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Unclipping issue

Old 11-09-20, 11:21 AM
  #26  
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Why would cyclists in their 70s even be riding with clipless? Of course, if you race you might want maximum power and a more secure connection to the pedals when sprinting, but how many non-racing cyclists in their 70s care about such things. I'm 72 and have used platforms on all my bikes for at least ten years. They work great for me and there are no issues with clipping in or out. I use platforms that have the little suds, which supply a very secure connection with no hassle. Plus, I can move my foot position if I so desire. Of course it is a personal choice, but I would think safety is the most important consideration at my age.
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Old 11-09-20, 03:13 PM
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I always unclip on the left, because the left side of the road is slightly higher due to the crown on most roads. But unclipping on the right isn't wrong and you should stick with it if that's what you're used to. The other thing I do is, right before coming to a stop, I steer AWAY from the unclipped foot. That causes the bike to fall toward the unclipped foot and would help prevent falling toward the clipped-in foot. If that doesn't work for you, maybe you should stop using clipless.

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Old 11-09-20, 03:29 PM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by jackb View Post
Why would cyclists in their 70s even be riding with clipless? Of course, if you race you might want maximum power and a more secure connection to the pedals when sprinting, but how many non-racing cyclists in their 70s care about such things. I'm 72 and have used platforms on all my bikes for at least ten years. They work great for me and there are no issues with clipping in or out. I use platforms that have the little suds, which supply a very secure connection with no hassle. Plus, I can move my foot position if I so desire. Of course it is a personal choice, but I would think safety is the most important consideration at my age.
What in the hell does age have to do with it at all? Thereís an age requirement on pedals now?

That may be the stupidest thing Iíve heard about pedals ever.
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Old 11-09-20, 08:24 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by jackb View Post
Why would cyclists in their 70s even be riding with clipless? Of course, if you race you might want maximum power and a more secure connection to the pedals when sprinting, but how many non-racing cyclists in their 70s care about such things. I'm 72 and have used platforms on all my bikes for at least ten years. They work great for me and there are no issues with clipping in or out. I use platforms that have the little suds, which supply a very secure connection with no hassle. Plus, I can move my foot position if I so desire. Of course it is a personal choice, but I would think safety is the most important consideration at my age.
Because riding with cleats gives you a better experience, irrespective of speed. You feel better connected to the bike. Many of us love the experience. I will be very sad when/if the day comes that I can no longer do it.
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Old 11-09-20, 08:30 PM
  #30  
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A couple of comments to the OP.

1. As has been said already, this is mostly a balance issue, not a pedal system issue. A few times - maybe 3 or 4 in 10 years, when coming to a stop I had my weight on the wrong side as I came to a stop and unclipped. In my case, I always unclip on the left. Tombay! The only consolation is that at zero speed, I've never been injured this way. But in thousands of stop/dismount/unclip sequences, I pretty much always manage to have my body positioned so that my weight is a little to the left as I unclip. I'm guessing that you've always done the same (except to your right) I don't want to alarm you, but maybe this is the first sign of a larger balance issue?

2. I ride SPD-SLs, Look Keo style, and SPDs. SPD-SLs are in the middle of this group for ease of unclipping. SPDs, being MTB pedals, are easier to get in and out of. consider trying them.
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Old 11-09-20, 08:43 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
What in the hell does age have to do with it at all? Thereís an age requirement on pedals now?

That may be the stupidest thing Iíve heard about pedals ever.
Age has everything to do with pedals as it has to do with almost all elements of cycling. As the OP pointed out, he is having a little trouble unclipping now that he is older. I understand completely. I'm not as flexible as I once was, I'm a bit more clumsy, not as strong, and not quite as balanced on the bike. It's easier and safer for me, and, I assume, others who are feeling the effects of age, to simply take your foot off the pedal rather than unclip. What's the big deal? If you are an older rider and feel uncomfortable with clipless, switch to something else, as some of us have done. If you prefer clipless, there you go.
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Old 11-09-20, 09:22 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by jackb View Post
Why would cyclists in their 70s even be riding with clipless? Of course, if you race you might want maximum power and a more secure connection to the pedals when sprinting, but how many non-racing cyclists in their 70s care about such things. I'm 72 and have used platforms on all my bikes for at least ten years. They work great for me and there are no issues with clipping in or out. I use platforms that have the little suds, which supply a very secure connection with no hassle. Plus, I can move my foot position if I so desire. Of course it is a personal choice, but I would think safety is the most important consideration at my age.
IMO and IME clipless are safer. My feet are always attached to the pedals unless I don't want them to be. Thus I'm pretty much immune to losing contact with a pedal at high cadences and having it come around and hit my lower leg, especially a pedal with studs on it! Yeeesh! I'm 75. I know riders over 80 who still ride strong and use clipless. Like 150+ miles and 10,000' day rides. All the cyclists I know and ride with, regardless of age, use clipless.
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Old 11-09-20, 09:35 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by jackb View Post
Age has everything to do with pedals as it has to do with almost all elements of cycling. As the OP pointed out, he is having a little trouble unclipping now that he is older. I understand completely. I'm not as flexible as I once was, I'm a bit more clumsy, not as strong, and not quite as balanced on the bike. It's easier and safer for me, and, I assume, others who are feeling the effects of age, to simply take your foot off the pedal rather than unclip. What's the big deal? If you are an older rider and feel uncomfortable with clipless, switch to something else, as some of us have done. If you prefer clipless, there you go.
Maybe both of you guys need to meet some of the guys in their 70s and higher who can blow the doors off riders much younger than they are. To make a statement that someone in their 70s should not be using clipless pedals is patently absurd.

You do you and leave it at that. Projecting your issues on others is wrong.
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Old 11-10-20, 11:45 AM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
Maybe both of you guys need to meet some of the guys in their 70s and higher who can blow the doors off riders much younger than they are. To make a statement that someone in their 70s should not be using clipless pedals is patently absurd.

You do you and leave it at that. Projecting your issues on others is wrong.
I did not say that people in their 70's should not be using clipless. Please go back and reread my posts. As for leaving it at that, that is precisely what I said: "If you are an older rider and feel uncomfortable with clipless, switch to something else, as some of us have done. If you prefer clipless, there you go." This is a discussion forum in which participants share their views, which is what I did.
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Old 11-11-20, 12:26 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by jackb View Post
I did not say that people in their 70's should not be using clipless. Please go back and reread my posts. As for leaving it at that, that is precisely what I said: "If you are an older rider and feel uncomfortable with clipless, switch to something else, as some of us have done. If you prefer clipless, there you go." This is a discussion forum in which participants share their views, which is what I did.
my apologies - I take your point.

That said, the position of the the OP is completely indefensible.
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Old 11-11-20, 01:20 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by Senior Vagabond View Post
I am right-handed which probably lends itself to my natural right side. I don't really think it matters too much which side you unclip when rolling to a stop as long as you are comfortable with it. I think the concept of unclipping on the side of the road you drive on comes from the idea that if you fall off on when unclipping you do not want to risk spilling out into oncoming traffic. Also if you are riding in the city with curbs it gives you a place to put your foot on. I have attached a link to one of the videos on unclipping from GCN. All in, the best practice is what comes naturally to you and works.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qsANKHyVnbk
What apparently is natural to you apparently isn't working fully. Otherwise you wouldn't have ask. <grin>

Have you considered as others mentioned that maybe your pedals and/or cleats are old and don't release as well as they should? Or that maybe your cleats position on the shoe shifted a little making you have to twist more and harder to click out?
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Old 11-15-20, 01:04 PM
  #37  
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I thought everybody follows the same rules mounting a bike and which foot goes down at stop lights, but obviously I am benighted in that view as this discussion makes clear.

I mount my bike standing on the left of it, put my right leg over and insert it into the toe clip and then as I start moving, I insert the left foot into the cleat. But at stop light, it is the right foot that I take off the pedal and rest on - if there is a curb to rest my right foot on. If there is no curb, I believe I tend to dismount my left foot but really can use both sides quite naturally.

Now at 63 I got clipless pedals for the first time in my life (got me a secondhand 'new' bike that would be out of place to ride with toe clips/straps). I didn't ride it yet as it took a bit to shop for shoes (SPD) and threads like these fill me with anticipation how it will go. I hope it will be just as natural as with the toe clips (btw I have the clip straps adjusted just snug, so I don't need to tighten or release tension to get in/out, makes life so much simpler).

After I screwed clips on one shoe, I clipped it for a trial 'dry run' on a pedal while holding the shoe just in my hand and had hard time releasing it because I didn't tighten the cleat enough and it was turning on the sole and would not release. I'd check for shifting of the cleat as pointed out by preceding posters.

I bought two SPD shoes, one because it was on a big discount and with universal SPD & SL mounts but flat sole, so inadequately tightened SPD clip would tend to swivel if not properly tightened. The other shoes I got have a groove for metal plate kind and those are much more resistant to the clip swiveling due to insufficient tightening.

Last edited by vane171; 11-15-20 at 01:16 PM.
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Old 11-15-20, 01:11 PM
  #38  
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For what it's worth, I am an LBKA and simply cannot physically unclip from my left side while NOT standing.

For using clips I went two different ways according to the ride. I prefer egg beaters with worn cleats. They are easy to clip in and out of and work super well seated. I will not peddle standing while using these. As a side I like these because the shoe is something I can walk around in.

I also use some 105 SPD "street" pedals. I can stand and pedal even with the prosthesis and feel secure that I am not going to come out. Just the same, I can't get out of these without some effort on my part. I cannot walk around in the shoes as I slip too much.

I started doing some social rides and was used to using clips at the time. I had a couple of issues with almost falling over in areas that I could not control where I had to stop due to the surrounding crowd. I opted to move to platform pedals for these activities. I still have to 'toe in' the foot I use for cycling, so my gait isn't awesome this way but I can walk around in regular shoes which is a huge bonus to the above, for me.
To me the biggest detractor from going to platforms was the locked in location of the foot, particularly in relation to high cadence, along with the differing curve in which you can apply power. From a safety standpoint it was a no brainer.
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Old 11-20-20, 05:58 PM
  #39  
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I just use toeclips and straps, as I have for 52 years. I keep them just barely loose enough to let me pull either foot out. Problem solved.
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Old 11-21-20, 06:28 AM
  #40  
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Uhh, switch to platform pedals.
Unless you believe it may cost you a spot on the podium ofc...
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Old 11-21-20, 06:30 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
What in the hell does age have to do with it at all? Thereís an age requirement on pedals now?

That may be the stupidest thing Iíve heard about pedals ever.
Seriously?
The very first person to reply also referenced age affecting the ability to use clipless.
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Old 11-21-20, 07:45 AM
  #42  
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If your method has worked for years and now doesn't, I agree that you should try some exercises to improve your balance. I mount from the left and put the left foot down at stops. Being consistent and in synch with the slope of the road seems simpler. Urban riding with curbs to utilize might be different. Anyway, try a few things before you give up on your pedals and perhaps diminish your riding experience.
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Old 11-21-20, 03:25 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by downhillmaster View Post
Seriously?
The very first person to reply also referenced age affecting the ability to use clipless.
Yeah, it is stupid. Age has nothing to do with it.
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Old 11-21-20, 05:34 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
Yeah, it is stupid. Age has nothing to do with it.
Itís ok if you are having a tough time coming to terms with the potential ill effects of getting older.
Even if it is someone else it can hit home I guess
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Old 11-21-20, 07:58 PM
  #45  
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With MTB shoes\, pedals and cleats I fell a few times when stopping suddenly in order to avoid getting hit by a car. I had the release set for the lowest tension with those pedals. What happened is that I'd try to unclip when the foot was at the 12 o'clock position and the bike leaned to the opposite I was unclipping from with the lower foot.

I went back to toe-clips and straps or original type Look pedals. I have no problems getting out of either in a sudden stop. I wear smoothe sole bicycling shoes with the toe-clip pedals.

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Old 11-22-20, 10:57 AM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by downhillmaster View Post
Itís ok if you are having a tough time coming to terms with the potential ill effects of getting older.
Even if it is someone else it can hit home I guess
Iím right in that age category and I have no issues. I ride with an entire group of roadies of that age, none of whom would even think to ride without clipless pedals. A simple search in these forums will show many people of a variety of ages who have trouble for a variety of reasons with clipless pedals. One does not all of a sudden age out of clipless pedals.

Iíd hate to discourage someone who could benefit from using them from thinking that they canít because theyíre ďtoo old.Ē

So, yeah, itís a stupid statement to make. Age has nothing to do with it. But good try with the passive aggressive dig.
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Old 11-22-20, 12:53 PM
  #47  
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This thread has nothing to do with pedals. As others have noted it has to do with balance.

Pretty simple exercise for everyone. Unclip, pull off, or just otherwise remove your foot off your normal side, put your leg out/down, and lean the wrong way as you completely stop. The vast majority of people will fall no matter what pedals they have.

A few people do not favor a side, and it is not as much of a problem, but the reaction time for most people who favor a particular foot release side probably won’t be fast enough.

The one truth for “most” people as they age is a loss of balance. It has been almost a year since I was in the water, but I have noticed my balance is not quite as good. I actually did the “lean the wrong way” for the first time earlier this year. Hopefully I’ll get out there soon. I have a goal of riding a few waves when I turn 70 in a little more than a year.

I need to get back to balancing on a Bosu ball, hard plastic side. I have noticed that even non-technical mtb riding helps some with balance.

John

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Old 11-22-20, 02:19 PM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by 70sSanO View Post
This thread has nothing to do with pedals. As others have noted it has to do with balance.
Yes, agree. To this, I'd also add "coordination." There does seem to be a number of people, again without respect to age, that have difficulties with removing the wrong foot from the pedal and then falling. It's fairly common in any of the discussions about new-to-clipless users. So I'd say that overall athleticism and body sense (including balance) are the factors that matter.

It's completely possible to retain or improve one's athleticism as one ages, but it takes work. That said, a younger athlete who doesn't continue to train will also lose athleticism too. In a lot of ways, age is just often used as another excuse (one of a many that are common) to not do the work to retain it.

I started riding with toe clips and nailed on cleats. You simply could not remove your foot from the pedal unless you would reach down and release the toe clip strap. When clipless first came out in the early '80s with Look's delta style pedals (similar to what is available today), I bought a set immediately. I'd have to say that I've never ever had a problem with releasing them - always seemed a lot easier than track standing at stoplights.

So bottom line here - I'd encourage any rider with adequate coordination, balance and athleticism to use clipless pedals if they want to do a lot of riding.
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Old 11-22-20, 03:19 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
I started riding with toe clips and nailed on cleats. You simply could not remove your foot from the pedal unless you would reach down and release the toe clip strap.
This is how I started, except my cleats were not nailed on. Except for riding in traffic with a lot of lights and I kept one strap loose, I would always reach down and loosened my right strap. It is a learned technique, but only one foot comes out so you learn to remove that foot.

Unless someone makes a concerted effort to change and learn to remove either foot, it just stays like that regardless of pedal type. Even on platform pedals the right foot goes down.

John
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Old 11-22-20, 03:45 PM
  #50  
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One aspect could be the leg/ankle doesn’t have the flexibility to rotate the foot far enough to effect a pedal release. One option, if using clipless, is to adjust the cleats so that the pointy front is turned towards the inside of the shoe. This changes the point where the pedal releases, makes it easier to get out of the pedal.
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