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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    North Vancouver, BC
    Posts
    43

    Making most of clipless

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    Okay, so I got my first road bike and went with clipless. I figured I'd just do it right from the start. I'm an avid biker otherwise, so I feel pretty comfortable on a bike regardless of what kind it is. My question is though, how do I get the most out of the clipless. I feel like the only advantage that I'm really getting from them is when I start on an uphill from a near stop position. It's easier to get going at first since I can power through that little section that would otherwise depend on momentum. But apart from that, I don't feel like it's making that big of a difference. Is there some technique that I'm missing here?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    SW Ohio
    Posts
    145
    Make sure you realize that you can also pull upward on your pedals now, when you are clipped in. That means that you can use both legs for a full stroke, rather than concentrating on alternating hard pushes downward.

    I find clipless especially beneficial on hills, since I can pull upward as well as push downward. Keeps my cadence a little higher to keep me moving forward!
    “Hope is the thing with feathers, that perches in the soul, and sings the tune without words, and never stops at all.”
    - Emily Dickinson

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Limbo
    Posts
    8,769
    Quote Originally Posted by artifactos View Post
    Make sure you realize that you can also pull upward on your pedals now, when you are clipped in. That means that you can use both legs for a full stroke, rather than concentrating on alternating hard pushes downward.
    I don't think most riders really use clipless pedals for more than uphill.

    Note the qualifier "most"

    Also see http://www.rivbike.com/article/clothing/the_shoes_ruse
    2008 Trek FX 7.2/Terry Cite X
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    2010 Trek FX 7.6 WSD/stock bontrager

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Newport, RI
    Posts
    3,821
    Have you tried pedaling with just one leg? If you have any dead spots, you'll see them more clearly.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    So Cal.
    Posts
    501
    Clipless, if properly setup (cleat/foot position, shoe choice, pedal choice) allows the user to stop thinking about how their feet are positoned (it is always correct). For me, this has meant tossing my hated toe-clips. and heavy pedals. As was mentioned already, you can 'scrape' motion at the bottom of the stroke and pull up. Think circles. Now you are putting more power into the crank rotation. At least, you are not having to push up the weight of your upward moving leg with your downward one because you can pull or lift it up. I try to do the full rotation; push forward at the top, then forward/down then down, down/back, back, back/up, up, up/forward. Talk about muscle groups! When I do this I can really feel the workout and I pick up a little speed. When I get tired and forget and start pedal mashing I look and feel even more like the klutz I am. It's about being efficient and graceful. LOL not me but I try and I can't blame the equipment!
    Tzvia- rollin' slow...
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Derby, UK
    Posts
    46
    Clipless are a great help when you're spinning high cadences, stop the almost subconscious effort it takes to keep your feet properly positioned on the pedal.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Boise, Idaho
    Posts
    1,104
    My first few clipless rides, I noticed in my butt.

    After that, I didn't really notice that I was "using" the clipless pedals to any special effect until one day I got on my other bike -- with its flat pedals -- and OH MY GOSH!

    DH was using his clipless pedals, and he took off like a bat out of somewhere. All I could think was "NO FAIR!" And I hollered that after him. First he laughed, then he unclipped, rode a little ways, and said, oh, wow!

    Karen in Boise

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    North Vancouver, BC
    Posts
    43
    Well I have to say that I never worried about proper foot placement... that I just did naturally. So maybe what you're saying is true... that I'm just not realizing the benefit. Which I could see since I've never ridden this bike without them. Maybe I should throw on some platforms just so I can appreciate the difference.

    Oh and for the record, I had to look up what "DH" meant. I see a lot of people use it on these forums and I knew it had something to do with husbands. I just assumed it meant "damn husband." haha. That tells you what kind of family I grew up in.

 

 

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