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Advice for mom that knows nothing!

Old 05-17-24, 08:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Shelbyhed
so…clipless is still a pedal that the shoe attaches to?
shoe and pedal combo but one does not have to CLIP IN a shoe to use the pedal

Originally Posted by Steve B.
What a lot of the competitive athletes do with their clipless shoes, is leave them mounted on the pedal in the transition area. When they come off the swim, they change into whatever bike clothing is needed, then run in socks or barefoot with the bike to the point where they can mount the mount the bike, then slip their feet into the shoes and tighten up while pedaling slowly. Then off they go on the bike leg. This does save some time, but if only competing for fun, I would just sit and put the shoes on in the transition area. Having the SPD type shoe makes it easier to run to the bike start.
Been 10 years since my last triathlon that just happened to also be my last Ironman and I remember at some races a no mounting shoes RULE. Also recall when I did mount the shoes I used a rubber band off the chainstay and crank arm to keep the shoe horizontal and easy to enter while running to transition exit.

slowtwitch.com was always a great tri info source for me
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Old 05-17-24, 08:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Shelbyhed
so…clipless is still a pedal that the shoe attaches to?
Yes, the term is an anomaly, due to the more cumbersome previous system being referred to as toe clips.

With clipless, you get a shoe that has place in the bottom for a metal cleat to attach to. You then attach the cleat that works with your pedal to the shoe. Usually the shoe can accommodate a variety of different cleats. Most commonly you would attach an SPD cleat that is designed to link to an SPD pedal. There is an incompatible version called SPD SL, so you don't want to be fooled by that, and a rival brand called LOOK that is also incompatible. So you find out what kind of pedal the bike has (most commonly SPD, I believe) and go from there.

Usually when you step on the clipless pedal, things are lined up so the cleat immediately slides into the receptacle and locks in place. To release, you have to swing your heel sideways away from the bike. It takes a little while before you learn to do it automatically. The shoes have very stiff soles under the front half of the foot, because there's a very small area of contact between the pedal and shoe, and you want to spread the weight to more of your foot.

Pedals that don't attach to your foot are simply called flat or maybe platform pedals. They can have rubber treads or a kind of a metal grate. You could use any shoe, but probably not one with a really thin sole, if your pedal is like a metal grate, as you might feel it through the sole, and not a really slippery sole, so your foot won't slide off the pedal which can injure you. So no leather soled ballroom oxfords!

Some clipless shoes have extra thick tread on both sides of the cleat to make it easier to walk without slipping on the cleat or gouging the floor, and probably many triathletes use those, as you have to run a few yards with the bike at the start and end of that leg of the race.

I'm sure a lot of amateur and casual triathletes use flat pedals and bike in their running shoes (I did) but serious competitors would have different shoes for those two legs of the race.

Last edited by cooker; 05-17-24 at 08:43 PM.
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Old 05-23-24, 06:42 AM
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In response to the pedal discussion…
First I want to comment that if/when you go clipless…using them takes a bit of practice. Clicking in/out while rolling can be dicey if you haven’t done it. You certainly wouldn’t want the first time you use them to be in a race situation. I have an old set of clipless pedal adapters wherein a clipless cleat could be mounted on the adapter…which functioned somewhat like an old style toeclip pedal, and I could wear my running shoes to cycle in, and still be “clicked” into the pedal. Using them eliminated a shoe change in transition. I like them, but they never were very popular. And, with regard to the various pedal brands, styles, and formats…the LOOK brand that someone mentioned above actually has two formats — LOOK Delta, and the LOOK Neo. Although LOOK doesn’t make the Delta format anymore, you can still get new, third party, LOOK Delta format pedals and cleats (the format is popular with the ‘spinning’ community). The Delta and Neo formats are not compatible.

Dan
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Old 05-26-24, 11:54 AM
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Yes, reinforcing what others have said. Clicking in is easy, clicking out has to be learned. I now remember I practised leaning against a wall, or holding the handrails of a wheelchair ramp until I could release my foot without having to think about it, and I still fell at least once.
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Old 05-26-24, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by cooker
Yes, reinforcing what others have said. Clicking in is easy, clicking out has to be learned. I now remember I practised leaning against a wall, or holding the handrails of a wheelchair ramp until I could release my foot without having to think about it, and I still fell at least once.
Typical advice is ride around on a grassy area, where falling won’t hurt much. Practice clipping and and out.
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Old 05-28-24, 03:55 PM
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Or, just forgo them all together. Data suggests clipping in, short of elite level competition, has virtually no performance value. It's a matter of personal taste. Some people like the feeling of being "connected" to the bike. I'm quite happy just flat pedaling along.

I do admit I get some odd looks from people when I show up on my Shiv and flat pedals, but I'm beyond caring about what others think.
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Old 05-28-24, 05:43 PM
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Originally Posted by VegasJen
Or, just forgo them all together. Data suggests clipping in, short of elite level competition, has virtually no performance value. It's a matter of personal taste. Some people like the feeling of being "connected" to the bike. I'm quite happy just flat pedaling along.

I do admit I get some odd looks from people when I show up on my Shiv and flat pedals, but I'm beyond caring about what others think.
Certainly if the bike already has flat pedals, that would be easiest for now.
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Old 05-28-24, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by cooker
Certainly if the bike already has flat pedals, that would be easiest for now.
Honestly, even if it doesn't, flat pedals may be a better solution in the interim. Consider a decent quality set of clip in shoes to a pair of flat pedals, not to mention the learning curve involved with using them. Also factor in the intended rider is still young and may grow out of a new shoe in a year or two.

I'm not saying people who are comfortable with clip ins should abandon them. If you like your clip in pedals, you can keep your clip in pedals. I'm just looking more at the big picture. For a young rider just getting into the sport, put off that investment for a year or two. That's all I'm saying.
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