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  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by carofe View Post
    Thank you all for all the good information. I need to ride more to verify what the problem is. I think my cadence may be too slow and as result my pedaling is hard, and my weaker foot is getting tax harder. I need to pay attention to what’s going on first to get a better idea.
    Regarding my foot, they are with the toes pointing outward and when I stand on the ball of my foot and do a squat my knees go outward as well. So the root of the V shape is in the hip. When I force my foot to be straight so that my knees are straight when doing a squat I feel that my hips are forced to do something “unnatural”.
    This is getting complicated .
    Keep in mind however, how the foot 'cant-s' aka valgus versus varus:

    Varus vs. Valgus. In orthopedics a varus deformity is a term for the
    inward angulation of the distal segment of a bone or joint.
    The opposite of varus is called valgus , in which the angulation is pointed outwards.

    ...this dramatically affects the femur V (looking down from above) you speak of...not solely predicated on your anatomy. Yes, a bit complicated and you have to visualize in 3-D. If your shoe/foot cant aka bottom of your foot is canted more inward aka pronation, your knees will natively track closer to the top tube. By contrast if you ride more on the outside of your feet, you will ride more toe pointed out and knees will track farther from the top tube. So it just isn't your anatomy...say how you walk down the street...but rather how you connect to the bike.

    Based upon what you have written you need to learn a bit more and you will and/or see a local cycling fit guru who knows a lot about the pedal stroke.

    Here is a smart guy on the web...his name is John who really understands the interaction of the rider on the bike 'in total'.
    Check it out...ties into to interaction with hip position you suspect:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zdEepaGQqwk

    Last edited by 11spd; 08-08-2018 at 07:21 AM.

  2. #27
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    From today ride, 19+ miles.
    I can keep my knees pretty decently straight during the ride without thinking about it.
    I didn’t have numbness but I did have some tingling. I noticed that even with the stiffer rubber sole I can feel that the foot is on an irregular surface, and I notice “hills and valleys” right by my toes that tingle.
    So I went ahead and bought clipless pedals and really comfortable Shimano road shoes. I heard of somebody else having the same issue and going away after going to clipless. That gives me some hope . I think the lack of stiffness of the sole and the flat pedal irregular surface, plus my foot sensitivity to it is the problem here.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by carofe View Post
    From today ride, 19+ miles.
    I can keep my knees pretty decently straight during the ride without thinking about it.
    I didn’t have numbness but I did have some tingling. I noticed that even with the stiffer rubber sole I can feel that the foot is on an irregular surface, and I notice “hills and valleys” right by my toes that tingle.
    So I went ahead and bought clipless pedals and really comfortable Shimano road shoes. I heard of somebody else having the same issue and going away after going to clipless. That gives me some hope . I think the lack of stiffness of the sole and the flat pedal irregular surface, plus my foot sensitivity to it is the problem here.
    I ride both ways...rigid carbon shoes...not mtb and a bike with large platform pedals I ride with Asics tennis shoes. Honestly, I like riding both ways. Key with platform is the right pedals...need a broad base. I actually like to ride with forefoot flex to stretch my feet. Just make sure the ball of your foot isn't too loaded....ride more mid foot...like little kids do.

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by carofe View Post
    From today ride, 19+ miles.
    I can keep my knees pretty decently straight during the ride without thinking about it.
    I didn’t have numbness but I did have some tingling. I noticed that even with the stiffer rubber sole I can feel that the foot is on an irregular surface, and I notice “hills and valleys” right by my toes that tingle.
    So I went ahead and bought clipless pedals and really comfortable Shimano road shoes. I heard of somebody else having the same issue and going away after going to clipless. That gives me some hope . I think the lack of stiffness of the sole and the flat pedal irregular surface, plus my foot sensitivity to it is the problem here.
    Go with it!

    Then notice if the two outer toes go numb. The tingling could be residual effect from the last ride.

    Lack of stiffness of the sole and irregular pedal cage surfaces will do it. !!spd and I have lots of miles in our legs, so our feet can handle soft soles and some foot flex. The muscles in the legs are holding everything steady. Your legs may not be as "well trained" and therefore have some comfort problems.

    The stiff shoes and cleats will get the legs on the right track and you'll be able to ride both "clipless" and platform pedals with running shoes without numb toes, eventually. I've been riding both clipped and not clipped in for years. Clipping in taught the legs how to do it painlessly. You'll never look back!

  5. #30
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    I got Shimano Road shoes (rp2) and Shimano SPD-SL. What is the difference between getting a SPD-SL pedals vs SPD pedals with cleats walking adaptors for Road shoes (so the SPD cleats are not hitting the floor)?

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by carofe View Post
    I got Shimano Road shoes (rp2) and Shimano SPD-SL. What is the difference between getting a SPD-SL pedals vs SPD pedals with cleats walking adaptors for Road shoes (so the SPD cleats are not hitting the floor)?
    Well, the SLs are triangular cleats that mount on the shoe with three bolts. The SPDs are smaller cleats that mount in a recess in the sole on two bolts.

    The SLs have slippery soles, no treads, just the big cleat. So many riders carry plastic covers to slip over the plastic cleats to walk into the fast food stores.

    SPD cleats are small enough to leave room for a tread. They're actually great walking shoes! The downside of the small cleat is it concentrates the force of the pedal stroke into a very small area, which on an inadequately stiff sole sometimes leaves a hot spot where it rests under the foot. The SLs have a cleat and pedal platform that spreads the pressure over a wider area, alleviating hot spots.

    Commuting and riding errands, SPD works best. Rider can unclip, hop off the bike, and go shopping in style with a spring in the step.

    On long, hard, group rides, the SLs would be more appreciated. The shoes are slightly lighter and flex less, the foot-pedal interface presents a firmer platform, so all respond nicely when the going gets tough. Roadies with SL pedals are a bit like big birds. They walk clumsily, but get on their bikes and fly elegantly with the greatest of ease. You got the right one, IMO!
    Last edited by Fredrico; 08-09-2018 at 10:26 PM.

  7. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredrico View Post
    Well, the SLs are triangular cleats that mount on the shoe with three bolts. The SPDs are smaller cleats that mount in a recess in the sole on two bolts.

    The SLs have slippery soles, no treads, just the big cleat. So many riders carry plastic covers to slip over the plastic cleats to walk into the fast food stores.

    SPD cleats are small enough to leave room for a tread. They're actually great walking shoes! The downside of the small cleat is it concentrates the force of the pedal stroke into a very small area, which on an inadequately stiff sole sometimes leaves a hot spot where it rests under the foot. The SLs have a cleat and pedal platform that spreads the pressure over a wider area, alleviating hot spots.

    Commuting and riding errands, SPD works best. Rider can unclip, hop off the bike, and go shopping in style with a spring in the step.

    On long, hard, group rides, the SLs would be more appreciated. The shoes are slightly lighter and flex less, the foot-pedal interface presents a firmer platform, so all respond nicely when the going gets tough. Roadies with SL pedals are a bit like big birds. They walk clumsily, but get on their bikes and fly elegantly with the greatest of ease. You got the right one, IMO!
    Well said Fredrico…
    SPD pedals are more of a compromise between riding and walking for the reason that Fredrico explained. Can't have total sole stiffness and foot immobility which is good for foot health and also good walking capability as they tend to be mutually exclusive. I like really good grippy large platform pedals for forefoot load distribution and very good support and extremely comfortable tennis shoes for a change in my riding. Can still rock on platforms and hit speeds I typically ride on my fast road bike.

    One of the biggest grins I get is of people trying to drop me on my light dropbar touring bike with rack I ride with tennis shoes and platform pedals. If unloaded and on flat land, most can't drop me on that bike. If you have a clean pedal stroke and I do, for non climbing, non sprinting steady state efforts, platform pedals are about as fast. I know some can't ride fast on platform pedals but I always could because of my pedal stroke.

    This video shows a comparison and always good for a laugh. Simon of course has an immaculate pedal stroke as do all the GCN riders:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AkMCYYNTWUY
    Last edited by 11spd; 08-10-2018 at 05:59 AM.

  8. #33
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    Thank you guys. I use my Fuji bike only for fitness, which is riding long miles on a bike lane that is not shared with cars, so very very few places where you have to actually stop. I would probably use my other cheap gravity road bike for commuting and errands, and I would put the flat pedals on those.

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by 11spd View Post
    Well said Fredrico…
    SPD pedals are more of a compromise between riding and walking for the reason that Fredrico explained. Can't have total sole stiffness and foot immobility which is good for foot health and also good walking capability as they tend to be mutually exclusive. I like really good grippy large platform pedals for forefoot load distribution and very good support and extremely comfortable tennis shoes for a change in my riding. Can still rock on platforms and hit speeds I typically ride on my fast road bike.

    One of the biggest grins I get is of people trying to drop me on my light dropbar touring bike with rack I ride with tennis shoes and platform pedals. If unloaded and on flat land, most can't drop me on that bike. If you have a clean pedal stroke and I do, for non climbing, non sprinting steady state efforts, platform pedals are about as fast. I know some can't ride fast on platform pedals but I always could because of my pedal stroke.

    This video shows a comparison and always good for a laugh. Simon of course has an immaculate pedal stroke as do all the GCN riders:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AkMCYYNTWUY
    I have actually been riding with flat all my life. I used to ride a lot daily for commuting and errands, and also used to do crazy stuff with BMX bikes with friends during my teens years all with flats. It was all short distances, lots of stops, and racing. But then I stopped for years. I can ride with my flat pedals decently fast. And I like the confidence it gives me for handling the bike in all kind of situation where reflects and technique can prevent a fall.
    I’m not a racer at this point in life but just trying to go long miles at a steady pace to exercise and have fun, and hopefully lose some good belly fat . Sometimes I do climb 3, 5, 7% in the mountains outside the city but nothing crazy.
    So far the only consistent problem I have had when doing longer miles is my foot. I’m hoping that these comfy and stiff shoes I bought will help.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by 11spd View Post
    One of the biggest grins I get is of people trying to drop me on my light dropbar touring bike with rack I ride with tennis shoes and platform pedals. If unloaded and on flat land, most can't drop me on that bike. If you have a clean pedal stroke and I do, for non climbing, non sprinting steady state efforts, platform pedals are about as fast. I know some can't ride fast on platform pedals but I always could because of my pedal stroke.
    I don't think it was you but about this time last year, I and others were passed by a guy looks to be in his mid 30's riding a hybrid bike with platform looking pedals. We were doing about 20 - 21 mph on flats with almost no winds. He was doing about 25 mph and he had a big backpack on him (more wind drag). He sure looked like a commuter because he was wearing khaki shorts, sneakers & polo shirts. I don't remember seeing anything on the bike that resembles electric motor or battery pack...

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by bvber View Post
    I don't think it was you but about this time last year, I and others were passed by a guy looks to be in his mid 30's riding a hybrid bike with platform looking pedals. We were doing about 20 - 21 mph on flats with almost no winds. He was doing about 25 mph and he had a big backpack on him (more wind drag). He sure looked like a commuter because he was wearing khaki shorts, sneakers & polo shirts. I don't remember seeing anything on the bike that resembles electric motor or battery pack...
    Wasn't me brother...stronger than me but I might be able to keep up with your pace on platform pedals or do time to time. There are some real freaks out there for sure. More than a few of those flatbar tennis shoe riders have kept pace with me when I was laying it down pretty good.

    I remember a few years ago, I was out riding and a guy on mountain bike caught my wheel on a route I used to ride. I was riding pretty briskly, and I can drop most guys on a mtb on my roadbike. Not this guy. For grins I sped up to 25 mph or so for a mile or so thinking he would fall back and he didn't. Eventually we pulled into the parking lot and I asked him about his riding background and he told me he was a CAT 1. Stronger rider than I ever was.

  12. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by 11spd View Post
    Wasn't me brother...stronger than me but I might be able to keep up with your pace on platform pedals or do time to time. There are some real freaks out there for sure. More than a few of those flatbar tennis shoe riders have kept pace with me when I was laying it down pretty good.

    I remember a few years ago, I was out riding and a guy on mountain bike caught my wheel on a route I used to ride. I was riding pretty briskly, and I can drop most guys on a mtb on my roadbike. Not this guy. For grins I sped up to 25 mph or so for a mile or so thinking he would fall back and he didn't. Eventually we pulled into the parking lot and I asked him about his riding background and he told me he was a CAT 1. Stronger rider than I ever was.
    hey man, don't feel bad.

    I was riding along the MUT briskly at a steady 18 mph on my fendered road bike, and this kid passed me on his Trek mountain bike with 2.125 dirt tires, platform pedals, front shocks, the works. He was the "retard" who depended on that bike to get to his job stocking shelves at the local Target. We worked on his bike a number of times at the shop. I tried to stay with him for a half mile and he dropped me summarily. The guy was a machine capable of putting out 300+ watts for at least the 4 miles he relentlessly pulled away at about 25 mph. He didn't seem to get it later at the shop when I joked he needed a good road bike and a team to back him up. You just never know.

  13. #38
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    Practiced today for a while with the new clipless shoes and pedals. Coincidentally, while practicing on the grass I stepped with my New Shimano Yellow Cleats on a just laid down warm dog poop. Life.
    Well, I sweated practicing stops and also emergency stops a-la GCN.
    Tomorrow I’m going for a long ride.
    I put minimal tension and also adjusted the cleats to my comfort. I’m liking it so far.

  14. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by carofe View Post
    Tomorrow I’m going for a long ride.
    Those shoes are made to step on all sorts of natural elements dry or wet. Hope you cleaned it well enough so that the odor won't be an issue, especially when you get it going and breathing heavily.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bvber View Post
    Those shoes are made to step on all sorts of natural elements dry or wet. Hope you cleaned it well enough so that the odor won't be an issue, especially when you get it going and breathing heavily.
    Yeah, it was raining a little bit when I went out and I felt quite confident pedaling off the saddle. I did hose the poop down, and the whole bike as well.

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    Folks,
    I have been using the clipin pedals for a while for short rides because I see that because of my duck feet I have been needing several adjustments to not force my knees.

    My left leg is perfectly pedaling with total comfort. My right leg is not comfortable, it keeps asking for more foot angle outward (toe outward). If I try to not hit the crank arm my right knee gets too close to the frame, and if I try to get my knee straight my foot wants to angle outward more and end up hitting the crank arm.
    I have put the cleat as inside and back and angle as it can be. I have tried adding 2x1mm washers on that pedal as well but not doing much.

    Should I?
    * Raise the saddle height so my foot ask for a little less angle? (I'm currently very comfortable with my saddle height)
    * Buy pedal extenders for both sides (even though my left foot is very comfortable)
    * Spend big bucks on a bike fitter + speedplay set?
    * Spend big bucks on a speedplay set because I definitely need it?
    * Combination of the above?
    * Just ride to see if it is a coordination issue that will get better over time?

    When I used to ride the flat pedals I noticed a continuous need to change the position of my right foot and that I used to place my foot very angled and the toes on the very outer edge of the pedal.

    I'm liking the clipin pedals so far because of the float and the confident you get when pedaling off the saddle. But man it brings up all those structural issues you got.

    Thank you

  17. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by carofe View Post
    Folks,
    I have been using the clipin pedals for a while for short rides because I see that because of my duck feet I have been needing several adjustments to not force my knees.

    My left leg is perfectly pedaling with total comfort. My right leg is not comfortable, it keeps asking for more foot angle outward (toe outward). If I try to not hit the crank arm my right knee gets too close to the frame, and if I try to get my knee straight my foot wants to angle outward more and end up hitting the crank arm.
    I have put the cleat as inside and back and angle as it can be. I have tried adding 2x1mm washers on that pedal as well but not doing much.

    Should I?
    * Raise the saddle height so my foot ask for a little less angle? (I'm currently very comfortable with my saddle height)
    * Buy pedal extenders for both sides (even though my left foot is very comfortable)
    * Spend big bucks on a bike fitter + speedplay set?
    * Spend big bucks on a speedplay set because I definitely need it?
    * Combination of the above?
    * Just ride to see if it is a coordination issue that will get better over time?

    When I used to ride the flat pedals I noticed a continuous need to change the position of my right foot and that I used to place my foot very angled and the toes on the very outer edge of the pedal.

    I'm liking the clipin pedals so far because of the float and the confident you get when pedaling off the saddle. But man it brings up all those structural issues you got.

    Thank you
    Unless you're legs are distorted from an injury, the right foot should learn how to do the movement without skewing laterally on the strokes. So leave saddle height alone and give it some time. Pedal easy and practice the movement, tone up the muscles, strengthen connective tissue, and see if the foot stabilizes from simply training.

    Got your right cleat in exact same position as the left one? I predict the feet will find a lateral position where the heel won't hit the chain stay or shoe hit the crank arm, that will also be the most comfortable position.

  18. #43
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    carofe,
    As a general rule, I typically don't recommend fittings universally, but you have what is considered an asymmetry on the bike.

    A couple of notes:
    - yes, Speedplays can be adjusted to have wide open float and btw what I ride and can be friendly to those with foot position exceeding typical range of motion of other pedals throughout the pedal stroke.

    - But, 'you may not need Speedplays'. Truthfully? With what you describe, you are doing it wrong. So what gives and why the asymmetry? As it turns out, feet and knee position starts with body position on the bike. If your right foot is splayed out, this is generally a function of your pelvis being angled on the bike looking down from a vertical plane. I spoke of foot varus and how this can affect the V angle you speak of because foot sole angle can affect knee position but sounds as though your body is rotated on the bike aka yaw angle.

    - Keep in mind there is no such thing as a perfectly symmetric rider. In fact the insightful John Cobb who has some helpful fit videos on the web and sells his own saddle line often recommends rotation of the saddle on the bike in a vertical plane. This is because people's pelvis typically aren't perfectly symmetric, nor how they sit on the bike is perfectly symmetric. I hope this makes sense.

    - A last note and this is widely misunderstood within the cycling community. How one walks down the street does 'not have to' directly correlate to toe position on the bike. If you walk like a duck like you mention, this does not have to precisely portend to your toe position on the bicycle throughout the pedal stroke. It doesn't for me for example. I tend to pedal pretty straight and when I walk as most people, I walk slightly toe out but perhaps not to the extreme of a duck. This is based biomechanically on how the knee articulates on the bike and its position relate to the pelvis and also affected by the varus angle of the sole of the foot as it connects the pedal. If you study the gate of pro riders with the best pedal strokes...this is getting into the weeds of pro riders, you may in fact find that some walk toe out and actually ride more pigeon toed aka toe in. The two don't necessarily correlate for the same person.

    Now, I don't necessarily believe you can 'fix yourself' based upon what I wrote above. But, forearmed with this information, you could seek the best fitter in your area to help you with your pedal stroke. It starts with fit to the bike. An astute fitter can see why you have the asymmetry you describe and my opinion fitting riders a long time it is likely rooted in your pelvis being rotated in the vertical plane and even relates to varus angle of the foot how it connects to the pedal(s). You need to start from ground zero basically.

    I hope above makes sense. Don't force anything, one the worse things you can do, trying to keep the splayed foot in. This will set you up for injury. I strongly suggest you see a fitter if you can't self correct based upon the above by changing your body position. Cleat varus shims can be experimented with by trial and error. You may also have a slight leg length disparity contributing to your issue...or not. Fit is a mosaic that isn't easy to decipher for the uninitiated. But when you see a good cyclist with very clean pedal stroke, this is typically the result of years of analysis and trial and error.
    Last edited by 11spd; 08-17-2018 at 02:49 AM.

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    Help with toe numbness

    So today I put my flat pedals back on and went for a ride. I observed what my hips, legs and feet wanted to do during the ride.
    Around 7mi later I noticed my hips wanted me to get the feet as close as possible to put more power comfortably, so I did, then more, so I did, then more... and I couldn’t, or I would be riding on the crank arms! I found myself riding with almost straight feet on both sides, on the ball of my foot, very close to the crank without hitting it, but just slightly rubbing it.
    I was amazed of being able to do that so comfortably. I rode 13mi like that.
    I went back home and I put my SL pedals back and, leaving the screws hole back as they were, I put the cleats centered and then angled just a little bit (I had it far back, far inside and very angled). My goal was to set it up the same way I was pedaling with my flats.

    To my surprise, I was gladly able to ride another 5mi with great comfort and power.
    Two things that I did notice, the heel out float in the right foot bugged me few times. I had to make sure my ankle was firm. Sometimes I think the lack of strength to keep things in place without effort, plays a role here too.

    I’m very glad I figured out how to use the clipless pedals. No idea what the problem was, but points to lack of coordination, bad habits or just the initial fear of injury was causing me to micro manage the pedaling and making it worse.
    Thank you guys for you help, you were so right. Coordination is key, and the way you walk doesn’t translate to how you should adjust your pedal/cleats.
    Last edited by carofe; 08-18-2018 at 02:13 PM.

  20. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by carofe View Post
    So today I put my flat pedals back on and went for a ride. I observed what my hips, legs and feet wanted to do during the ride.
    Around 7mi later I noticed my hips wanted me to get the feet as close as possible to put more power comfortably, so I did, then more, so I did, then more... and I couldn’t, or I would be riding on the crank arms! I found myself riding with almost straight feet on both sides, on the ball of my foot, very close to the crank without hitting it, but just slightly rubbing it.
    I was amazed of being able to do that so comfortably. I rode 13mi like that.
    I went back home and I put my SL pedals back and, leaving the screws hole back as they were, I put the cleats centered and then angled just a little bit (I had it far back, far inside and very angled). My goal was to set it up the same way I was pedaling with my flats.

    To my surprise, I was gladly able to ride another 5mi with great comfort and power.
    Two things that I did notice, the heel out float in the right foot bugged me few times. I had to make sure my ankle was firm. Sometimes I think the lack of strength to keep things in place without effort, plays a role here too.

    I’m very glad I figured out how to use the clipless pedals. No idea what the problem was, but points to lack of coordination, bad habits or just the initial fear of injury was causing me to micro manage the pedaling and making it worse.
    Thank you guys for you help, you were so right. Coordination is key, and the way you walk doesn’t translate to how you should adjust your pedal/cleats.
    Don't know if you can see it or not, but there will be marks from the pedal cages on the flat pedals pressed into the soles of the shoes. You can determine cant angle by lining up the cleats to these markings.

    The reason I say that is I've had problems with the knees from cleats that were canted horizontally at the wrong angle. Could feel it in both knees, prominently in the right knee that got loosened up weight lifting. Have no problem with it now, but the knee hurts if the cleat goes out of alignment. Its almost perfectly perpendicular to the pedal spindles, a good place to start and in 99% of cases, right on. Shoes have cleat markings on the soles showing this angle.

    Get that right and the rest is the legs learning how to pedal. It's one of the most pleasurable aspects of "cycling," getting down the movement so it looks effortless and rider can get the heart working to a steady load. It improves over the years and miles. Have fun with it.

  21. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by 11spd View Post
    - Keep in mind there is no such thing as a perfectly symmetric rider. In fact the insightful John Cobb who has some helpful fit videos on the web and sells his own saddle line often recommends rotation of the saddle on the bike in a vertical plane. This is because people's pelvis typically aren't perfectly symmetric, nor how they sit on the bike is perfectly symmetric. I hope this makes sense.
    Cobb did a fit clinic with us in the Longview, TX, Bike Club back in the '90s. He got some riders to cant their saddles off center, don't remember exactly how he determined how much or in which direction. But Rusty and I pretty much decided to point the saddle straight ahead, like we were doing for what we believed were obvious reasons.

    Cobb specialized in fitting triathletes on their steep seat tubed TT bikes and tri-bars. The riders would be ensconced on their perineums, not their sit bones so much, so yeah, I guess tilting the saddles left or right might have helped compensate for an uneven stroke. But for standard 60/40 weight distribution of standard road bikes, it would be necessary only with a serious paraplegic.

    Much better to learn how to pedal with a 30 degree bend in knee at bottom of stroke, and insides of shoes pointing straight ahead, and the rider will then naturally get comfortable and efficient, all the more with the miles.

    Trail and error. You got it, carofe!

  22. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredrico View Post
    Cobb did a fit clinic with us in the Longview, TX, Bike Club back in the '90s. He got some riders to cant their saddles off center, don't remember exactly how he determined how much or in which direction. But Rusty and I pretty much decided to point the saddle straight ahead, like we were doing for what we believed were obvious reasons.

    Cobb specialized in fitting triathletes on their steep seat tubed TT bikes and tri-bars. The riders would be ensconced on their perineums, not their sit bones so much, so yeah, I guess tilting the saddles left or right might have helped compensate for an uneven stroke. But for standard 60/40 weight distribution of standard road bikes, it would be necessary only with a serious paraplegic.

    Much better to learn how to pedal with a 30 degree bend in knee at bottom of stroke, and insides of shoes pointing straight ahead, and the rider will then naturally get comfortable and efficient, all the more with the miles.

    Trail and error. You got it, carofe!
    Fred,
    I think you know I like and respect your contributions here and also appreciate your even keel and loads of riding experience you provide.

    Fit is partly philosophical. For example, I take a page out of Cobb's book. Yes, I don't think he is perfect either...sets B riders up too aggressive etc, but I think he gets a lot of it right. For example, Cobb recognizes and I support this...that riders...we as human's just aren't symmetric. Our pelvises' aren't, our legs, arms and feet are different sizes and our faces aren't. We are two people in one essentially. This is philosophy. So I don't really believe in a symmetrical fit to the bike. I believe our anatomical differences set us up for slight variation side to side. I for example rotate my saddle about 5 deg. to the left. My body sets up better on the bike this way. My thighs intersect with the saddle more equivalently with this saddle position. Some believe I have a very clean and symmetric pedal stroke. I believe it is as well. I tend to be higher cadence rider and lean on my cardio for speed.

    Effort to point the feet straight as you put it, I believe to be a false premise. Just like I believe its a false premise to believe everybody would be best served with a dead straight saddle. Cobb knows a lot about fit and I agree with him. Feet position isn't a directive. Its a symptom of a larger mosaic known as fit.

    Again a bit more philosophy which plays into Carol's comments. Forgive me but I believe she has a long way to go in her asperation to pedal her bike properly. This is just based upon what she wrote. Her concept about 'pointing her feet straight'...or uncoordinated effort....these concepts hold little water truthfully. But she maybe on her way to becoming a better rider with a pedal stroke that will propel her more efficiently.
    My thoughts.

  23. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by 11spd View Post
    Forgive me but I believe she has a long way to go in her asperation to pedal her bike properly.
    I'm a dude, my name is Carlos

    Based on today experience, which was much better, When I go uphill, the first part of my ride, I tend to drop my heels a lot and somehow I put my foot in bad situation. I feel like I'm pedaling using the end of my balls of my foot towards the pinky. I think all this is causing my foot to ask more much more angle or something.
    When going downhill, the second part of the ride, I tend to have less of an issue with angles, and no heel drop, unless I'm pushing too hard. When I force myself to press down more towards the big toe ball, I have less foot angle issues and the tend to be a more straight and want to have the feet closer to each other, but the right one still needs a little bit more angle out.
    I'm saying all this but I'm not even 100% sure of my observations. The only thing that seems to be more accurate is that when I force myself to pedal using the balls of my foot towards the big toe I feel more comfortable angle wise.
    BTW, the awkward feel I get on my right foot when I say "it is asking for more angle" is the same feel you have right before unclipping by turning the heel out.
    Anyways, I think I may need to experiment more with cleat position, wedges or give up and pay for the bike fitter :S.

  24. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by carofe View Post
    I'm a dude, my name is Carlos

    Based on today experience, which was much better, When I go uphill, the first part of my ride, I tend to drop my heels a lot and somehow I put my foot in bad situation. I feel like I'm pedaling using the end of my balls of my foot towards the pinky. I think all this is causing my foot to ask more much more angle or something.
    When going downhill, the second part of the ride, I tend to have less of an issue with angles, and no heel drop, unless I'm pushing too hard. When I force myself to press down more towards the big toe ball, I have less foot angle issues and the tend to be a more straight and want to have the feet closer to each other, but the right one still needs a little bit more angle out.
    I'm saying all this but I'm not even 100% sure of my observations. The only thing that seems to be more accurate is that when I force myself to pedal using the balls of my foot towards the big toe I feel more comfortable angle wise.
    BTW, the awkward feel I get on my right foot when I say "it is asking for more angle" is the same feel you have right before unclipping by turning the heel out.
    Anyways, I think I may need to experiment more with cleat position, wedges or give up and pay for the bike fitter :S.
    Well, seems to me, if you get comfortable in a given positioning after experimenting, that's one step in the right direction. If the foot stays comfortable over the next 50 miles, stick with it. If not, go back to experimenting.

    Well, I preferred to do it this way because fit science wasn't all that complicated back in '79 when I started out, and I was already in great shape from lifting weights, aside from yoga, probably the best way to establish overall balance and symmetry, neglected by years of inactivity or specialization in the life tasks at hand.

    I still banged up the knees trying to get stronger mashing at low cadences, so took up Bernard Hinault's advice and learned how to pedal fast, 90-100 rpm, in easy gears the legs could follow the crank around, rather than just push down. The pushes are still there, but moderated by the rest of the leg in purposeful movements, not mashing down on each stroke. This stimulated the slow twitch aerobic muscle fibers and I can now pedal harder and go way into anaerobic, without completely losing it in 15 seconds. . With some concentration, I can climb steep grades smoothly and very efficiently at 60 rpm, gears I used to have to push hard on. And when the heart rate goes above AT, which it will at high cadence by the top, the legs recover in the next few minutes and can do it again. Before, the fast twitch would load up with pain and ruin the legs for the rest of the ride. They would never fully recover.

    11spd, you're the first rider I've read, to say he's benefitted from canting saddle off center. And sure, as the organism ages, it goes out of symmetry according to what uses its been put to, how specialized its adapted, and the vagaries of crashes, injuries, genetics, and which side you preferred to sleep on as an infant.

    So we have a conundrum trying to separate adjustments that will dial in fit and efficiency, from compensating for handicaps the body adds to the equation. Seems to me, if the hips are out of symmetry, rider would rub on one side of the saddle and less on the other side. Looking at the relative wear marks on each side of the saddle would tell you which way to cant, I would think. How did you do it, 11spd?

    My feeling is, if Carlos is more comfortable pressing down more towards the big toe ball, that's because ergonomically, that's where the weight is spread out most efficiently over the whole foot and the pinky toes don't have to handle the weight anymore. The question: does the errant pressure return when you stop thinking about it, or does permanent elimination require a specific variation in fit, such as shoe insoles widely marketed for this problem? Generally speaking, if the discomfort goes away after the miles, it was from lack of training. If the pain doesn't go away, or returns after hard efforts, its bad fit. So the first thing to do: get comfortable on the bike. Then look into minor adjustments to tweak up power, careful not to screw up what fit got right.

    For example, lots of riders move saddle all the way back, saying they get a fuller push on the downstrokes with the strongest muscles in the body, the quads. The power on each stroke is very satisfying. However, when riders learn to spin, quite naturally as fitness improves, they find moving the saddle forward up over the crank gives considerably more power at high cadences because the crank is right there under the body in a vertical position more like walking. Track bikes have 75 degree seat angles exactly for this reason.
    Last edited by Fredrico; 08-20-2018 at 04:53 PM.

  25. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by carofe View Post
    I'm a dude, my name is Carlos

    I feel like I'm pedaling using the end of my balls ...
    Ouch!

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