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

Go Back   > >

Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

User Tag List

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 08-12-07, 08:36 PM   #1
Macro Geek
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Bikes: True North tourer (, 2004; Miyata 1000, 1985
Posts: 1,281
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Numbness in foot

When I ride for extended periods, the bottom of my right foot, under the cleat, gets numb. I am wearing Shimano mountain bike shoes with cleats/SPD pedals. I have been using the combo consistently for the past three years. The problem has been present from the beginning, although the bottom of my foot seems to get numb more quickly this summer. The numbness passes after a few minutes when I rest, but it is a nuisance and an irritant!

The cleats were positioned by a kinesiologist/bike racer who really seemed to know what she was doing. (In fact, her adjustments caused a 20 year knee problem to disappear.) I have little doubt that the cleats are in the "correct" position.

So, what are the possible causes of foot numbness under the cleat?
acantor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-07, 08:43 PM   #2
Senior Member
ricohman's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Saskatchewan
Posts: 2,465
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Tarsal tunnel syndrome.
But you may have entrapment of the nerve along the plantar region of your foot.
My small toe and the one beside it often go numb. After a few pairs of shoes I think I have it to a minimum.
You can get rid of the symptoms but not the cause, which unfortunately is genetics.
ricohman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-07, 10:17 PM   #3
Senior Member
arrasmithf's Avatar
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 76
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My feet and toes would go numb during medium to long rides. After much research, I bought a Brooks saddle, and no more numbness. It could be that you need a stiffer shoe, although i didn't try this because the saddle cleared up my problem.
arrasmithf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-07, 10:24 PM   #4
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 5,115
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
You could also try more spinning, if by chance you don't already. It makes a difference as to the period you have direct pressure on the foot.
NoReg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-07, 12:36 AM   #5
Hooked on Touring
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Wyoming
Posts: 2,445
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 93 Post(s)
Or toe clips -

I have done some long touring days in 20 years - 125 miles on occasion.
Done quite a few touring centuries simply because I was stupid and didn't know when to stop.
I found that if I got numbness - even using toe clips - if I took my foot out of the clip and flipped the pedal - moved my foot significantly forward or back - with very easy spinning - the pain/numbness would go away.

Besides tarsal tunnel - there is also repeated motion stress/injury.
by changing foot position dramatically - beyond what toe clips and certainly clipless would allow -
the points of pressure were relieved.
I'm guessing that I might lose 25% to 35% efficiency -
And you sure can't do the above climbing a mountain pass.
But if it's late in the day and you are just toodling along -
It's a great way of giving your footsies a break.

PS - I also change out my cycling shoes into my Tevas late in the day.
Pedalling on the flip side of the toe clips.
I swear - I can hear my feet saying, "Thank you, thank you!"
jamawani is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-07, 04:44 AM   #6
Occasional poster
countrydirt's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Pueblo, CO
Bikes: Miyata Trail, Giant Kronos
Posts: 286
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
You might have someone help you check the positioning of your saddle. Perhaps a skosh high or the fore to aft may be off a bit.
countrydirt is offline   Reply With Quote

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 05:45 PM.

  • Ask a Question
    get answers from real people!
Click to start entering your question.