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Berkeley Mike said:
There has been an extensive discussion about this issue in the Passion forum very recently.
...
However I have imported a graph that I thought was really interesting describing the muscle groups that provide power in certain parts of the pedal stroke. I have no idea how accurate it is and it certainly is not gospel. However, it fits the way I think about peddling.
This is the thread that Berkeley Mike was referring to. It's worth a quick read through:

http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=679874

One thing to consider with flat pedals when compared to clipless pedals is that your foot isn't restricted to one position. With clipless pedals a typical MTB shoe and clipless pedal design means that you pedal using the ball of your foot.

Using a flat pedal your foot can choose its own natural position on the pedal. You'll often end up pedalling using the midfoot instead of the ball of the foot. There's been quite a bit of discussion over the last few years as to whether pedalling using the midfoot can be better than pedalling using the ball of the foot, both in terms of improved torque but also for reducing injuries.

(see posts by "Biomac" and "Steve Hogg" in particular)
http://www.bicycles.net.au/forums/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=11544

http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/category/clothing/shoes/product/bio-mxc2-shoes-09-34720

http://www.bicyclepaper.com/articles/2010/08/midfoot_cleat_position

http://www.trainingbible.com/joesblog/2007/02/biomac-shoes.html

"Though unusual, the idea behind Heine's mid-foot or 'arch' cleat position is logical. He and other mid-foot proponents such as renowned coach Joe Friel and Cyclingnews fitness panelist Steve Hogg surmise that the majority of a rider's power is produced by the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings while the lower leg only serves to stabilise the efforts of what happens above. As such, the lower leg is merely a conduit and doesn't produce enough effective power to justify the metabolic cost.

Moving the cleats back to the arch - a location Heine defines as optimal - thus substantially reduces the workload on the calves and leaves more oxygen and energy remaining for those larger muscle groups to produce more total power before fatigue and exhaustion can set in. In other words, you can go faster for longer with no additional training required aside from adjusting to the new position.

"Compare it to doing push-ups," says Heine. "One time on your fingertips, second time on the palms of your hands. Total [lactic acid production and oxygen consumption] will be equal but the fingertip exercise will exhaust you sooner."

Interesting enough, but does it work? The mid-foot cleat position feels weird at first but it only took a couple of rides to adapt and dare we admit it, we actually like it - at least most of the time. Most mountain bike riders on platform pedals naturally adopt this position already.

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.
Bikeradar.com

It's something to think about.:)

Pictured below: Biomac midfoot cleat position is very close to the midfoot position your foot can end up in naturally when pedalling on flat pedals.
 

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electrik said:
Haha, so we're all Brian Lopes now? Come on... while we're at it - Lets look at somebody like Sam Hill as proof that clipless shoes aren't a technique enabling technology. Props to Sam Hill for showing people there is more than one way to skin a cat.

I'm cool with you insulting my "skillz" if you want to have a temper-tantrum telling people they suck, that is hilarious. I'm sure you'll prove something about somebody that way. ;)

Anyways, I am still waiting for all that stunning evidence clipless pedals are obviously superior to platforms. Maybe then i'll switch to clipless 24/7...
You stated you "would brake all the time for no reason" and"be afraid to put your foot out in corners' clipped in, which is clearly not true, and the only anyone would think that is if they didn't have very good bike skills. period.

The Lopes comment was just an example of a very high level gravity racer who is clipped in, and I believe Steve Peat clips in too. The ONLY pro racers who use flats are DH racers, and its not even the majority of them. XC is pretty much all clipped in due to the climbing advantage it offers, as stated.
 

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waterdude said:
I'm a noob and it was a serious question. I assume you shave your legs because of drag, but that's just an educated guess. This is the second thread I've read regarding racing on platforms vs. clipless in just a few weeks, and although both times I've come away believing that you know your shite, I've also come away with the feeling that you're a complete ******. Even if you are right (and I believe you are), trying to shout it the loudest, or "get the final word in" just makes you seem like a jag off. I'll google xc racing and shaven legs. Thanks-
Apologies if I came off as a ****. This was one instance in which it wasn't intentional.

My answer was at least partially honest. No matter what anyone says, the primary reason guys who ride or race shave their legs is because they like the way it looks and feels. My wife likes it, too.

The secondary reason is everyone else does it. It's almost like a visible mark of how "serious" one is about cycling.

The "scientific" reasons are all tertiary at best. Massage, road rash, etc. Aerodynamic benefits are basically negligible.

I'm OK with that, and have gotten so used to doing it that I don't like having hairy legs even in the off-season. A few guys I race with don't shave, and it's no big deal either way.

My primary beef with the way the clipless thing comes up every few weeks or so is that it's a question that was answered 2 decades ago as 99.9% of racers migrated to clipless within 2 years of introduction. It's a non-issue, and while flats work too, they aren't as good for even general XC riding, and certainly inferior for racing.
 

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There are a few studies comparing clipless pedals to toe clips and flat pedals linked in this long thread:

http://www.bentrideronline.com/messageboard/showthread.php?t=52152

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The effect of clip-less pedals on mechanical characteristics measured during sprinting on a non-isokinetic cycle ergometer

"Summary

Purpose.
The purpose of this study was to compare the mechanical parameters measured on a non-isokinetic cycle ergometer equiped with or without toe-clip pedals during sprinting.

Methods.
Two groups of subjects (international-national and regional cyclists) performed four sprints of 8 seconds with two different friction forces applied to the belt (0.5 or 1.1 N.kg−1). A variance analysis with repeated measures (shoe-pedal linkages and groups) has been performed.

Results.
The results show a significant increase of the maximal values of force, velocity and power output when clip-less pedals were used, whatever the friction force applied.

Conclusions.
This improvement of maximal power could be attributed to a significant increase in optimal velocity, which was observed for both considerable and minimal friction force. In fact, clipless pedals allowed a greater muscular activity, a greater efficiency index, and better muscular coordination."
F. Hintzy, A. Belli, F. Grappe and J.D. Rouillon

Edit: Working Link
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0765-1597(99)80055-0
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Electromyography in cycling: difference between clipless pedal and toe clip pedal
"The purpose of this study was to verify if there is electromyographic difference in biceps femoris (long portion), semitendinous, semimembranous and gastrocnemius (lateralis and medialis) muscles, using clipless pedal and toe clip pedal.

Thirty seven triathletes answered a questionnaire about their preferred type of pedal, which showed that 5.4% used toe clip pedal and 94.6% used clipless pedal. Four male triathletes (age: 21.75 +/- 2.50 years old; cycling experience: 5.00 +/- 2.45 years; preferred cadence: 83.75 +/- 7.5 rpm) rode their own bicycles on a stationary roller at 100 rpm. The subjects performed one trial with each type of pedal. Bipolar surface electrodes placed on right lower limb picked up the EMG signal during 6 s. A band-pass filter (10-600 Hz) was used.

Two muscles (semitendinous and semimembranous) presented lower activity with clipless pedal for all subjects. Biceps femoris and gastrocnemius lateralis presented lower activity with clipless pedal for three subjects. This led us to conclude that there is less electromyographic activity with the use of clipless pedal." Cruz CF, Bankoff AD 2001

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11441642

Review 2009
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18093842

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Effects of pedal type and pull-up action during cycling.
"The aim of this study was to determine the influence of different shoe-pedal interfaces and of an active pulling-up action during the upstroke phase on the pedalling technique.

Eight elite cyclists (C) and seven non-cyclists (NC) performed three different bouts at 90 rev . min (-1) and 60 % of their maximal aerobic power. They pedalled with single pedals (PED), with clipless pedals (CLIP) and with a pedal force feedback (CLIPFBACK) where subjects were asked to pull up on the pedal during the upstroke.

There was no significant difference for pedalling effectiveness, net mechanical efficiency (NE) and muscular activity between PED and CLIP. When compared to CLIP, CLIPFBACK resulted in a significant increase in pedalling effectiveness during upstroke (86 % for C and 57 % NC, respectively), as well as higher biceps femoris and tibialis anterior muscle activity (p < 0.001). However, NE was significantly reduced (p < 0.008) with 9 % and 3.3 % reduction for C and NC, respectively.

Consequently, shoe-pedal interface (PED vs. CLIP) did not significantly influence cycling technique during submaximal exercise. However, an active pulling-up action on the pedal during upstroke increased the pedalling effectiveness, while reducing net mechanical efficiency."
Mornieux G, Stapelfeldt B, Gollhofer A, Belli A.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18418807

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Gross cycling efficiency is not altered with and without toe-clips
"The aim of this study was to examine the claim that reductions of 8 - 18% in submaximal oxygen consumption (O2) could be due to changing components on a Monark ergometer, from standard pedals without toe-clips or straps (flat pedals) to racing pedals of that era, which included toe-clips and straps (toe-clip pedals).

This previously untested assertion was evaluated using 11 males (mean age 22.3 years, s = 1.2; height 1.82 m, s = 0.07; body mass 82.6 kg, s = 8.8) who completed four trials in a randomized, counterbalanced order at 60 rev · min-1 on a Monark cycle ergometer. Two trials were completed on flat pedals and two trials on toe-clip pedals. The Douglas bag method was used to assess O2 and gross efficiency during successive 5-min workloads of 60, 120, 180, and 240 W.

The mean O2 was 2.1% higher for toe-clip pedals than flat pedals and there was a 99% probability that toe-clip pedals would not result in an 8% lower O2. These results indicate that toe-clip pedals do not reduce O2."
Authors: Laura M. Ostlera; James A. Bettsa; Christopher J. Gore

http://www.informaworld.com/smpp/content~content=a781709524~db=all~jumptype=rss

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tommyrod74 said:
Apologies if I came off as a ****. This was one instance in which it wasn't intentional.

My answer was at least partially honest. No matter what anyone says, the primary reason guys who ride or race shave their legs is because they like the way it looks and feels. My wife likes it, too.

The secondary reason is everyone else does it. It's almost like a visible mark of how "serious" one is about cycling.

The "scientific" reasons are all tertiary at best. Massage, road rash, etc. Aerodynamic benefits are basically negligible.

I'm OK with that, and have gotten so used to doing it that I don't like having hairy legs even in the off-season. A few guys I race with don't shave, and it's no big deal either way.

My primary beef with the way the clipless thing comes up every few weeks or so is that it's a question that was answered 2 decades ago as 99.9% of racers migrated to clipless within 2 years of introduction. It's a non-issue, and while flats work too, they aren't as good for even general XC riding, and certainly inferior for racing.
Thanks for the second look.:cool: Actually, I kinda dig these threads. I have zero interest in racing (right now), and I'm on the fence about clipless. I have the clipless pedals that came stock on my new bike, and I have a decent pair of platforms. In other words, I could do it if I had the nerve. Eventually these threads will push me over the edge. ;)
 

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waterdude said:
I'm on the fence about clipless. I have the clipless pedals that came stock on my new bike, and I have a decent pair of platforms. In other words, I could do it if I had the nerve. Eventually these threads will push me over the edge. ;)
The main things to consider if you're thinking about using clipless pedals are that they aren't all the same. A clipless pedal such as Shimano SPD with adjustable spring release tension is a good beginner pedal because you can set the spring release tension to a low level - making it easy to get your foot out in a hurry with little effort. When you read about people getting new pedals and falling off 10 times on the first ride it's usually because the release tension was too high on their pedals.

Practice is important with clipless pedals also. The best technique for releasing a clipless pedal is to first have your leg straight and at the bottom of the pedal stroke before trying to unclip. This gives you maximum leverage and muscle strength for unclipping your foot from the pedal. When you unclip a clear sideways twisting action of the leg (inwards or outwards) will cleanly disengage the cleat.

If you try and unclip when your pedal is at the top of the pedal stroke it's much harder to do because you can't utilise your leg muscles as well.

When riding with clipless pedals (on or offroad) you need to be thinking ahead about whether a situation could require you to quickly unclip. If you're prepared then you can avoid many of those situations where you suddenly realise you have to get a foot down but don't have time to react. Most clipless pedal related falls are avoidable.:)

Having cycling shoes with a grippy midsole that are easy to ride on when clipped out are useful too. Sticking a strip of old tyre on the sole of the shoe can make it much easier and safer to ride clipped out on top of SPD pedals. If you're really concerned about a section then don't be ashamed to ride with a foot unclipped on top of the pedal in readiness for a dab.

Pictured below: A strip of old tyre on cycling shoes makes it easier to ride clipped out when using SPD pedals.
 

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tommyrod74 said:
Do you have any clue as to how much some of us train to improve another 5%?

5% is the difference between first place and midpack at the higher levels. Hell, on the road (which is another subject) it's often the difference between first and last.

You really think that the ability to drag a foot through turns makes up for that? In an XC race?
Take a chill pill tommy, you're jumping up and down on me like some excited cocker-spaniel..

What I am telling you is that XC racing is much different that road racing. The only place i think the added efficiency of clips would be clear is track racing. If you think 5% - note that was a maximum and only an efficiency number(not a finishing time) - is what is holding you back then congrats you really are an elite pro. Which team do you ride for?

Further the improvement in efficiency is a result of having a better cadence, if you're spinning 120rpm enough on an xc race to make that clips worth your time congrats, you chose too low a gear for your singlespeed!

Yes, i think anything that allows you to not hit the brakes will make you much faster... I have seen a lot of clipless guys eat **** on corners or slow waaay down. Personally i think they would be better off if somebody, like you, wasn't trying to ram clipless pedals down their throats and ruin their confidence.
 

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tommyrod74 said:
Again, are we discussing new riders who don't have basic handling skills, or are you still trying to generalize this to say that ALL XC racers might be faster on flats? I'd agree that riding flats at first might build some useful skills if those weren't developed during youth (my entire generation, it seems, grew up on BMX bikes), but that would only delay the inevitable progression to clipless for racing or general XC riding.

I'd be willing to bet you'd see even better race results with clipless pedals - if you could get over the pathological fear of them (or maybe just the yearning to be the iconoclast).
If you read my other post throughly you'd see i do use clipless frequently - the actual improvements in efficiency I experience are not earth shattering. I do like riding clips on the road... I'm not making any generalizations, just trying to stick to the facts i know.
 

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"Take a chill pill tommy, you're jumping up and down on me like some excited cocker-spaniel.

What I am telling you is that XC racing is much different that road racing."

I road race as well, often in pro/1/2/3/fields and against former national champions in masters 35+. And I'm here to tell you that if I didn't have to occasionally clip out to run a section of an xc race (usually because of a rider in front not being able to ride a climb), I would actually run road shoes and pedals off-road to save weight, and have done so on some non-techy courses.

"The only place i think the added efficiency of clips would be clear is track racing. If you think 5% - note that was a maximum and only an efficiency number(not a finishing time) - is what is holding you back then congrats you really are an elite pro. Which team do you ride for? "

I race for the Gary Fisher (now Trek) 29er Crew. Cat 1, usually podium, 4 wins this past season, targeting a pro license withing the next 2 seasons. And yes, 5 % improvement in FTP would be a big difference in my power profile. Anyone who trains with a power metric would agree, especially after they have been training for a few years and big improvements are hard to come by. In my case, that would be 15-20 watts improvement, enough to make a noticeable difference.

Of course, I'm fully aware that 5% was simply a number the author pulled out of his ass, with only his "observations" to attribute it to.

"Further the improvement in efficiency is a result of having a better cadence, if you're spinning 120rpm enough on an xc race to make that clips worth your time congrats, you chose too low a gear for your singlespeed!"

Nope, 1 X 10, and my average off-road cadence is ~ 85-90. I just like to be able to pull up on the pedals while climbing out of the saddle. Pretty sure that this is an advantage. Also pretty sure that every study I've seen on cadence shows that the most efficient cadence varies from individual to individual. You wouldn't just make stuff up, now, would you?

"Yes, i think anything that allows you to not hit the brakes will make you much faster... I have seen a lot of clipless guys eat **** on corners or slow waaay down. Personally i think they would be better off if somebody, like you, wasn't trying to ram clipless pedals down their throats and ruin their confidence."

I would ask you again... who are you riding with? In my Cat 1 races, I have NEVER seen anyone take a corner slowly or crash due to clipless pedals. Never heard anyone remark after a race that they had wished they weren't clipped in.

If the vast majority of BMX racers (some as young as 5!) are on clipless pedals... you are a lone voice in the wilderness, and no one is listening. Except me, obviously, and only because you are annoying me.

I'll say it again - the only reason clipless could be a detriment for XC racing would be if the rider in question LACKS THE BASIC SKILLS TO BE RACING A BICYCLE IN THE WOODS IN THE FIRST PLACE. Was that clear enough?
 

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fazzster said:
I have been riding since 1986 and I just recently switched to platforms (and a rigid fork). I am a weekend warrior and do 2 to 3 races a year. This was the first year I raced on platforms and I have to say it is a trade off. I lost a lot of pedaling effeciency on platforms but my confidence increased on the real rocky and tecnical sections and rode faster. So for me, on a course that is very technical, platforms are the way to go. I also use the platforms for my recreational rides and enjoy the ride a lot more. My old bones can't take the falls being clipped in like it used to. Platforms are more forgiving in a crash situation...
How much of the race course is a rocky technical section vs. how much of the course is climbing?
 

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Tommy - Thanks, I didn't know BMX'ers had made the switch. Makes sense. Those who think platforms are a viable option should just go out and try them in high performance, non steadystate, XC conditions. I think that would end this thread. Nobody, or practically nobody, picks platforms under those conditions.

Larry
 

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WR304, thanks for your post. I've been riding about 9 months, racing for 3 and feel like it's getting time to make the switch to clipless. I still dab a foot down about once every ride and it's good to know that you can unclip and still pedal through sketchy sections. That is just what I needed to know to make the switch. I tried clipless early on, but like tommyrod said, my skills were not up to par and I was not ready for clipless. Now it's getting to where I have to work to keep my feet on the pedals and in the right position, so I'm gonna give clipless another shot.
 

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pljam67 said:
WR304, thanks for your post. I've been riding about 9 months, racing for 3 and feel like it's getting time to make the switch to clipless. I still dab a foot down about once every ride and it's good to know that you can unclip and still pedal through sketchy sections. That is just what I needed to know to make the switch. I tried clipless early on, but like tommyrod said, my skills were not up to par and I was not ready for clipless. Now it's getting to where I have to work to keep my feet on the pedals and in the right position, so I'm gonna give clipless another shot.
That's exactly what I meant. I think it's a great idea for newer riders to start out on flats, especially if they don't have a BMX or similar background.

You'll find that once you feel confident negotiating technical terrain clipped in, the advantages far outweigh any possible drawbacks. WR304's tips are right on target.
 

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pljam67 said:
WR304, thanks for your post. I've been riding about 9 months, racing for 3 and feel like it's getting time to make the switch to clipless. I still dab a foot down about once every ride and it's good to know that you can unclip and still pedal through sketchy sections. That is just what I needed to know to make the switch. I tried clipless early on, but like tommyrod said, my skills were not up to par and I was not ready for clipless. Now it's getting to where I have to work to keep my feet on the pedals and in the right position, so I'm gonna give clipless another shot.
The golden rule with clipless pedals is to unclip first and then stop. Stopping and then trying to unclip is much harder.:)

The important thing is to make sure you have the right pedals and shoes. Some combinations have drawbacks. A good beginner pedal would be the Shimano M424 SPD pedal. It has a surrounding plastic cage (slightly less slippy than the M545 metal version when wet) which provides a larger pedalling platform for added security. It also has adjustable spring release tension.

The fit of cycling shoes is very much a personal thing. I'm using Specialized BG Expert MTB shoes at the moment (modified as per the picture in post #66) and have been quite happy with them. What works for one person may not for someone else though. What you can look out for is the sole design. Some MTB cycling shoes have awful sole designs if you ever need to walk in them or ride clipped out - things that can be important when riding offroad.:)

I've attached a couple of pictures of what not to look for in a MTB cycling shoe below. One picture compares the tread width of a Sidi Dominator 5 MTB shoe sole with a Specialized BG Expert MTB shoe sole, showing the difference in tread design and width. Ideally, you want a shoe sole which is quite wide, flat and has tread that extends to the edges of the sole for walking stability. Some mountain bike shoes (eg: Sidi Dominator 5 MTB ) have very narrow tread sections. The same tread sections are used for many sizes of Sidi shoes rather than scaling with shoe size. When you stand on them your foot and ankle isn't supported that well, especially in larger sizes. You could potentially twist your ankle as it's easy for the foot to roll over to one side. Trying to walk along a rocky track wearing high heels is one analogy.:eekster:

You need to make sure the midsoles of your MTB cycling shoes are grippy enough to be able to safely ride clipped out on top of an SPD pedal when needed. Different MTB cycling shoe sole designs are very variable. They often have bare plastic or carbon fibre midsoles. When you get some mud or water on the sole of a shoe like this there's no grip at all clipped out - your foot will slide straight off the metal SPD pedal which can be dangerous and hurt your confidence.

The picture below is the sole of a Shimano M182N MTB cycling shoe. The midsole of the Shimano M182N MTB cycling shoe consists of bare plastic with bare carbon fibre in the centre and a tiny amount of (very hard) sole material. Trying to ride clipped out on top of SPD pedals with these shoes is going to be slippery and difficult in the dry. In the wet with less friction between the plastic/ carbon fibre sole and metal pedal they're going to be lethal clipped out.

Even where the shoe's midsole isn't bare plastic or carbon fibre the covering is often too hard for the pedal to dig in. It's why I'd suggest gluing a strip of old MTB tyre over the midsole of the shoe as pictured in post #66. Tyre rubber is softer than cycling shoe tread and it means that the metal SPD pedal binding can dig into the tyre rubber providing some grip. A lightly treaded (worn) tyre also has knobs on which will help hold the pedal in place better than a smooth rubber sole. The tyre I used is an old WTB Velociraptor rear tyre.:)

Pictured below: Shimano M424 pedals have a plastic platform adding stability over smaller SPD pedals. They're a good beginner SPD pedal.

Shimano M182N MTB shoe sole is an example of a midsole that performs poorly offroad if you aren't clipped in. A bare plastic and carbon fibre midsole is very slippery with little friction or grip when wet.

Sidi Dominator 5 MTB and Specialized BG Expert MTB sole comparison. The Sidi sole's tread is narrow and doesn't extend fully to the end of the show making it unstable when walking.
 

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namagomi
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tommyrod74 said:
"Take a chill pill tommy, you're jumping up and down on me like some excited cocker-spaniel.

What I am telling you is that XC racing is much different that road racing."

I road race as well, often in pro/1/2/3/fields and against former national champions in masters 35+. And I'm here to tell you that if I didn't have to occasionally clip out to run a section of an xc race (usually because of a rider in front not being able to ride a climb), I would actually run road shoes and pedals off-road to save weight, and have done so on some non-techy courses.

"The only place i think the added efficiency of clips would be clear is track racing. If you think 5% - note that was a maximum and only an efficiency number(not a finishing time) - is what is holding you back then congrats you really are an elite pro. Which team do you ride for? "

I race for the Gary Fisher (now Trek) 29er Crew. Cat 1, usually podium, 4 wins this past season, targeting a pro license withing the next 2 seasons. And yes, 5 % improvement in FTP would be a big difference in my power profile. Anyone who trains with a power metric would agree, especially after they have been training for a few years and big improvements are hard to come by. In my case, that would be 15-20 watts improvement, enough to make a noticeable difference.

Of course, I'm fully aware that 5% was simply a number the author pulled out of his ass, with only his "observations" to attribute it to.

"Further the improvement in efficiency is a result of having a better cadence, if you're spinning 120rpm enough on an xc race to make that clips worth your time congrats, you chose too low a gear for your singlespeed!"

Nope, 1 X 10, and my average off-road cadence is ~ 85-90. I just like to be able to pull up on the pedals while climbing out of the saddle. Pretty sure that this is an advantage. Also pretty sure that every study I've seen on cadence shows that the most efficient cadence varies from individual to individual. You wouldn't just make stuff up, now, would you?

"Yes, i think anything that allows you to not hit the brakes will make you much faster... I have seen a lot of clipless guys eat **** on corners or slow waaay down. Personally i think they would be better off if somebody, like you, wasn't trying to ram clipless pedals down their throats and ruin their confidence."

I would ask you again... who are you riding with? In my Cat 1 races, I have NEVER seen anyone take a corner slowly or crash due to clipless pedals. Never heard anyone remark after a race that they had wished they weren't clipped in.

If the vast majority of BMX racers (some as young as 5!) are on clipless pedals... you are a lone voice in the wilderness, and no one is listening. Except me, obviously, and only because you are annoying me.

I'll say it again - the only reason clipless could be a detriment for XC racing would be if the rider in question LACKS THE BASIC SKILLS TO BE RACING A BICYCLE IN THE WOODS IN THE FIRST PLACE. Was that clear enough?
:rolleyes:

This isn't about you, silly man, the OP was asking clips/flats. If you are annoyed and can't stop yourself from spazzing out... leave!

With that, how about instead of you telling everybody they suck you present your case that clipless clearly is superior for mtb. This should be easy for you!

I am waiting...
 

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electrik said:
:rolleyes:

This isn't about you, silly man, the OP was asking clips/flats. If you are annoyed and can't stop yourself from spazzing out... leave!

With that, how about instead of you telling everybody they suck you present your case that clipless clearly is superior for mtb. This should be easy for you!

I am waiting...
Can you post the results of an elite/cat 1 XC race where the winner wore flat pedals in the race? I think you are missing the point that this is an XC racing/training forum. We're not talking about what is "superior for mtb", but what is superior for XC racing.
 

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namagomi
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_tom_ said:
Can you post the results of an elite/cat 1 XC race where the winner wore flat pedals in the race? I think you are missing the point that this is an XC racing/training forum. We're not talking about what is "superior for mtb", but what is superior for XC racing.
Sure, but everybody wore clipless probably. I just want to know, where is some actual evidence clipless are clearly superior and not just incidental or trendy. A lot of people have tried to call me out for making such an obvious statement - the emperor has new clothes?

Give me the data to justify these claims that you need clipless shoes to be a winner.
 

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1,886 Posts
electrik said:
Sure, but everybody wore clipless probably. I just want to know, where is some actual evidence clipless are clearly superior and not just incidental or trendy. A lot of people have tried to call me out for making such an obvious statement - the emperor has new clothes?

Give me the data to justify these claims that you need clipless shoes to be a winner.
You do know that flat pedals have existed for a lot longer than clipless, right? If flats were better, and they were here first, then why would everyone make the switch?

Here's an idea... Do what you have to do to upgrade to Cat 1 (yes, it might take a while, we'll wait) and then make the podium... all on flats. Hell, do it in a Cat 2 race with a decent field. Report back and let us know he that goes.

Or if you can't do it, just convince a Cat 1 to do an XC race that matters on flats. Surely your impeccable logic will sway them! Be sure to reference "the emperor's new clothes", that one's a winner.

I mean, it should be easy... right?
 
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