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MAGELLAN1's Photo MAGELLAN1 Posts: 550
7/17/09 7:20 A

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i rode with platforms on my mtb for years before going clippless for offroad riding 2.5 years ago(i have been mtbing 10years, so it was a long time) i have a nice bike and i travelled a lot with a group riding. i still will unclip on somethings that are tricky like switchbacks that i am uncertain of, or if i am on a trail that runs along the edge of a cliff and there are slick roots. i am still actually not 100% comfortable on the mtb/trails clipped in.

i was clipped in on my road bike way before clipping in on my mtb bike, but had used cages prior to that. the pedals are easier and also i have less explaining to do as noone really uses them any more. it was peer pressure.

i still have my pedals set up loose and have never pulled out of them when i didnt want to pull out. it has become more natural, and i dont really have to think about it that much anymore.




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VONTAN's Photo VONTAN Posts: 283
7/16/09 3:57 P

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I can definitely identify with Newspirit I put clipless on my mtn bike a few months ago. I figured I would fall a bit, but I had no idea how much. Considering I always rode on the road it got to where I would always take off on the grass, and for a time I wore elbow and knee pads, I had to look pretty stupid for sure. It got to where I was paranoid about it and for a time it took the joy out of riding my bike. I had them on the loosest tension but nothing seemed to help. When I would go to unclip I would get half way out and it would feel like I was stuck to the pedal. So I would unclip both sides way before I had to come to a stop. I kept to roads where I knew there was little traffic and cross streets but I still was fearful of having to stop suddenly and not getting out in time. So then I bought a road bike a few wks ago and figured I had to get this down, and put the pedals on and just kept practicing. I got some dry teflon lube that I put on the pedals and that has made a big difference. I still unclip both sides as a precaution well before I need to stop, just don't have enough confidence to do only my right but that will come in time.

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DRC2205's Photo DRC2205 Posts: 8,845
7/16/09 11:41 A

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(Still laughing at the image in my head of MAGELLAN and her BF on the tandem bike, unclipping on opposite sides)

Once I learned how to unclip, my only real clip related falls were when a cleat on the bottom of my shoe was slightly loose--when I would roate my heel, the cleat would stay locked in and rotate on my shoe. If I tried to recreate it, I could barely move it by hand. I figured it out by looking at the placement on the bottom of my shoe.

Edited by: DRC2205 at: 7/16/2009 (11:41)
SHIVASHIVA's Photo SHIVASHIVA Posts: 154
7/16/09 10:43 A

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I've been riding for a couple years and was unclipping fine and just went through a spell of a couple weeks where I fell multiple times.

It helps me to be extremely conscious when unclipping. I can't "just do it" or use my instincts. I have to get all mentally prepared. I always unclip my left, slow down slowly, lean forward off the seat, and then as the bike is coming ot a complete stop put my left foot down. If anything happens to spook me, or if I'm on an upward incline (and thus deccelerating more quickly than usual), I'm libel to fall.

And because of this I ALWAYS walk my bike across the street. My husband makes fun of me for it, but my main problem is that I get nervous and spooked easily, especially if the situation seems dangerous, so I just feel way safer on my own two feet when I'm out there with the cars.

This thread has helped me too!

The only lasting beauty is the beauty of the heart. www.mountainmeadowmassageschool.com
NEWSPIRIT1's Photo NEWSPIRIT1 Posts: 26
7/15/09 8:48 P

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Thank you all for the feedback. It is extremely helpful! I will get back on the horse!!

"If you want something different, you must do something different. The same actions yield the same results"


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MAGELLAN1's Photo MAGELLAN1 Posts: 550
7/15/09 5:33 P

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a little off topic but...i had a boyfriend that unclipped right and put his right foot down, i unclip left and put left foot down.

we trailed a tandem from a bike shop for a couple of weeks, it was interesting...



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MRSSUZSTAR's Photo MRSSUZSTAR SparkPoints: (52,527)
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7/15/09 4:27 P

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Okay...how timely could this discussion be? *smirks as she looks down at her multiple abrasions from rides of late* While clipping out on regular 'riding' times is easy for me now, it seems that there are still moments where I cannot unclip! That being said when looking at what side I unclip the most it is my right though I am ambidextrous as to handedness. I always start off right foot on the bike because that is what I learned back as a kid. I cannot seem to get out of that habit no matter what I try but I also always put my right foot down because my legs are slightly different in length and my right one is the slightly longer one. (I have scoliosis that causes my hips to be slightly off...nothing that is major healthwise mind you...just that i gives that leg length offset.) I need to, however, learn to unclip with either foot so I can avoid the falls I've taken when being clipped out right and leaning left. Practice, I know, practice!

Good luck on the bike and GET BACK ON! :)

Suzan

Recommitted and re-energized to get back in shape!

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I care for rare - Sophia is rare!


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HEYPUTTHATDOWN's Photo HEYPUTTHATDOWN Posts: 261
7/15/09 4:09 P

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hmmm ... I'm R/H but unclip my left foot and lean left on stops ... maybe to take off with the presumably stronger right leg?

Regarding those who unclip equally well from either side, I remember the wisdom of Charles Shackleford, an NC State basketball player, being interviewed in 1988: "I can dribble with my right hand and I can dribble with my left hand. I'm amphibious."


I'd rather be sitting on my bike thinking about God than sitting in church thinking about my bike ...
DRC2205's Photo DRC2205 Posts: 8,845
7/15/09 3:08 P

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I am left-handed too, and always clip out to the left. I can do it to the right, but it just feels weird. Maybe I need to move to the UK...

WONGERCHI's Photo WONGERCHI Posts: 3,889
7/15/09 11:42 A

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GIANT-STEPS:
Interesting point - I unclip my right so that I can stick a foot on the sidewalk. When I rode with straps as a teenager in the UK I'd pull my left foot out for exactly the same reason.

I CX dismount/remount whenever I can - keeps me sharp for when CX season hits. I definitely do this in transition to and from the bike leg in a multisport event - it saves a boat-load of time (and looks cool!). I have had some near misses with other triathletes standing right in my way at the bike mount line fumbling with their clips though.

On the roadbike it's trickier as my LOOKs are one sided - before every race I do a transition practise where I get this as smooth as possible. On the CX bike, clipping in and out at speed is something I don't think about anymore. It also helps that my SPDs are double sided so it's run, jump/slide, stamp foot onto pedal, go...

In God we trust, all others bring data.
- W. Edwards Demings

If God invented marathons to keep people from doing anything more stupid, the triathlon must have taken Him completely by surprise.
-P.Z. Pearce

Specificity, specificity, specificity.
-Andy Coggan

The plural of "anecdote" is not "data".
- Frank Kotsonis


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SCOTTCR1's Photo SCOTTCR1 Posts: 103
7/15/09 11:30 A

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You still should be fully able to unclip from either side in a nano-second... but when road riding and I come to a light and get bored of track standing for a minute or so, I usually unclip the right foot as this means the bike and my body will angle away from the cars and the center of the road.

Not to fear though, you'd actually be surprised how many people have trouble clipping in and unclipping quickly. I came from a mountain bike racing background so that really helps.

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GIANT-STEPS SparkPoints: (65,379)
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7/15/09 11:20 A

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Most cyclists I know almost always unclip the same pedal. With rare exceptions I unclip my right pedal.

Something interesting I noticed while riding. When I go on a group ride most riders now seem to unclip their left pedal. I did most of my bike miles in the pre-clipless era of toe clips and straps. Back then everyone put their right foot down. The old farts like myself who started out with clips and straps now unclip their right pedal like I do but the pups who started cycling after clipless pedals came out usually unclip their left foot.

Anyone else notice this?

Speaking of clipping and unclipping; I noticed while watching the Tour that after crashes a lot of riders do cyclocross style remounts. While I've ridden some trails on a cyclocross bike I've never competed or learned to mount 'cross style. It certainly looks cool when the racers jump on the saddle then clip both feet in and it saves precious seconds.

SCOTTCR1's Photo SCOTTCR1 Posts: 103
7/15/09 11:15 A

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You should definitely work on unclipping on the right side. Being ambidextrous is critical. Once you get a little better (able to unclip on either side when you are prepared) then try to ride slowly, come to a complete stop, and then unclip on the side that you will "fall" to. Once you've mastered that, you can practice your track stand technique so you never have to unclip except for when you arrive back home :)

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MTNBIKENV's Photo MTNBIKENV SparkPoints: (15,447)
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7/15/09 11:06 A

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The grass thing is wonderful. I made the mistake of trying it out on gravel when I got my mtn bike. I was a bloody mess. Literally.

I only unclip to the left. I'm left handed, wonder if that has to do with it?

Someone mentioned campus pedals, two sided.... clips one side, flat on the other, I have that on my touring/commuting bike. LOVE those things. But way heavy, not exactly a good road bike pedal. Just keep practicing, you'll get the hang of it!



Marnie
RENO, NEVADA

A ship is safe in harbor, but that's not what ships are for.

SCOTTCR1's Photo SCOTTCR1 Posts: 103
7/15/09 10:29 A

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+1 on riding around slowly on the grass. When it's slow, you won't know which side to unclip from until the last second. After an hour or so, you will have nailed it and will never have a problem again.

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WONGERCHI's Photo WONGERCHI Posts: 3,889
7/15/09 10:26 A

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NEWSPIRIT:
+1 on what HEY said. Get back on the horse and get going again.

I would suggest taking some time to practise clipping/unclipping. On a quiet street somewhere (or on the grass), cruise around at a low speed, then unclip BOTH your feet and stop. Repeat until it's comfortable.

The next step is to unclip ONE foot - whichever one is more comfortable. The same drill applies - cruise around somewhere slowly, unclip that foot, and then lean over to that side when you stop. Start again and repeat until it's comfortable. I only ever unclip my right foot.

You also may want to work on your balance. Next time you're out for a short ride, see how long you can ride on the white line that marks the shoulder. Then on subsequent rides, see if you can do if for longer. I have several other drills but that's a decent one to start.

Edited by: WONGERCHI at: 7/15/2009 (10:32)
In God we trust, all others bring data.
- W. Edwards Demings

If God invented marathons to keep people from doing anything more stupid, the triathlon must have taken Him completely by surprise.
-P.Z. Pearce

Specificity, specificity, specificity.
-Andy Coggan

The plural of "anecdote" is not "data".
- Frank Kotsonis


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HEYPUTTHATDOWN's Photo HEYPUTTHATDOWN Posts: 261
7/15/09 8:55 A

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NS,

This strikes me as one of those "get back on the horse" moments.

You (or your LBS) should adjust your pedals for the least amount of tension so that your foot is barely, if at all, "clipped in".

Ride this way until you regain your confidence.

You should know how to adjust the tension (this is very easy). As you gain confidence, simply increase the tension only to the point that you need to keep your foot from detaching from the pedal on the upstroke.

BTW, it is OK to unclip both feet when coming to a stopping point. Coast with the arch or outside of your foot on the pedal and you will be able to "fall" to either side.

Good luck,

Bob

ps ... you could also try "campus pedals" ... SPD on one side and platform on the other.

Edited by: HEYPUTTHATDOWN at: 7/15/2009 (09:02)
I'd rather be sitting on my bike thinking about God than sitting in church thinking about my bike ...
NEWSPIRIT1's Photo NEWSPIRIT1 Posts: 26
7/15/09 8:03 A

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Hello All!

As I have mentioned before, I am new to cycling. I began in April, riding with a local bike club. I was told that, eventually I should be able to ride clipped into my pedals. Three weeks ago I purchased my shoes and began praticing. My first ride on a trail(25 miles), no incidents. I did very well in fact. My second ride(43 miles) highways and residential streets, I did terribly. I fell several times in very dangerous locations. What seems to happen is, I unclip my right foot and if there is the slightest uneveness to the ground I begin to lean left. My third ride on the trail I did so well on previously, I fell several times. I am now very fearful to riding clipped in.

I am not interested in speed at this time. Therefore, based on my interests for fitness purposes only, is riding with clips something I need to do? emoticon

"If you want something different, you must do something different. The same actions yield the same results"


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