Although you can ride a bike in any shoe, those who ride regularly can benefit tremendously from shoes built specifically for this sport. Unlike usual athletic shoes, bicycle shoes have stiffer holes, allowing better energy transfer while pedalling. Ideally, cyclists should look for cycling shoes that are light and comfortable and can handle the most challenging terrain. The shoes should have clipless soles to empower traction and braking with a good grip on wet and dry surfaces. To find the right pair for yourself, you should know about the different types of bike shoes and their features.
Different Types of Bike Shoes
Knowing about different kinds of bike shoes will enable you to understand which one you should prefer.
- Road bike shoes are suitable for those who want greater pedalling efficiency. These shoes have the stiffest soles. They also utilise three-hole protruding cleats that link shoes to clipless pedals. These shoes don’t have much tread and aren’t developed for prolonged walking.
- Mountain bike shoes have grippy soles, which provide greater traction on rough terrains. Mountain bike shoes come in two types. The first one is those that have two-hole cleats recessed into the sole. These kinds of shoes clip into clipless pedals and make walking easier. The other type is the shoe that has flat pedals. These don’t have cleats but have a sticky rubber sole.
- Casual bike shoes look like sneakers and are ideal for recreational riders. They are also suitable for those who desire their shoes to have some functionality of bike shoes, like a stiff sole. Casual bike shoes work with clipless pedals and consist of cleats recessed into the sole. They also make walking easier.
Determine How the Shoes Fit
It’s important to pick those shoes that fit adequately from the start. You might initially feel some slippage in the heel when trying these shoes. It is due to the stiffness of the soles that support the foot in a stable position while pedalling. Good cycling shoes have a dual closure system that controls the pressure distribution on the foot’s upper arch to prevent unnecessary pinch points while cycling. The rear part is designed to adjust to your heel, which prevents slippage and allows for a precision fit. They have a tongue made with a thin padding layer, which imparts optimal comfort when you cycle for extended miles.
Know the Type of Shoe Closure You Want
There are various types of shoe closures. You should choose one depending on your preference and needs.
- Laces – Laces provide the most customisable fit. But they can get dirty and wet in certain weather conditions. If you choose a shoe with laces, pick one whose ends are not too long and can be easily tucked away to avoid them from getting in between a chain.
- Hook-and-loop straps – These provide quick closure and are usable in wet and muddy conditions. Hook-and-loop straps stay on much more securely than laces. The greater the number of straps, the more you will be able to adjust the shoe’s fit.
- Notched cam straps with buckles – They provide good security and clamping power. But this type of closure is a bit more expensive.
- Ratcheting or dials cable lace – Shoes with this closure system have a dial system. It tightens a cable laces system. The wearer can turn a knob to adjust the shoe’s fit.
Now that you know all about bike shoes, you will find it easier to explore the different options. Ensure that the shoe you purchase fits your entire feet correctly and provides maximum support.