How to Secure Your Cycling Shoes Like a Pro

I know that I am not the only one who faced this problem. The first time I tried cycling lessons, the instructor helped me to my feet, wearing borrowed cycling shoes attached to the pedals. The second time I was on my own and played two full songs, kicking my feet on the pedals in the dark and praying for some miracle.

Specialty cycling shoes usually use spikes on the bottom of the shoe and a matching spring loaded clip on the pedals. SPD cleats are the most common type you will likely see in class. (Pro tip: These are called “no clips” pedals even if you need to clip them because clips, also known as toe clips, are something completely different .)

The video above should help demystify the proximity pedals for beginners like me, or help you secure them faster and smoother if you already know how. Here are some basic tips to keep in mind:

  • Pick one side and only learn from that side.
  • The sequence of actions is as follows: turn the pedal over; insert the front of the cleat into the front of the clip; and then push down to secure the back of the cleat.
  • Begin the process when the pedal rises to the top of the cycle, at about 10 o’clock if the pedal is moving clockwise.
  • Increase resistance (or, on a real bike, start with a harder gear).

These tips will help you avoid the awkwardness at the beginning of an indoor cycling lesson. Once you really get the hang of it, consider showing your new-found confidence on the road!


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