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Shoe choices

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Jun 19, 2009
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BroDeal said:
That is a totally different question. The OP did not post that he had a problem, for example, with the outside of his right foot, it was killing him on long rides, and he wanted to know if custom shoes might fix the problem. He was worried that he might be giving up some benefit of his hard won fitness by not buying magic shoes.

I ride with a couple people who have custom shoes, D2s and Rocket7s. One, I think, bought purely just to spend the money and tell people about it. The other had problems for years and he is extremely happy with his shoes. I think the real issue for the latter rider is that he has different sized feet. Which brings up the question why is it not easy to get each shoe of a pair in a different size? Neither rider is pushing a few, or even one, gear higher, though.

Right on. Alot of people blame their shoes when their saddle height/angle, stem lenght and other stuff are way off. They all go together. If this guy is taking a leap from beartrap pedals he might start out with a qualified fit and reasonably priced shoes. Until he can drill the peloton with reasonably priced shoes (and maybe orthotics) the expense of the shoe will not contribute to much.
 
Jul 4, 2009
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Oldman said:
Right on. Alot of people blame their shoes when their saddle height/angle, stem lenght and other stuff are way off. They all go together. If this guy is taking a leap from beartrap pedals he might start out with a qualified fit and reasonably priced shoes. Until he can drill the peloton with reasonably priced shoes (and maybe orthotics) the expense of the shoe will not contribute to much.

So many people blame shoes, saddles, and etc. on an issue that they are having but fail to address an issue with leg length and saddle height. Professional fit is a key, from an experienced shop.
 
Jun 19, 2009
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biomac said:
Ok, here is facts, no fiction:
This is what James Huang wrote about biomac shoes June 10th, 2009:
(...)"With the relatively flexible lower leg system taken out of the equation, power transmission is noticeably more direct and the power stroke is effectively lengthened. As promised, almost all stress on the calves is relieved – virtually eliminating cramps there – and we really did find ourselves motoring along on flats and extended climbs better than usual."
This is what Joe Friel published in his very first blog January 2007 on my patented cycling shoe sole:
(...)"Last July former pro cyclist and shoe designer Goetz Heine (http://www.biomac.biz) suggested I try putting my cleats in the arch of my shoes. With some skepticism I tried it. To my amazement my performance improved. In fact, my power-heart rate ratio which I tracked for years improved by 9%. That's a huge change."
This is what Steve Hogg, famous Sydney-based positionist wrote about the shoes and what he baptised 'midfoot-cleat position':
(...)[I]"What is also obvious using torque analysis is that midfoot cleat positioning flattens the riders torque curve for a given power output. In essence the rider is pushing for longer per stroke rather than harder. This is important because a lower torque peak for the same wattage equals lower peak muscular contraction which in turn equals less fatigue and / or quicker recovery. All of which means greater ability to sustain a given load."[/I]Needless to say than none of the beforementioned experts receive a cheque or find themselves on biomac's payroll.
For obvious reasons I will not comment on this but leave it to your common sense...

I've mentioned this before but anyone that rides endurance on the track figures this out very soon...or gives it up. Toe forward cleats cheat the pedal stroke; which is something a good fit setup should disclose. Fixed gear riding is boring but it definitely reveals limitations of position in the real world. If you can't spin it you won't crush it.
Some shoes won't allow a position far enough aft for certain shoe sizes. Diadoras, for example, used to have a position limited some 2mm ahead of Sidis. Northwaves were the same and had an upturned toe that demanded the cleat be ahead of the arch. Lots of things to think about.
 
Mar 15, 2009
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Oldman said:
I've mentioned this before but anyone that rides endurance on the track figures this out very soon...or gives it up. Toe forward cleats cheat the pedal stroke; which is something a good fit setup should disclose. Fixed gear riding is boring but it definitely reveals limitations of position in the real world. If you can't spin it you won't crush it.
Some shoes won't allow a position far enough aft for certain shoe sizes. Diadoras, for example, used to have a position limited some 2mm ahead of Sidis. Northwaves were the same and had an upturned toe that demanded the cleat be ahead of the arch. Lots of things to think about.

Oldman, may I politely insist that this is not about 'millimeters to the rear', its about half way back, so the cleats get situated under the tarsometatarsal joint (arch region) instead of under the metatarsal joint/ball of the foot.
Riding in this position automatically increases the downstroke zone without lengthening upstroke likewise as longer cranks would do. So less peak power for the same power/speed. That's what James Huang, Steve Hogg and Joe Friel related to in their comments. And this, believe it or not, really does change the gear ratio you can ride in to one tooth bigger without increasing pain.
 
Mar 19, 2009
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biomac said:
Ok, here is facts, no fiction:
This is what James Huang wrote about biomac shoes June 10th, 2009:
(...)"With the relatively flexible lower leg system taken out of the equation, power transmission is noticeably more direct and the power stroke is effectively lengthened. As promised, almost all stress on the calves is relieved – virtually eliminating cramps there – and we really did find ourselves motoring along on flats and extended climbs better than usual."
This is what Joe Friel published in his very first blog January 2007 on my patented cycling shoe sole:
(...)"Last July former pro cyclist and shoe designer Goetz Heine (http://www.biomac.biz) suggested I try putting my cleats in the arch of my shoes. With some skepticism I tried it. To my amazement my performance improved. In fact, my power-heart rate ratio which I tracked for years improved by 9%. That's a huge change."
This is what Steve Hogg, famous Sydney-based positionist wrote about the shoes and what he baptised 'midfoot-cleat position':
(...)"What is also obvious using torque analysis is that midfoot cleat positioning flattens the riders torque curve for a given power output. In essence the rider is pushing for longer per stroke rather than harder. This is important because a lower torque peak for the same wattage equals lower peak muscular contraction which in turn equals less fatigue and / or quicker recovery. All of which means greater ability to sustain a given load."
Needless to say than none of the beforementioned experts receive a cheque or find themselves on biomac's payroll.
For obvious reasons I will not comment on this but leave it to your common sense...
biomac said:
Riding in this position automatically increases the downstroke zone without lengthening upstroke likewise as longer cranks would do. So less peak power for the same power/speed. That's what James Huang, Steve Hogg and Joe Friel related to in their comments. And this, believe it or not, really does change the gear ratio you can ride in to one tooth bigger without increasing pain.

If your shoes actually enhance pedaling efficiency by that much, every shoe company that sponsors pros would be outfitting teams all over the world with that new position in a hurry. Don't you think? What is your patent, the cleat position? Weird, didn't know you could patent something like cleat position, if that's the case. Odd.

Sorry to say, those Biomacs are ugly as ever. That style reminds me of those shoes that overly aggressive bohunk and gypsy males in Eastern Europe wear to the clubs and act extremely rude to women.

Just an opinion.
 
Mar 19, 2009
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Johnny Colnago said:
Ah but you two are forgetting the obvious.
The tester grabbed a few gears higher but his cadence slowed accordingly.
During the test he was riding a 53x11 but only spinning at 20rpm or so! :D

BTW my re-entry into the lower atmosphere after I removed my Bonts was pretty sketchy. Fortunately I was able to use an old Brooks saddle as a heat shield. Now it needs only a mere 50,000km of more riding before it is broken in adequately!

LOL Johnny, please keep it up.
 
Proper fit?

Just curious, what is the proper fit of a cycling shoe? I've heard some say to buy big, which I've tried, and others for them to be snug but not tight, which seems a bit vague to me.

I've tried about everything lately and can't avoid hotspots on the balls of my feet. I've tried Sidis, hotspots. Went to a podiatrist who suggested Shimanos and measured my feet to find the right size, but again, hotspots.:mad:
Tried the speedplay fore-aft extender to use the Hogg method and still not having any luck.

I did have success with Nike's, but they're gone. Anybody had any similar luck with another brand post-Nike?
 
Mar 15, 2009
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El Oso said:
Just curious, what is the proper fit of a cycling shoe? I've heard some say to buy big, which I've tried, and others for them to be snug but not tight, which seems a bit vague to me.

I've tried about everything lately and can't avoid hotspots on the balls of my feet. I've tried Sidis, hotspots. Went to a podiatrist who suggested Shimanos and measured my feet to find the right size, but again, hotspots.:mad:
Tried the speedplay fore-aft extender to use the Hogg method and still not having any luck.

I did have success with Nike's, but they're gone. Anybody had any similar luck with another brand post-Nike?
El Oso, according to my experience hot spots in the first run are the result of (cheap) materials used to build a shoe with.
Take prepreg carbon like it gets processed in the medical or aerospace industry, combine it with a non-toxic glue, a negative heel lift and a shoe which fits like a sock with a stiff sole - voilà, that's what I believe results in absence of foot burn, hot spots or excessive sweating. Agreed that there is different tastes when it comes to looks - first of all, the design of a sports shoe must focus on functionality, on minimum weight and 100% stability where the athlete's action gets transferred to the medium.
Steve Hogg, correct me if I am wrong, takes advantage of bio-mxc² when he rides his bike himself, no adapter plate.
 
Jun 19, 2009
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biomac said:
Oldman, may I politely insist that this is not about 'millimeters to the rear', its about half way back, so the cleats get situated under the tarsometatarsal joint (arch region) instead of under the metatarsal joint/ball of the foot.
Riding in this position automatically increases the downstroke zone without lengthening upstroke likewise as longer cranks would do. So less peak power for the same power/speed. That's what James Huang, Steve Hogg and Joe Friel related to in their comments. And this, believe it or not, really does change the gear ratio you can ride in to one tooth bigger without increasing pain.

Bio. Appreciate your courtesy and we generally agree. I have large feet for a shorter (average GC) size rider. I have my Shimano cleats shoved all the way back and took several years to arrive at your conclusion. Consequently I use shoes that allow that and still have a good fit. I've had other shoes that "fit" very well but the cleat position was too far forward affecting my position and, as you and others note; compromise the available power throughout the pedal stroke. I may be anomalous due to my foot size but my pedal spindle is much closer to my arch than a standard fit would suggest. It does allow me to turn a bigger gear. Again; it's not just the shoes as my entire position is adjusted to accomodate the pedal stroke. You are onto something I've transferred to other teammates but it hasn't worked for everyone. Guys with shorter femur length seem to have problems getting the position and still feel comfortable with bike handling. Perhaps they're too far forward.
 
Proper fit?

Femur length doesn't have a lot to do with proper fit. What matters is arriving at a position that allows the central nervous system to function as efficiently as possible. That takes precedence over so called biomechanical norms because it is fundamental. What that means is that seat setback needs to to be such that the rider can support the majority of their weight on their sitbones without major effort required from the arms and shoulders to support that weight.

My basic premise is this. The muscles that allow us to assume a position relative to gravity are given a higher priority by the brain than the muscles that allow us to develop power / propel the bicycle. That means that the only way we can prioritise power producing muscles is to minimise the enlistment of the postural muscles that allow us to hold a position. In turn, the only way to achieve that is to have the seat the minimum distance behind the bottom bracket that allows the rider to support their weight underneath their backside without heavy involvement of the arms and shoulder complex in supporting that weight.

In essence I'm saying that before we can even talk about biomechanical norms etc, neurological efficiency must be addressed and optimised.

Regards,
Steve Hogg
 
Proper fit?

Further: rather than get a shoe that is "big","small" or whatever; get a shoe that fits well. Too many people who have wide feet go up a size or two in an effort to gain width but badly compromise their cleat positioning potential in the process.

If you use a shoe that is too long, then the cleat holes move forward relative to the heel, but the foot doesn't fill the shoe in terms of length.

Regards,
Steve Hogg
 
Ive been riding midfoot shoes under the advice of Steve Hogg. I cant say Ive had any hotspot issues in the last month Ive had em.

I raced yesterday and won after soloing for 34km to the finish line. Midfoots are the go for sure IMHO. I just hope the UCI doesnt ban em soon! :)
 
Jun 22, 2010
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I believe that your foot swells a bit as you get hot. In the 80s I had a pair of the first Look clip less pedals with the cleat fitted to my Addidas Eddy Mercks shoes, (they had to drill the holes).
The thing was to not lace them to tight. Or not tighter than I would before using the toe clip and strap.
Later I got a pair of time shoes with 3 velcro straps. Same advice, do not over tighten the straps.
Now you go to a shop and get the shoe moulded to your foot cold.
The shoe has to be a bit large so your foot can swell .
 
Jun 18, 2009
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Steve Hogg said:
In turn, the only way to achieve that is to have the seat the minimum distance behind the bottom bracket that allows the rider to support their weight underneath their backside without heavy involvement of the arms and shoulder complex in supporting that weight.

So how do you arrive at this minimum setback and know when you have it right?
 
Jan 13, 2010
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richwagmn said:
So how do you arrive at this minimum setback and know when you have it right?

What Steve Hogg said.

I try to arrive at that with a common sense approach. How do you keep from falling on your face doing anything else that requires balance? You keep your weight centered over your feet. My saddle setback is right where I feel my weight can be supported by my feet and legs, and where I can maintain my neutral ~35-degree back angle using just back and abdominal muscles, without the sensation of being about to fall on my face. Too far back, though, requires too much upper body effort to pull up and forward for out-of-saddle efforts.

Think about all the athletic things we do with a crouched or semi-crouched upper body--ski, skate, whack a tennis ball, set a volleyball. The body is wound up for power, but the center of gravity remains over the feet. Now cycling, speed skating, and downhill skiing are a little different because of the aerodynamic element, but the body must still be balanced over the feet.

How did we get here from "shoe choices?"
 
Jul 17, 2009
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LAREDOUTE said:
I need some help and advice from the wise folk out there.I have been back on the bike for one year after a 25 year break (what was I thinking!)I started out with my old shoes,clips and straps.....attached to the old bike.I have updated bike-wise in a budget s/hand durace foco steel-frame kinda way.Being new to strapless pedals I bought a pair of Lake tri shoes and it is time to update. By the way I am talking about racing .Recently U.K.mag Cycling Plus tested Bont shoes (very pricey heat moulded)and claimed <after fitting the shoes properly,we found using a few gears higher than normal wasnt uncommon on our test rides> Shimano do a heat moulded shoe also I think.QUESTION IS do these shoes really make that much difference.I dont want to loose any of my hard won wattage!Any thoughts or comments appreciated.


I like Shimano shoes. they fit my foot and I ride in them exclusively for that reason. and they are stiff as all heck

The heat molded thing is a bit of a gimmick however. The footbed shrinks with heat and the heel cup loses its feel and is nothing more than a well padded heel.

That doesn't keep me off them. I never used the foot bet. it is worthless

the comfort level is there regardless of the molding and the stiff carbon sole is worth it IMHO. makes a difference

There are many carbon sole brands to choose from. Carbon is worth it but find what fits best under foot
 
Jul 22, 2012
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Steve or anyone!
I am looking for the cycling shoes with the flattest sole, that is with the least amount of heel lift. I have an issue that a lower heel lift helps a lot, but would like an even lower heel lift shoe. I have found Diadoras to be the lowest so far, much better than Sidi genius 5's, for example. Any ideas out there?
 
LAREDOUTE said:
I need some help and advice from the wise folk out there.I have been back on the bike for one year after a 25 year break (what was I thinking!)I started out with my old shoes,clips and straps.....attached to the old bike.I have updated bike-wise in a budget s/hand durace foco steel-frame kinda way.Being new to strapless pedals I bought a pair of Lake tri shoes and it is time to update. By the way I am talking about racing .Recently U.K.mag Cycling Plus tested Bont shoes (very pricey heat moulded)and claimed <after fitting the shoes properly,we found using a few gears higher than normal wasnt uncommon on our test rides> Shimano do a heat moulded shoe also I think.QUESTION IS do these shoes really make that much difference.I dont want to loose any of my hard won wattage!Any thoughts or comments appreciated.

""after fitting the shoes properly,we found using a few gears higher than normal wasnt uncommon on our test rides""

What utter balderdash..look at the Mag to see how many Trek ads there are.

Shoes should fit, like all shoes. No difference. Go to a decent bike shop and try some on....lash the cleats on, go ride. You 'may' want to spend big $$ on shoes but don't expect the flowers to smell any better. If theu fit better, then do it, but not for the above BS.
 
Jul 22, 2012
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shoes...

Yes, getting a 'few' gears higher from a pair of shoes sounds a bit off...But I am just trying to find shoes that have less 'heel lift', or a flatter sole. Steve Hogg made a mention of this, and so I am hoping he will reply with information on a shoe that has no heel lift, or at least the least! I have found by actual trials that more heel lift is a detriment for me. I think my left leg/foot has some issue that results in my left foot heel being a lot lower resulting in a lot of stretching or stress on the nerves and so my left leg goes numb at high efforts. I can feel a big difference between some shoes, the sidi's being worse as they have a lot higher heel lift. So I was hoping Steve would reply with information on what shoe brand might be flatter.
 
Mar 13, 2009
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Love my Bont Vapours, being heat moldable they do fit very well, which I am sure is some benefit. But the benefit is all about fit and if something else works there is no issue.

As for the gear, well I personally found myself more likely to have numb feet from high pressure points before (with TIME CXPro I think made by DMT) so the natural way around this is to spin cadence with lower pressure = same power. With a better fit I can put more "Force" in to the stroke with out that issue, so I think this comment was taken out of context.
I also have Sidi's on my other bike (Keo pedal vs speedplay) which are a lot softer than the TIME and "feels" like I lose power, although more comfortable. The Bont feels both stiff and comfortable, for Hoehler the heel is pretty flat compared to the TIME, similar to the Sidi, but the best way would be to try