Barefoot bike pedals

Discussion in 'Barefoot & Minimalist Triathletes' started by Abide, Nov 10, 2010.

  1. Tristan

    Tristan
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    lol I forgot I said I'd review em! Well can't say my bike has seen much 'extended use' at all in the last year but I'll try and come up with something this week. Yeah they were pricey. It was one of those impulse buys. I didn't research other options, just saw them and was like cool barefootable pedals, click.
     
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  2. JEFF CT

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    Ok- well I tried out those Avenir Comfort Pedals yesterday. What a test! I got them in the mail (2 days before expected!) took out a wrench and changed the pedals on my way to the group bike ride. I got confused on which group was doing which route (big group) and I ended up with the 26 mile route instead of the 10.5 I had planned. The pedals worked great! This Sunday I pushed myself for speed, lots of hills. 15.6 mph avg. Tuesday night I tried the pedals and averaged 15.4 mph. Id say the route Tuesday was a little easier, but I didnt know the route as well and since it was a group ride there were stops. I would hit pause, but still had to slow down into the stop. Bottom line, I would say that I lost no power by riding barefoot (from this inaugural test). Oh yeah- it was hotter on Tuesday, high humidity and 84*F. For $10, I would highly recommend these.

    I feel so confident, that I plan to do the OLY in 3 weeks on these pedals. I just found out about a SPRINT in 7 days. I just got RD approval to race barefoot. (Its not against the rules, but I still felt it was good form to run it by RD).


    EDIT: I got lots of comments on the ride. I was trying to shy away from the attention a bit. Not because I dont like attention, but because I had little to say. Comments were, "wow! thats impressive!" and "Do you always ride barefoot?" and "why are you riding barefoot" and "that would be really impressive with clipless pedals" (I didnt get this one, but heard it twice. It would be impressive if I bought pedals that would be uncomfortable to ride on??)

    The reason I shied away from the comments a bit was because I have no experience riding barefoot (or at least I didnt) I dont know if its impressive or stupid yet (still dont) I cant say exactly WHY Im doing it. But my best response was along the lines of -'it'll make my T1 times fast. Also - "I rode a big hill with my regular pedals. Someone said 'thats impressive without having clipless' - I looked into clipless shoes ($80 for pedal and $80 more for shoes) and I couldnt find clear evidence that they are more efficient / effective, so I decided to go the other way.

    Lastly. I dont expect to be the fastest one out there. I wasnt before trying barefoot, so why would I be now? But I am really looking forward to winning the T2 race!
     
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  3. Tristan

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    So I've been looking for a road bike (not very actively) for a while. They were so expensive! And I didn't even know if I'd really use it much or even what to look for. Just recently I made the decision to just look on craigslist for a nice old used one. Had a friend that was giving me some advice on what to look for. Then just a few days ago I blew a tire on my mountain bike. After many many craigslists ads I finally found something that was decent, close by, inexpensive, and wasnt already sold. I went out and it seemed to fit me well enough so I forked over $80 for an '88 Schwinn LeTour. All original right down to the 25 yr old tires. And best I can tell everything is super tight and works great. Had it out today for its third voyage, and farthest I've been on a bike in recent years... about 16 miles.

    Actually I was going to put up a brief review on the pedals, but was waiting until I got a decent bike to try them on. Well I still don't know how to review a pedal, not being bike-savvy or anything like that. So I'll just post some pics and say what I do know about em.

    Ergon PC-2
    Well first off, they are pricey. I think I spent about 50 or $60 on amazon for the pair. I probably wouldnt have if I realized there was other barefoot pedal options at the time, it was kind of an impulse buy. But I am not disappointed!

    IMG_7915-800.JPG
    Here they are well used on my mountain bike.

    Note they have a nice sandpaper-like texture that helps keep the foot from slipping. Works pretty well, though I havent hit any huge bumps or holes. In that case I'm sure there is still a good chance my feet my fly off the pedal. There is also a raised side on the insides of them, to help keep your foot from slipping inward into the crank or gears. Its not all that big, the picture makes it seem bigger than it really is. But at least you can feel when your up against it for good positioning.

    I got the large size, and would definitely recommend large for anyone... my feet arent all that large (mens us size 9ish) and they fell the pedal just about perfect...

    IMG_7913-800.JPG

    I'm no pro cyclist so I don't know where it is optimal to place ones feet but I just place my forefoot over the sandpaper area like so, I can feel the front edge of the pedals a little under my first two toes usually.

    IMG_3980-800.JPG
    Compared to the original pedals on my mountain bike.

    IMG_7949-800.JPG
    And today I put them on my new old '88 LeTour. Did about 15-16mi after a 9mi run and they did great. They look way out of place on the 'vintage' bike, but oh well the fashion police can ticket me I guess I don't care.

    IMG_7949-960.JPG < bigger pic of the new bike. I don't know why I am so excited about an $80 bike but I just love it so far!

    Now, at least a duathalon seems in the realm of possibility :)
     
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  4. Longboard

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    Frame is a bit large for you but at that price who cares!
     
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  5. Tristan

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    Yeah when I actually measured it was slightly on the large side - my friend (and I dont know if he knows what he is talking about or not) said going slightly large on the frame for more comfort or small on the frame for more speed/race bike.. And more comfort is good by me! The guy that had it was actually a couple inches taller than me and had the seatpost burried... I actually raised it 1-2 inches. Thought was odd since my inseam I think is slightly less than average for my height, and torso I bit larger. My lower back has always been a trouble spot and can't bend very much at all so this position I was even worried about, but turns out to be ok so far, I dont think I could do the seat way higher than handlebars like some I've seen!
     
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  6. Josh16

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    Jeff, are you still satisfied with the pedals? I'm thinking about ordering a pair of them.
     
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  7. Tristan

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    One thing I've noticed about my Ergon's now that I've been putting some miles on them lately is that they are now making a squeegee sounding noise with each rotation. Sometimes its pretty annoyingly loud! :mad: I might order a set of those Avenir Comfort Pedals just to check em out, they are cheap enough.
     
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  8. Longboard

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    Is it coming from the pedal axle or the platform? If it's the axle maybe you can disassemble and service it.
     
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  9. Tristan

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    Pedal axle, and they say they arent servicable but I havent checked to see if I actually can.
     
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  10. Tristan

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    Ok so I found a temporary fix for the noisy pedal... I wore my earbuds yesterday and played music, didn't hear the pedal at all!
     
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  11. JEFF CT

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    Still very happy with them.
     
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  12. Tristan

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    I got and have been using the Avenir Comfort Pedals as well (just a couple short rides so far) so I'll do a comparison soon myself. I plan on getting some rides in next week so probably will review after that. I'm in the process of trying to get a warranty claim on the Ergon pedal.
     
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  13. Longboard

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  14. Barefoot TJ

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  15. Lomad

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    Reading back through this old thread because I'm reverting to more cyclist than runner, so I thought I'd add this: for those looking for a "true" cycling shoe (stiff for power transfer, disperse foot pressure off the metatarsal zone, etc), look up Bont cycling shoes. They are the Altra of cycling shoes; wide, foot shaped last, heat moldable for custom shaping, etc. they make road and mtb models, depending on your ride preferences. As with all things cycling, they're spendy, with point of entry being about $175.

    Only adding his as a couple posters were seeking such.the barefoot options are solid, but shoes as tools and all that...
     
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  16. Bare Lee

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    I got these, in case anyone is interested. I use them on regular platform pedals with strapless toe clips. I like the air flow of sandals with some protection for the feet in case I need to put them down on the asphalt in a hurry. Unfortunately, the sole of these sandals is unnecessarily thick. I think I prefer my Merrell Bare Access sneakers, even though the foot gets hot in there, the 'pedal feel' is better.
     
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  17. joe4702

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    Those are the cycling sandals I use as well, with Crank Bros Eggbeater clipless pedals on my road bike.
    Heavy and dorky looking, but stiff and have held up for over 2 years and 6000 miles so far.

    I modified them by cutting off the front toe cap/protector piece for better air flow.
    I wear them year round, with socks if temperature is below 60.

    I've had a number of inquiries about them while out riding.
     
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  18. Tristan

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    I've been debating trying to merge a lightwight platform pedal with a custom cut (foot shaped) carbon fiber plate. I'm plenty happy with the performance of the two platform pedals I've tried, but just wondering if I might be loosing some efficiency without the rigidness underfoot. And perhaps even experiment with pedal position, more centered (and perhaps adjustable). Sure seems like right under the ball of foot gives max performance, but at a duathlon or tri I think I might also benefit from not engaging the calves as much in the pedal and saving them for the run... might be worth some experimentation.
     
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  19. Bare Lee

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    I ended up returning the Nashbar sandals. Just too thick. Instead, I've sprung for the Ergon PC-2 pedals that Tristan has reviewed so well. I feel much more connected to my bike now. The pedals are designed well to place your foot in the right position without clips or straps. I wear a size 43-44 /10-10.5 shoe, and the large is a pretty good fit.

    I don't race or ride particularly fast, so these pedals used barefoot are perfect for me. I have over 12,000 miles on my current bike, and the chain has never come off, and the few times I've wiped out, I've always fallen hands first, so I don't think I'm adding much risk by forgoing shoes.

    I read on another thread that minimalism doesn't really apply to cycling. But I read somewhere in an article on cycling that the basic design of bicycles hasn't changed much since their inception, leading some to claim that the bicycle wasn't so much invented as "discovered." For me, it feels like a very natural activity, and riding barefoot just enhances that experience. I'm not anti-tech by any means. I just got the Romin Expert Gel split-crotch saddle, which is a big improvement over my old, unsplit saddle.

    So anyway, two thumbs up for the Ergon PC-2. I might swap them out for my old pedals once winter hits, but they're definitely a great three-season option for anyone interested in extending the barefoot experience to cycling.
     
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  20. Lomad

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    The sandals are really thick, but they also rely on the tiny platform of mountain bike pedals (if you go full cycle-douche like me with clipless pedals), which for me just don't work for a 50+ mile ride like I enjoy on the weekends. I found that shimano makes "roomy" (for a traditional cycling shoe) last in their road shoes that employ the larger platform triangular roadie cleats. I find I get full splay and wiggle room and zero hotspots or pain when I ride.

    Barefoot/super flexible shoes were not a good cycling option for me, with my overly flexible feet and collapsible arches; I need that rigid connection or I fatigue super fast.

    On my mountain bike I use giant spiky platform pedals and soft rubber soled shoes. I ride technical terrain in the Pacific Northwest and risk major injuries if I slip a pedal. Early generation Altras, like my instinct 1.5 and provisions are the killer application for that.
     

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