Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 08-06-10, 09:25 AM   #1
level76
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
level76's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 19
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'm tired of falling!

So I've been riding fairly consistently lately. Averaging around 25 miles per ride, 4 days a week. Mostly flat paved trail rides. But one thing that I have yet to full conquer is falling while using clipless pedals. I've fallen about 5 times now. 4 times while riding around my neighborhood, and once yesterday on the trail.

I think it's all mental, as I seem to panic when slowing down and somehow forget to unclip both legs. The fear of falling is so great that I'm hesitant to try and take on serious hills as I'm afraid of losing momentum and ultimately losing my balance.

Any advice for me on how to get over this. My body and my bike are tired of the scars.
level76 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 09:34 AM   #2
sojourn
Senior Member
 
sojourn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: San Marcos, CA
Bikes: Madone 6.2
Posts: 826
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Just keep at it....practice practice practice.....it was discouraging for me as well BUT I just kept trying and eventually....success! I couldn't imagine riding clipless, now I can't imagine riding any other way.
Hang in there, it will come.
__________________
sojourn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 09:44 AM   #3
abqtj
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Bikes: Specialized Allez
Posts: 95
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Loosen the setting on the pedals to a loose as they will go. It'll be way easier to pop out of them when you need to or panic, yet still hold you in without any problems.
abqtj is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 09:45 AM   #4
stonecrd
OnTheRoad or AtTheBeach
 
stonecrd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Weston, FL
Bikes: Ridley Noah RS, Scott CR1 Pro
Posts: 2,170
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
You don't normally need to clip out both feet. One is generally enough unless your getting off the bike then one at a time works, unclip a foot, stop, unclip the other foot.

I have been riding clipless for years now, I just put a new set of ultegra pedals on my bike and the adjustment was too tight. Now I always unclip on the left side first, in this case I couldn't get the left foot unclipped and it is so habitual for me to unclip left that my brain could not conceive of unclipping the right foot so I promptly fell over at my front door. It happens to everyone once in awhile
__________________
The problem with the gene pool is that there is no lifeguard and the shallow end is much too large

2013 Noah RS
stonecrd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 09:53 AM   #5
vdek
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Queens, NY
Bikes: 2010 CAAD9-5
Posts: 93
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Keep practicing! That's what I did and I stopped falling down with my bike.

Try to anticipate when you might want to unclip as well. I tend to unclip when I start braking for a stop.
vdek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 09:55 AM   #6
1nterceptor
LET'S ROLL
 
1nterceptor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: NEW YORK, NY - USA
Bikes: 2014 BMC Gran Fondo, 2013 Brompton S6L-X
Posts: 3,806
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 13 Post(s)
Decide if you want to put your left or right foot down when stopping.
Always use the same foot so it becomes a reflex.

Practice clipping and unclipping. Here's how I learned: I clip my right
foot in, lean my right shoulder against a wall. Clip my left foot in, spin
the pedals backwards then unclip. Repeat over and over.

Over 4 years of commuting in NYC using SPD's, haven't fallen yet.
1nterceptor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 10:16 AM   #7
sstorkel
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Bikes: Cervelo RS, Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Pro, Schwinn Typhoon, Nashbar touring, custom steel MTB
Posts: 5,424
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by level76 View Post
Any advice for me on how to get over this. My body and my bike are tired of the scars.
What type of pedals are you using? Back when I was using Crank Brothers pedals on my mountain bike, I fell over a lot. For me, they required too much heel movement before they'd release. I switched to Shimano SPD pedals, specifically the M520, and have far fewer problems. They have adjustable release tension as well as the SH-56 "multi-release" cleats which make them very beginner friendly. Another nice thing about SPD pedals is that you can unclip early, shift your foot on the pedal slightly (so that you don't clip in again), and still pedal pretty effectively.

On the street, I find that it pays to unclip early and often. If you're just riding down the road, stop pedaling for a second, unclip, clip back in, and keep going. I always put my left foot down when I stop, so that's the one I practice clipping and unclipping the most. When riding on the street, I tend to unclip early and coast to a stop. There's nothing that says you have to roll to a stop clipped-in, do a track stand for 20 seconds, then unclip just as you're about to fall over...
sstorkel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 10:21 AM   #8
brockd15 
Senior Member
 
brockd15's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
Bikes:
Posts: 1,463
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
^^^
What they said...
There's normally no need to unclip both feet (maybe if you're crashing and trying to bail out??). That probably causes more problems actually. When you're coasting to a stop just unclip the foot you want on the ground (right foot for me) and put your other foot at the bottom of the pedal stroke, so that both feet are down. Then when you're actually stopping, don't keep the bike vertical, that makes it too easy for it to fall the wrong direction. Just lean it a little to the side of your unclipped foot. And of course you want to be off the saddle when you're leaning and putting your foot on the ground.
brockd15 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 10:32 AM   #9
level76
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
level76's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 19
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'm using Shimano Ultegra PD-6700 SPD-SL Pedals.

Yesterdays fall was particularly frustrating in that I had already come to a stop and was balancing on my right, unclipped foot. My left foot had yet to come out but for some reason I decided to lean to my left and of course I fell. This is why I think it's mostly a mental thing. I need to start focusing better. I was kinda exhausted when I stopped so I think my brain just wasn't where it should've been.
level76 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 11:08 AM   #10
CraigB
Starting over
 
CraigB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Indianapolis
Bikes: 1990 Trek 1500; 2006 Gary Fisher Marlin; 2011 Cannondale Synapse Alloy 105; 2012 Catrike Trail
Posts: 4,081
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
As vdeck said, anticipation is key. Every time you have a planned (non-emergency) stop, you should be preparing to unclip well before the bike comes to a halt. If you make a point of concentrating on that, it should become second nature in pretty short order. Consistency in choosing which foot you will plant helps a lot too. It removes at least one variable from the equation. I like to release my right and keep the left clipped in when at stoplights and intersections, but that's just me.
CraigB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 12:55 PM   #11
njkayaker
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 9,478
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 36 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by level76 View Post
I'm using Shimano Ultegra PD-6700 SPD-SL Pedals.

Yesterdays fall was particularly frustrating in that I had already come to a stop and was balancing on my right, unclipped foot. My left foot had yet to come out but for some reason I decided to lean to my left and of course I fell. This is why I think it's mostly a mental thing. I need to start focusing better. I was kinda exhausted when I stopped so I think my brain just wasn't where it should've been.
Were you still sitting on the seat when you leaned over?

http://sheldonbrown.com/starting.html
njkayaker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 07:45 PM   #12
StephenH
Uber Goober
 
StephenH's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Dallas area, Texas
Bikes:
Posts: 11,227
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
My two cents: If you're fairly new to riding, just switch back to platform pedals a while and be done with it until you get lots more miles in. Clipless pedals are good and all that, but they're not such a huge improvement that you can't do without them, either.

I recently switched to clipless and have yet to fall. There have been two or three times when I almost fell but flailed my legs enough to unclip before doing so. Loosening up the tension might help you there.

Some things that I think helped me were learning to ride a unicycle and practicing slowing down, stopping or almost stopping, and taking back off with platform pedals, without putting my feet down. And riding real real slow in a parking lot. I didn't intentionally do those things with clipless pedals in mind, just sort of goofing off while riding.
__________________
"be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."
StephenH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-10, 12:00 AM   #13
Nola_Gal
Senior Member
 
Nola_Gal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: New Orleans
Bikes: Cannondale CAAD9 5
Posts: 298
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I bought my Look Keo's not long after buying my Cannondale and it wasn't long until I gave up on it before I got hurt! I spent almost a year riding on and off with platform pedals until I was really comfortable with the bike itself. At that point I went to spd's the 'multi-release' cleats that are beginner friendly. Some people say they don't make a difference. I find them easier to unclip. I've been riding for months now without falling. I think part of it was just developing the muscle strength/experience to be able to balance the bike without having to think about it. The other is that I think the spd's are easier and the set-up does allow me to clip out a little early and take a couple of pedal strokes to my stopping point.
Nola_Gal is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:14 AM.