What kind of shoes are best?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by katzmusik, Jan 30, 2006.

  1. katzmusik

    katzmusik New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2005
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    I hope this is the right place for this question. If not, sorry!

    I have a Trek 800 that I just got fitted with slicks so I can commute to work on it. I've also entered a 25 mile ride for charity, which will take place on road, so basically, I'm riding on road all the time. My question is this - what kind of shoes should I be using? Right now I have a pair of Specialized Comp MTB shoes that are fairly comfy, but I use toe clips instead of SPD or clipless pedals - I'm not too sure I'd feel safe using those driving among traffic.

    The problem is, my little toes tend to get numb the longer I ride, even though the shoes fit just fine...well, I guess they DON'T fit just fine if I get numb, right? Anyway, should I be using road shoes? Do they work better with toe clips? What are the most comfortable shoes that don't cost more than a bike?:cool: I'd appreciate any advice you experienced riders have.

    Thanks!
     
    Tags:


  2. Avahi29

    Avahi29 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2006
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    Heya katzmusik,

    I've been commuting to work since April 05 and bought some shoes for the job. I do use clipless and I like them especially on the hills and bumpy roads. I have a few comments on them too, but i'll leave that until later and get to the question.

    I bought some Nike shoes (I think they were Kato's) for a fiver in my LBS, they're like a trainer with a stiffer sole, like the Specailized Taho and can take cleats. They're pretty basic, but reasonably stiff and a little large for me. Later I bought some Diadora Skorpiones cheap off the web. These are much more along the lines of a "proper" MTB shoe, much stiffer with straps and ratchets. They do make a difference to your power and I like the straps (easy in/out).

    Basically in the summer I use the diadora, easy to use, light and good airflow and in the winter I use the nike's. They're more wind resistant, block more rain and I can wear thicker socks because they're a bit big. They're also easier to walk around in because of the trainer like design.

    Both of these prob fall into a more mtb bracket i.e. they have soles you can walk on and recessed cleat holes. Road shoes are ultra stiff and almost impossible to walk in as they have no tread to speak of and no flex. Hit a marble floor and you could well end up on your arse and they'll prob be difficult to use with straps too, although I've not tried them. Mostly they're designed for the big cleats for Road clipless pedals...more surface area, more power transfer.

    Hope that helps

    As for clipless (if you're considering them):
    1. Really good for power
    2. Get ones with adjustable tension to get in/out
    3. You will fall off at least once because of them, usually at the most embarrassing time (traffic lights and in front of a lorry)
    4.The trainer type shoes seem to be easier to clip than the more aggressive MTB types
     
  3. Adam-from-SLO

    Adam-from-SLO New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2003
    Messages:
    513
    Likes Received:
    0
    clippless = Sidi :)
     
  4. unicos

    unicos New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2004
    Messages:
    106
    Likes Received:
    0
    Cycling shoes are like every day shoes. What is good for me may not be good for you. (Personally I like Sidi) The numbness may not be due so much to the shoe as to your foot position on the pedal. Or overall position on the bike. Knee over pedal, leg extention, seat fore/aft, etc. This is why clipless are ultimately the best; because your foot is allways in the same position. Shimano has a pedal that, is platform on one side and clipless on the other that, I think is an excellent commuting pedal. If the shoe fits properly (cycling shoes should be a little more snug that everyday shoes) and it is comfortable, then look at the other aspects that could be causing your problem first.

     
  5. Scarpelli

    Scarpelli New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2003
    Messages:
    48
    Likes Received:
    1
    The number one reason for toes getting numb while riding is leaning forward and jamming your feet into your shoes. I bet your neck and shoulders are tired, too. Relax back on the saddle, and pedal with your legs, not your feet. Float your feet in your shoes, and don't curl your toes up!
     
  6. laffingbilly

    laffingbilly New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2005
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    0
    if you are using toe clips with straps, the straps are probably pinching a nerve or cutting off circulation. i had that problem when using them in the past. really, if you are not comfortable wearing clipless, then do not bother doing it. your use does not really warrant getting new shoes and pedals either. you might try something like the powergrips instead of the traditional toe clip and strap combination. http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?category=108&subcategory=1077&brand=&sku=1270&storetype=&estoreid=&pagename=

    we can all say which shoes we like, but as someone said, people's feet are different and different shoes have different comfort for different people. The shoes you have are probably more than adequate, especially if you are using them for commuting. road specific shoes aren't designed for walking. the location of the toe clip strap is probably the problem. do you have a wide forefoot or flat feet by chance? anyways, i would take a look at something like the powergrips to replace your clips and straps.
     
  7. hd reynolds

    hd reynolds New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    Messages:
    813
    Likes Received:
    0
    Get clipless and practice pulling up on the upstroke. You wont get numb toes... guaranteed.

    Btw, I dont know if you have straps w/ ur toeclips. Clipless pedals are safer. They're intimidating to some specially those trying them out first time but over time getting in and out becomes intuitive.
     
  8. Avahi29

    Avahi29 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2006
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    The Specialized comps have the "body geometry" design built into the footbed and I've heard some complain of comfort issues due to this. You could always try adjusting your straps, like the others said and maybe if that doens't help try using a different insole or try another shoe. I think the comps are also very stiff and if you're foot isn't use to that, it might make them tired too.
     
  9. John M

    John M New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2005
    Messages:
    1,404
    Likes Received:
    0
    Several good suggestions have been make. I just wanted to reiterate HD's comment that clipless ARE safer than toe clips/straps. With practice you can get in and out of the pedals faster, and the riding itself is safer as you have a much more secure interface between you and your bike, which means better balance and handling.

    For the type of riding that you seem to do (commuting, short tours), I would suggest sticking with a MTB/SPD type shoe because of the better walkability. As suggested you might consider one of the two-pedals with SPD on one side and a regular cage on the other for the occasional short jaunts you might make in street shoes.
     
  10. laffingbilly

    laffingbilly New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2005
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    0
    i would caveat clipless being safer than the powergrips, as the powergrips are not traditional toeclip straps that require you to reach down and loosen
     
  11. Avahi29

    Avahi29 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2006
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't know about clipless being safer than powergrips or straps (you can always have them loose, although granted you'll lose power), but they all offer something slightly different and you have to choose what you want.

    Clipless are good and, if you're confident with them, they're fine. Straps are easier to use in some ways but you either have to use them loose and lose power or be prepared to tighten/loosen them and deal with the safety issues of that. I'm assuming powergrips offer something in the middle of platform use and straps. However, they all have their limitations.

    From my experience you are limited in some ways with all of them. For instance, with clipless, even though I use trainer style cleated shores for commuting I don't find them comfortable enough to wear all day at work. This means I have to change my footwear if I want to nip out at lunch, as my pedals (shimano 520's) don't lend themselves to regular trainer usage. Yes I could go with the half and half design (I think they're shimano 324's) but I like the double sided design of the 520's, so that I'm not scrabbling to clip in when I'm pulling away from the lights. As I said it's about choices and choosing what's right for your own circumstances and what you want to use your bike for and sometimes where you want to use it.

    If platform is for you, then go with that and maybe use a trainer cycling shoe to make it a little easier (I wouldn't ever advise using a road shoe without clipless pedals they're just too specialised). Look at couriers, some of them use platforms as they're jumping on and off their bikes all day and it's easier, they've made a choice that suits them and you can't say they don't have experience.

    On a general note: Whatever choice you make, make it because it suits you and what you need, but not because others are snobbish about their choices and sneer at anything else.....we know it happens, and I'm not referring to this thread, just that some people get too precious about their own choices and the merits of them.

    Sorry for the long post.
     
  12. Scarpelli

    Scarpelli New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2003
    Messages:
    48
    Likes Received:
    1
    BTW, I love Sidi cycling shoes...great product...but Vittoria shoes are the most comfortable right out of the box, requiring no break-in, they're extremely light, and the carbon sole versions place your foot closer to the pedal. I've bought one pair per year for the past six years, and they're all I'll ride. Vittoria pricing is actually less than the "top" brands that are stiffer and weigh much more.

    Just an informed opinion. Don't shoot me... :p
     
  13. Avahi29

    Avahi29 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2006
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    None required. It sounds like a good idea and maybe when I come to replace mine I'll remember to check them out. I just wanted to point out that these forums are great but you have to take the info in them as a starting point and go with what suits you.
     
Loading...
Loading...