“I want you to stay off your feet as much as possible, don’t put any weight on your legs,” my coach said. He was offering advice a few days before a big marathon that I’d spent months training for. I kept off my feet as much as possible and only walked around the house in an old pair of flip-flops.
The race went well, and afterward, I treated myself by replacing an old pair of Hoka Clifton 8. I noticed the company also sells recovery sandals known as the Hoka Ora Recovery Slide. I was curious, and my coach’s words came back to me about reducing the load on my feet before and after a race. Could recovery sandals helps me avoid overloading my legs? I knew I didn’t need these sandals, but I purchased them anyway.
Hoka sells several versions of its recovery sandals and flip-flops in various colours, including blue, grey, grey and white. They’ve proved surprisingly popular with runners, non-runners and even celebs due to their comfort and price point. You can buy sandals, which I purchased, or a pair of recovery flip-flops with the same technology.
The Recovery Slide 2 sandals wrap around the wearer’s foot, while the flip-flips contain a rubber piece that fits between the wearer’s toes. The older version featured a toe strap which reviewers and wearers complained was uncomfortable.
What Do the Hoka Recovery Slides Do?
The Recovery Slide sandals feature an oversized midsole with an early-state meta-rocker. This Hoka technology is familiar to anyone who has worn their training shoes. The meta-rocker offers the wearer momentum and propels them forward while running.
For sandal wearers, the meta rocker means it’s easier to walk. The sole of the sandals is cushioned with a 6 mm rubber sole. Compared to standard flip-flops or sandals, that’s a significant stack height and requires a little getting used to.
It’s akin to the support you’d get from a maximal running shoe like the Hoka Arahi. The Recovery Slide sandals feature a groove on the sole for finding some traction. They are also 100% vegan.
Can You Wear the Hoka Slides Outside?
They are constructed from rubber and EVA foam, so you can wash them easily or even wear them outside if you’re inclined. They dry when wet. They struck me as far more durable than budget sandals or flip-flops and are ok for outdoor use in short amounts.
However, I don’t recommend wearing the Recovery Slide outside for long walks. Firstly, your feet will get cold. Secondly, like any flip-flops, these sandals fit somewhat loosely to the foot.
The sandals protect a wearer’s toes, but you could still knock them off by banging into the ground or an object at a certain angle. A pair of sandals, no matter how comfortable, doesn’t hold the foot in the same way or offer traction like dedicated walking shoes.
If you’d prefer a version of recovery sandals built for more extended outdoor use, the more expensive Hoka Hopara secures the entire foot via a quick lacing system. It features the same technology as the Ora Slide. I’ll probably pick up a pair of these for walking around the town the next time I go on holiday to a warm climate.
What Are the Hoka Recovery Sandals Like To Wear?
I ordered a 10.5 of the Hoka Recovery Slide 2 based on my running shoe size, and they fit perfectly. Despite the extra stack height, I found them relatively lightweight. They are more comfortable to wear around the house than a standard pair of sandals, flip-flops or Crocs.
I work at home and sometimes wear them around the house instead of shoes. Unlike cheap sandals or flip-flops, I didn’t notice any durability or discomfort issues after wearing them for a few weeks. And my feet didn’t sweat despite the material.
Usually, my hamstrings and quads complain when I’m walking downstairs after a long run. While sandals or flip-flips won’t eliminate the DOMS, I found it easier to walk up and down stairs after a hard workout wearing the Hoka Ora. That stack height cushions or absorbs the impact of walking on hard surfaces like a hardwood floor or tiles.
Perhaps the only downside is the model I bought lacks dedicated arch support; whether this is an issue depends on your needs.
Hoka Ora Recovery Sandals Review: The Bottom Line
The Hoka Ora Recovery are surprisingly comfortable. I usually wear them after a long or tempo run while in the house. Recovery sandals like these are hardly essential and won’t improve a runner’s 5k, 10k, or marathon times.
However, runners who take recovery seriously or want something comfortable to wear after a hard session will enjoy them. Retailing under $50, they’re also a nice present or gift for the runner or athlete in your life.