Choosing the Right Cycling

Athletic shoes used to be a specialty niche – one which did not provide much in the way of options until very recently. However, now you can find hundreds of different brands and styles of shoes for essentially every sport. Cycling, with its recent and meteoric rise in popularity, has enjoyed a similar growth and thus choosing cycling shoes can be both fun and somewhat complex.

For the Casual Cyclist

For those that do not spend that much time cycling – maybe a few hours a week as basic recreation or transportation – specialty shoes are probably unnecessary. Good tennis shoes or running shoes will often do the trick. For these individuals, any shoe with a solid grip will be effective. The only advice you should heed is to stay away from casual walking shoes or old tennis shoes with worn down soles or holes. Also, try not to wear shoes with long, loose laces that cannot be restrained.

For the Active Cyclist

For someone that is more active in the sport, the options are more plentiful and a good, dedicated cycling shoe is recommended. As mentioned above, a shoe that provides a good grip is vital. Not only can a loose sole result in slippage and injury; a good, stiff sole will allow you to transfer more energy from your motion to the pedals and thus you will perform better.

The choices for avid cyclists are many and will often depend on your style of bike, personal preferences, and past experience. The first and most common type of cycling shoe has a clip attached to the toe to keep your foot firmly planted on the pedal at all times. This will ensure that you do not lose your grip and cause an accident. These shoes provide optimum energy transfer and are best for road cyclists.

For a mountain biker, this type of shoe would be incredibly dangerous. Therefore, different shoes are required for offroad cycling. It is vital to be able to get on and off of a bike almost instantly when riding in rough terrain or on big hills, especially with the heightened risk of falling that accompanies these routes. In addition, mountain biking shoes need to be able to double as a sturdy hiking shoe or boot because you may be forced to hike a ways or carry your bicycle over especially harsh terrain while on a ride.

The closures on professional cycling shoes will vary as well, offering different choices for different riding styles. Laces are always a popular choice, while Velcro is the usual selection for professionals whose feet are planted to the pedal. You want to choose a shoe that will be comfortable and allow you to feel safe while pedaling. If Velcro provides that feeling of safety, consider buying a Velcro shoe.

When exercising, you must consider and purchase the right kind of equipment, especially as you begin to cycle more often and more intensely. Without the right shoes, you risk not only injuring your leg or foot, but causing unnecessary pain in your lower body and losing a good percentage of the energy being transferred from your legs to the pedals. For efficiency, safety, and general enjoyment, consider a pair of dedicated cycling shoes.

Leave a Reply