature that’s become a hallmark of HOKA’s Best Running Shoe lineup.

It’s that “ready to go” feeling from the get-go that sets the tone for a great run, and this is always important when it’s your first of many runs in a new pair of running shoes – after all they’re going to be your companion through thick and thin, whether you’re following a training schedule or just into your regular running routine.

Diving a little deeper into what brings the Arahi 7 it’s stability is HOKA’s J-Frame technology, a total game-changer for anyone who’s keen on maintaining proper form and reducing the risk of pronation-related injuries.

This innovative support system works by guiding your foot through its natural gait cycle without the use of rigid and unforgiving materials.

It’s a dynamic approach to stability, offering a balance between support (without being too rigid in how the shoes force your feet to move), improving your running biomechanics throughout your strides.

The 5mm drop from heel to toe in the Arahi 7 is another aspect that strikes the perfect balance, especially when paired with the responsive cushioning found in the midsole.

This setup provides a natural, efficient transition from heel to toe, making your runs feel more propulsive and less laborious. The medium cushioning offers a delightful blend of responsiveness and comfort, hitting that sweet spot for runners who crave a shoe that feels just right underfoot.

The best thing is that there’s plenty of cushioning under the forefoot as well as under the heel, meaning you can run with a heel strike, mid or forefoot run style (I’m a forefoot runner), this is something that Brooks’ latest Adrenaline GTS 23 lacked, unfortunately.

Then there’s the plush, cushioned upper; HOKA has crafted a breathable and snug environment for your feet that feels super soft and padded without sacrificing functionality.

The material wraps around your foot, offering a secure fit without any unwanted pressure, while ensuring your feet stay cool and dry, even on longer runs. I’ve included more photos of the upper in the gallery below which shoes how padded the tongue, heel counter and collar areas are.

For those of you with sensitive ankles, the Arahi 7’s low collar design is a thoughtful touch. It minimizes pressure and interference around the ankles, providing freedom of movement and comfort, especially for runners with low ankles.

It’s these kinds of thoughtful design elements that make the Arahi 7 stand out in a crowded field of running shoes right now, and why I believe they’re a popular choice among those who have been buying the Arahi series for many years.

I’m a big fan of HOKA shoes that have this articulated heel design, like the amazing Speedgoat 5 trail running shoes, and max cushioned Clifton 9, for example. What makes it so good? Well it allows for great movement of your achilles, without getting that awful feeling of pressure from some more rigid, upright heel counters that are sometimes found at the rear of running shoes.

The versatility of the Arahi 7 is a huge bonus, whether you’re pounding the pavement, taking a leisurely walk, or standing for extended periods throughout the day, these shoes have you covered.

Their design accommodates a wide range of activities, making them a fantastic choice not just for runners, but for anyone who values comfort, support, and style in their everyday lifestyle/walking footwear.

Lastly then is the outsole, which is a tremendous blend of a rubber compound and EVA foam in areas to keep the weight of the shoes down, however, the durability in the EVA foam sections of the outsole is not as durable as the rubberised areas.

There’s always room for improvement, here’s how the Arahi 7 could be better

While the HOKA Arahi 7 excels in many areas, there are a couple of aspects where I believe improvements could enhance its appeal further.

Firstly, the fit of the Arahi 7 tends to lean on the narrow side, some other reviewers have picked up on this too. Therefore the Arahi 7 might not cater well to runners with feet that are slightly wider than average, but don’t worry, you can buy the ‘wide’ version if you fall into that category. The Arahi 6 wasn’t as narrow, in case you’re wondering.

The snugness, while ensuring a secure fit for some, could potentially lead to discomfort or even restrict proper foot movement for others.

Secondly, the addition of a more pronounced rocker geometry could significantly improve the shoe’s performance. Rocker designs are known for their ability to facilitate a smoother transition from heel to toe, enhancing the natural flow of the stride.

By integrating this feature, the Arahi 7 could offer even more support for the foot’s natural rolling motion, potentially increasing efficiency and reducing fatigue over long distances.

And as I write this, it sounds very much like I’m describing the HOKA Clifton 9 which addresses all these issues, and as such presents itself as a better option for a running shoe.

Despite these areas for improvement, the Arahi 7 remains a versatile and supportive option for both running and everyday wear. Its strengths in comfort, and support make it a solid choice for runners seeking a reliable shoe for their weekly mileage or for anyone in need of a comfortable, all-day walking shoe.

HOKA Arahi 7 review summary and whether it’s worth buying

The HOKA Arahi 7 emerges as a top contender in the world of supportive running shoes, offering a blend of comfort, support, and versatility that’s hard to beat. Priced at $145, it represents a reasonable investment for the quality and performance it delivers.

The Arahi 7 is especially suited for runners seeking a dependable daily trainer that can handle a variety of paces and distances, as well as for walkers looking for superior comfort and support during their daily activities.

However, it’s important to note that the Arahi 7 might not be the perfect fit for everyone, Its somewhat narrow design means that runners with wider feet will need to opt for the ‘wide’ version to achieve a comfortable fit.

Ultimately, the HOKA Arahi 7 is best suited for runners who prioritize support and comfort in their running gear and can accommodate a slightly narrower fit. It’s also an excellent choice for casual walkers and those who spend long hours on their feet, thanks to its versatile design and all-day comfort.

On the flip side, runners with wider feet or those seeking a shoe with enhanced stride transition technology may want to consider other options, perhaps even within HOKA’s own lineup, for a better match to their needs – 👀 looks towards the Clifton 9.

Where to buy the HOKA Arahi 7

The Arahi 7 is currently available for $145 at hoka.com, to learn more about them, tap the links below to visit the Hoka product page.


HOKA Arahi 7 image gallery

As the founder of Trail & Kale, and seasoned marathoner & ultrarunner, Alastair loves bringing our readers independent running shoe reviews and gear insights to help you run your best. Learn more about Trail & Kale here.


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