Hello all - I am new to this forum. I ride a road bike: Specialized Alez circa 2001 every day, rain or shine to work, Of course my commute is easy - 2 miles each way...but hey, I come home for lunch every day too! Life is good.
I have a question. I am going to get some clipless pedals for the longer weekend rides and I would love to hear what you guys think which ones you like and why. I have read that I can expect to fall getting used to it. I would like something that is easy to release when you come to a stop.
I currently have Specialized Sanoma shoes that have 4 holes in the bottom (like 4 on a dice).
A quick search indicated that the Specialized Sonoma is designed for Shimano SPD-style cleats. That type is usually associated with MTBs but it still might not be a bad choice. I ride a hybrid mostly on bike paths and use Shimano M520L SPD pedals. They are easy to unclip but might require an occasional lubrication to keep them from sticking.
I have never really used any style other than STD so I can't really give all of the advantages and disadvantages. For my purposes, the big advantage of MTB-style shoes is that the cleats are recessed so you can walk in them. Road clipless shoes can be very awkward if you expect to get off the bike and walk a little ways in the middle of a ride. A few road bikers who I know use STD pedals for that reason.
You can probably expect to fall a couple of times, I certainly did. My problem wasn't forgetting to unclip, I would unclip and then put my foot down and accidentally clip back in. Now I pedal with a different part of my foot after unclipping.
I do like the clipless pedals. I'm not performance oriented but I find being able to apply power for the entire stroke seems to be less stressful to my legs. I've ridden over 5000 miles so far this year, none of it in the winter.
Hey, thanks for the quick response. I will check the SPD's out. I had heard that Freeplay Frog pedals were good but I am afraid that the clip wont fit on the shoe. Also, what is MTB?
(I am glad you got that STD cleared up!)
Speedplay Frog cleats should fit on your shoes. They use the same bolt pattern as SPDs. Depending on the lug pattern on your shoe you may need to trim the lugs a bit, but that's considered par for the course. Frogs will be lighter than most SPD pedals and will have more free float (ability to rotate your foot from side to side without unclipping). Whether you like or want more float is hard say without some firsthand experience.