On’s running shoes seem to be taking steps to world domination; will the Swiss brand’s apparel follow in the same footsteps? Chris Hovenden heads out in the On Running Weather Jacket to find out…
|Product||On Running Weather Jacket|
|Colour||Navy and Shadow|
|Other colours||See website|
|Grade||B – packed full of tech.|
Putting the On Weather Jacket to the test
The On Weather Jacket looks great, in fact, I’ll go as far as to say it looks very cool. It’s packed full of tech; for such a lightweight jacket it seems to be bursting with innovation. It might look all singing and all dancing, but does it tick all the basic boxes and satisfy the fundamentals?
One of the first things I noticed was the interesting approach to ventilation. It’s easy to make a jacket that repels the wind and rain (a bin bag could do the trick), but doing so whilst providing adequate ventilation is quite a challenge – overheating can be as big an issue, if not bigger, as rain/wind.
The upper, across the shoulders and chest, is said to be made from 100% polyamide protective and tear proof fabric which is coated in durable water repellent (DWR). Beneath the upper is a lightweight mesh material. The design is best described as the robust upper being layered on top of the mesh material and loosely attached with only several attachment points – the theory being air can flow in and out through the gaps.
The hood has an elastic lining and an adjustable elastic cord to help you get a good fit. Further, the hood has a peak to help keep the rain out of your eyes.
The hood and the upper, along with the sealed zippers, do a good job of keeping out the wind and rain, and despite my initial reservations the On Weather Jacket is far more robust than its lightweight construction would suggest. However, although the ventilation system seems a good idea, on some days I felt I was overheating slightly.
The waterproof chest pocket provides storage, access for a headphone cable, and a nice printed explanation of meteorology and reflection. A word of warning that may not be needed (and could be simple Darwinism, which I failed), is that putting a large/heavy phone in the chest pocket that will bounce around when running could result in irritation on your neck from the jacket’s zip rubbing (please note, the top of the zip is covered by a flap).
The inside of the forearm is made from soft stretchy material. The wrist cuff is elastic and the outside of the wrist has an overhanging waterproof flap. The waterproof flap appears a good idea, but it did cover/get in the way of my watch; some may prefer a tighter/closer fitting elastic cuff and the cuff does get wet from sweat or the elements.
I am 187 cm and wore a medium. The cut is race focused and fairly slim fitting, although I found a slight bagging around the chest (maybe I need to hit the gym?!) and I would have preferred a slightly longer jacket.
The arms were also a bit longer than I would have wished – in short, if you can, try before you buy.
There’s a lot to like about the On Weather Jacket: its impressive aesthetics (it looks very cool), lightweight, innovative, and well made (high quality finish and robust). However, an outlay of just shy of £200 is substantial and for that price I’d want a jacket that is a little closer to perfect.
You’ll look the business, but the On Weather Jacket comes with a price-tag to match its impressive style.