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Old 01-13-14, 04:13 PM   #1
Daspydyr 
Pedals, Paddles and Poles
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Flat vs Clipless pedals, from a strength trainer and avid Mountain biker

http://www.bikejames.com/strength/th...h-flat-pedals/

Fist I am not promoting or endorsing this author. I have benefited from reading and applying some of his principles of strength training and riding technique. I find his observations from 10 years of riding to parallel mine. I do have to say though, that there are times when I am clipped in that I definitely believe that I have generated some extra power on the upstroke of the pedal stroke.

I would like to hear some healthy ideas, what say you. Especially some of you racing dudes.
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Old 01-13-14, 04:58 PM   #2
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I used to reserve my use of clipless strictly for XC racing. I never got comfortable using them for DH racing and stuck to platforms for that. As the years have gone by, I decided that I not only like platforms better for trail and DH, I just like them better period. So i switched to using them for XC racing too and have done two full seasons strictly platform. I honestly feel I give up very little and if I do, it's more than made up for with the feeling of control I have on platforms.
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Old 01-13-14, 08:03 PM   #3
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Hi OP,
I have been on clipless (SPD-R) since my roadie years, over 10 years ago. When I shifted to XC, I was all clipless (SPD). Last year, I started going platform when I discovered it was difficult, despite my long experience with being clipped in, when riding technical trails. So I was forced to go platform.

I felt I lost a lot of power, and I definitely struggled in the climbs. I'd loose my footing on the pedals from time to time (when I forget I am not clipped in) because I was so used to pulling. I used my regular MTB cycling shoes with the cleats removed and the cover attached to the shoes.

But when I was introduced to Five.Ten platform shoes, all was changed. Feels like being clipped in but not.
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Old 01-14-14, 02:41 PM   #4
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Everytime I go into the LBS, I get the same question over and over again - when are you switching to clipless? I don't think I ever will as I love just being able to jump on the bike and go - dab a foot if I take a corner too fast - switch bikes with riding buddies to change things up. I think if anyone wants to go ride clipless, more power to them, but I think I will stick with my Origin8's UL's thank you very much.
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Old 01-14-14, 08:31 PM   #5
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I got the cheap shimano spd pedals when I first got my bike, think they were the m-520s and I fell constantly. Then I switched to spank spikes and five tens and did much better. I'm still a noob in every sense of the word, but I find the platforms easier to work with and I have more confidence on the bike. It feels weird to not be clipped in though.
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Old 01-14-14, 08:41 PM   #6
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I prefer platforms.
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Old 01-14-14, 11:52 PM   #7
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Granted I'm a mountain biking noob, but I have a hard time imagining that I'd ever want to be clipped in while offroad--seems counter-intuitive to me(having never tried it of course). I do love my Five Tens with my VP Gripster pedals--I feel as stuck as I think I'd ever wanna be!
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Old 01-16-14, 01:13 AM   #8
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As a hardcore urban rider, bmx eggbeaters are the only choice for any of my rides. Especially since all bikes are taken to the skate park for practice.
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Old 01-16-14, 01:58 AM   #9
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I ride both. I prefer clipless though. I actually crash less because I climb better and my outside foot feels like it transfers more force into teh bike during corners. Maybe if I had better platforms and specific shoes I would change my mind.
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Old 01-16-14, 03:24 AM   #10
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I train for and race XC, so I prefer SPDs. They make a huge diff for me on flats or climbs when sprinting out of the saddle (I'm running a 1 x 10). I ride some pretty technical stuff with them. The best thing I got is a remote dropper post. The extra 6 oz is worth the huge speed and control increase. I agree with slowride above--I can really weight that outside pedal in turns.
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Old 01-16-14, 07:49 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikeme View Post
I train for and race XC, so I prefer SPDs. They make a huge diff for me on flats or climbs when sprinting out of the saddle (I'm running a 1 x 10). I ride some pretty technical stuff with them. The best thing I got is a remote dropper post. The extra 6 oz is worth the huge speed and control increase. I agree with slowride above--I can really weight that outside pedal in turns.
I agree with you completely. Being clipped in is more efficient, and if only I had the skill (and the guts) to go all the way clipless on technical trails, I would -- but I had too many close calls (although able to unclip on time)... and witnessed too many riders who fell because they couldn't release from the pedal..

When I was still going clipless on technical rides, I find myself unclipping my right foot while going over rough and slippery sections.. this is a bad habit I developed because I was scared. With the 5.10 and Origin8 pedals, I have more confidence and able to go faster.
They say using multiple release cleats help, but I have no experience.

The KS LEV dropper is probably the best addition to my bike; brings confidence.. but this is another story.
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Old 01-16-14, 07:58 PM   #12
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Platforms only. I crash when I'm clipped to my pedals.
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Old 01-17-14, 01:48 PM   #13
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Thank crew, for the most part I have had the same experience as the pinned platform crew. A recent trip to Cottonwood Canyon in an area I had never ridden before goofed me up. I was okay on downhill sections (XC Style trail) but getting out of the saddle on really rocky ascents had me falling off the pedals. And I have a good pair of 5/10 with Odyssey oreos.

But I blame it on riding my road bike too much. Seriously I can handle most anything at Bootleg, but Cottonwood kicked me around.
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Old 01-18-14, 01:59 AM   #14
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I like being attached to the bike, I hate not having my feet clipped in.

In my mind, your riding the bike. and you can only do that well if your firmly attached to it, I'll take the occasional spill caused by not getting my foot of quickly enough any day. If your going to crash, having your feet cliped in will not change that, the ground is hard either way.
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