Bike Training Tip – How to safely clip in and out of bike pedals
Cyclists, new to clip-in style bike shoes and pedals often fall while starting or stopping their bike at an intersection. These falls can usually be avoided by using the starting and stopping steps below.
- Clip in one shoe.
- Bring clipped in foot up to 3 o’clock position. At this position, the foot is in front of chain ring and half way between the low and high points of the pedal stroke.
- Push hard on the clipped in foot while pushing off the ground with other foot.
- Do NOT try to clip in that second foot right away. There is not enough speed yet to balance on the bike.
- Keep pedaling with that clipped in foot, single leg style, until you have enough speed to balance and coast. You can also put the unclipped shoe on the pedal, but do NOT clip it in. Just set it on the pedal for balance until you have a chance to safely clip it in.
- When safely gliding with balance, now clip in.
- While slowing down for the stop, shift into an easier gear so you can get re-started without pushing a hard gear.
- Unclip one foot while you still have enough speed to balance. Don’t wait until the last minute to unclip.
- Always unclip the same foot!
- Slowly squeeze brakes.
- When almost stopped, slide off the seat and put the unclipped foot down while “leaning” just a bit to the unclipped side.
- While you’re at the stop, NEVER stay straight up, always keep leaning to the unclipped side.
Of special note and concern is UPHILL clip-ins. These are the most common falls. If you must clip-in uphill, it is critical to follow the “starting” steps above, especially the one about not clipping in too early.
Joe LoPresto is the Founder, Head Coach and Race Director of Experience Triathlon. As leaders in the endurance services industry, Coach Joe and the Experience Triathlon Leadership Team help athletes of all ages and abilities achieve success in every aspect of their lives. Learn more about Coach Joe and Experience Triathlon at www.experiencetriathlon.com.