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Old 05-20-10, 10:00 AM   #1
Long Run Nick
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How to avoid "Laugh In" falls when coming to a stop.

At 66, and 12 yrs not riding at all, I bought a new Trek FX7.3 and have put more than 300 miles on it in 2 weeks. That has been fun and I wonder why I stopped riding over a decade ago.
The problem: I have fallen 2x when coming to a stop. I get my right foot unclipped and am easing to a stop. I seem to lose my balance and begin to tip to the left and can't get my left foot unclipped and bang. Fortunately, just some bruises--knee/elbow. Suggestions welcome.

I have averaged over 40 miles per week of running over the last 34 yrs. Actually, the last couple of yrs over 50 miles per week. I am surprised I have been able to ride as much as I have (several 40 milers and a 50 miler) in just a couple of weeks. The falling off is not fun. I have busted a couple of handle grip mirrors. Help. Thanks. Nick
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Old 05-20-10, 10:07 AM   #2
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I think you have probably gotten yourself pretty nervous now when coming to a stop - am I going to dab or splat?
So maybe what I would try is, as you are coming just about to a stop - lean the bike just a little bit over to the side you want to dab.
The only time I have had the problem you describe is when I have tried to stop where I am going across an incline. and I try to dab on the low side and the bike wants to go over on the high side.
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Old 05-20-10, 10:20 AM   #3
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We tried to tell you that all the running was bad for you. You've obviously traumatized your brain stem clip-out center. There's nothing to be done.

Seriously, agree that at this point it's becoming mental. Visualize yourself doing it correctly over and over and see if that doesn't help.
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Old 05-20-10, 10:21 AM   #4
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Just before you come to a complete stop, turn your handlebars to the left a little and the bike will lean to the right.
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Old 05-20-10, 11:14 AM   #5
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Switch to toe clips. Recreational riders do not need to be clipped in. You'll also save money on expensive pedals and on shoes that are a pain in the ass to walk in.
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Old 05-20-10, 11:28 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Long Run Nick View Post
At 66, and 12 yrs not riding at all, I bought a new Trek FX7.3 and have put more than 300 miles on it in 2 weeks. That has been fun and I wonder why I stopped riding over a decade ago.
The problem: I have fallen 2x when coming to a stop. I get my right foot unclipped and am easing to a stop. I seem to lose my balance and begin to tip to the left and can't get my left foot unclipped and bang. Fortunately, just some bruises--knee/elbow. Suggestions welcome.

I have averaged over 40 miles per week of running over the last 34 yrs. Actually, the last couple of yrs over 50 miles per week. I am surprised I have been able to ride as much as I have (several 40 milers and a 50 miler) in just a couple of weeks. The falling off is not fun. I have busted a couple of handle grip mirrors. Help. Thanks. Nick
Simple, unclip on BOTH sides when coming to a stop, rest the back of the unused foot on top of the pedal, if you start to fall the wrong way, then you can put your other foot out. You do this until you find your not going the wrong way anymore
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Old 05-20-10, 11:47 AM   #7
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switch to toe clips. Recreational riders do not need to be clipped in. You'll also save money on expensive pedals and on shoes that are a pain in the ass to walk in.
HERESY!!!!!, but I agree.
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Old 05-20-10, 11:52 AM   #8
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i've come close to falling at stop lights, in toeclips.
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Old 05-20-10, 12:12 PM   #9
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Consciously lean toward the unclipped foot, so that foot has to step down to hold you up. One way to make sure you do this is to steer toward the clipped foot side. So if you unclip your right foot, as you come to a stop, steer a bit to your left and lean toward your right. Boom- you'll fall over if you don't put your right foot down, just the way you want it.

Practice this several times until it becomes second nature. Once you master it one side, do it for the other until your brain just makes all the right adjustments for the foot you're unclipping.
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Old 05-20-10, 12:32 PM   #10
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Falls resulting from clippless pedals come 3's, so after your next mishap you'll be good to go for a while.
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Old 05-20-10, 12:49 PM   #11
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Pointless writing about the falls- We still need an active pic of the fall in progress. (Extra Points if you get one)

Contact Mad Max for an entry into Cub Tombay as I think you might qualify.
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Old 05-20-10, 02:27 PM   #12
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Thanks for the suggestions. Very helpful. The lean and visualizing seems to work. To nail down #3, I just went out in my driveway and fell down. In my over 71,4xx miles of running I have tripped,fallen,been run of the road and had to dive to avoid getting whacked 5-6 x. Based on that, it appears running may be a little safer. Again, thanks for the responses. Nick
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Old 05-20-10, 02:38 PM   #13
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Falling 2 or 3 times is the minimum required by F.R.E.D. when learning to use clip in pedals. I believe the norm is the square root of your age.
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Old 05-20-10, 02:46 PM   #14
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Honestly, is there anyone who has made the transition to clipless without at least one "Artie Johnson"?
One of the funniest things I ever saw was this kid who used to come into my shop all the time. He was about 14 at the time, and always full of questions. He was always saving his money for the next bike related purchase, and one day he decided he wanted to go clipless.
So he saved up, and bought a set of pedals and shoes from me, and I helped him install and set up.
The next day, he pulled up right outside the door and did a perfect tip over right there, both feet still attached to the pedals.
I ended up giving that kid a job not long after that.
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Old 05-20-10, 02:52 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Long Run Nick View Post
Thanks for the suggestions. Very helpful. The lean and visualizing seems to work. To nail down #3, I just went out in my driveway and fell down. In my over 71,4xx miles of running I have tripped,fallen,been run of the road and had to dive to avoid getting whacked 5-6 x. Based on that, it appears running may be a little safer. Again, thanks for the responses. Nick
Okay, I made one suggestion, here is another one, get a set of cheap BMX platform pedals and a pedal wrench. Take off the clipless pedals and put on the BMX ones, when you get your riding in good shape, so that your not freaked out by stopping, take off the BMX pedal on the side you always tend to tilt over on, this could be right or left, some people are right handed, but prefer their left foot. Then you get used to clipping in and out on your preferred side, when you get this down well, you put the other clipless pedal on. You have resolved your problem. A lot of folks find that clipless, and toe clips are overrated for a hybrid bike. I tried clips on my MTB and didn't like it, will probably put them on my road bike when I get finished rebuilding it.
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Old 05-20-10, 02:59 PM   #16
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Hey Nick, Dan Burkhart is correct, it's some weird rite of passage, like colonoscopy and prostate exams, that we must all endure.

My favorite clipped in story was when clips were new to me (of course), I thought I was going to be cool and scare someone who was standing by a bike rack by going into a power skid next to them.

It was pretty cool but I had forgotten I was clipped in, so when I lost momentum I fell over right into the bike rack.

I wish someone had video'd that. It probably would have gone viral on You-tube.
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Old 05-20-10, 03:11 PM   #17
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Please don't take jackb's advice. I'm sure his heart is in the right place but once you get unconscious about clipping out the advantages of clipless pedals are abundant. Plus if memory serves to do toe clips right you get a little grooved plate for your shoe and pull your strap nice and tight which guarantees a fall or a twisted ankle. Or you get sore toes from pulling up with them.

Did you mention the pedal system you are using? Just curious.
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Old 05-20-10, 03:14 PM   #18
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Your application to club tombay is in the mail. Welcome.



Unclip both feet, even after you learn how to be perfect. In my last Tombay fall, I was unclipped on the left side and standing on my left foot........that's when the ped knocked me over on my right side. As I said, welcome. You will enjoy the pedals once you become used to them.
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Old 05-20-10, 04:08 PM   #19
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Simple, unclip on BOTH sides when coming to a stop, rest the back of the unused foot on top of the pedal, if you start to fall the wrong way, then you can put your other foot out. You do this until you find your not going the wrong way anymore
I've never fallen all the way (really! a few panic moments, though), but a few times when clipless pedals were new, I unclipped coming up to a stop, resting my unclipped foot on the pedal (spd). It clipped in by itself without me knowing. I managed each time to yank the foot out, but I was at least 45 degrees tilted over. So then I ended up with a strained leg, instead of a bruise.

So, be careful about how you rest the clipped out foot on the pedal.

At some point, the unclipping motion is automatic. I don't think about it anymore, and can be clipped in both feet as I roll to a stop, and unclip as easily as if I have a platform pedal.
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Old 05-20-10, 04:11 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Dan Burkhart View Post
Honestly, is there anyone who has made the transition to clipless without at least one "Artie Johnson"?
.
(Raises hand.) But, I had the advantage of a couple of decades of riding with toe clips and then powergrips. I assume that the OP is a 'virgin' with respect to foot retention devices.
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Old 05-20-10, 05:56 PM   #21
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+Many,,, on the toe clips...(or use regular pedals......) last time I "tombayed" was with toe clips and cleats.. (in the 80s...)Bud
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Old 05-20-10, 06:31 PM   #22
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Honestly, is there anyone who has made the transition to clipless without at least one "Artie Johnson"?
Second hand up.
And I went straight to speed plays. Never looked back, or tombay'd in the 15yrs I have been using them.
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Old 05-20-10, 06:56 PM   #23
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Honestly, is there anyone who has made the transition to clipless without at least one "Artie Johnson"?
Not me (I've had a couple) but my wife has made it over 2 years so far without a fall.
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Old 05-20-10, 07:05 PM   #24
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I think the biggest factor to falling is going to slow before you unclip.
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Old 05-20-10, 07:08 PM   #25
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I don't agree with those advising switching back to platform pedals or toe clips. You've already invested time and skin into the process of learning to use clipless. No sense backing up. You'll soon get the hang of it.

Disengaging both feet never worked for me. Trying to rest the unengaged foot on the pedal always seemed very unstable and I could easily see it causing an accident. Press on. Master the skill and don't look back.
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