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fell twice in two days :(

Old 07-17-21, 12:58 PM
  #1  
gurana
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fell twice in two days :(

After returning to riding a couple of years ago, I finally put clipless pedals back on my non-commuter bikes. Having not used them for many years I did the sensible thing and practiced with them like I did when they were new to me. Surprisingly I went like a month without incident.

I don't really think clipless pedals are super complicated. Including today, I've only fallen because of them like 5 times since 2004 that I can recall. It's not something that I really thought about to be honest. The first time I did it in front of other cyclists I had successfully unclipped but actually clipped back in when I went to put my foot down. I kind of consider that to be a freak accident. The other times it was simple inattentiveness.

Fast forward to yesterday. I'm at a traffic light at a huge intersection. It's up hill and I just wasn't really paying attention to my pedals. I was looking at traffic and the light and as I slowed down unclipped my right foot as I started leaning left. I simply panicked in the moment and instead of even trying to unclip I just kind of accepted my fate and fell.

Then earlier today I was on a multi-use trail with a short but steep hill leading up to an intersection. I went in hot just to get up the hill and was going to stop at the top to check traffic. At the top, a car slammed on their brakes and honked their horn... Startled and distracted at the critical moment, I fell in very much the same way as the day before. My only regret in the situation is that there's no simple way for me to convey to the person in the car, "Hey, I know it looked like I was just going to blow across the street without looking, and it appears that you had to slam your brakes to avoid hitting me and then I got scared and fell. I assure you that I was always going to stop here and I just got startled and fell because I'm still getting the hang of these pedals apparently. Further, I definitely am the one that messed up here as there was no real way for you to know my intentions. I'll do better about approaching this crossing in the future. BTW, thanks for looking out in the first place as I'm sure this particular intersection is an issue."

Anyways, I went about my ride and kind of forgot about both incidents. That is, until I got to my house and as I'm slowing down and unclipping, I had to actually think about *not* leaning left when my right foot came out and I came to a stop. Now, apparently, I'm in my head about this whole stupid thing. Is something wrong with my bike, or am I just imagining this draw towards my left side? I guess I'll find out tomorrow.
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Old 07-17-21, 01:08 PM
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I loved these Never worried about a fall.
Half Clips. Size 13 shoes
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Old 07-17-21, 01:53 PM
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It happens. Thankfully not for quite some time. Like flats, they tend to happen in groups of three. Then nothing for years.

So you got one more coming.
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Old 07-17-21, 01:59 PM
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I wonder if it would be easier to put clipless on all or none of the bikes.

Having half and half could be problematic.

Plan ahead... I suppose if you were planning to "track stand" at the top of the hill and not unclip, that could have complicated things a bit.

My worst problem is on my own driveway when I can lose traction. But, I've learned my lesson and will just bail if I lose forward momentum.
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Old 07-17-21, 02:03 PM
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Since you seem to naturally lean to the left when stopping, why not unclip and put down your left foot? I don't guess it matters which foot goes down but being consistent helps until you become more accustomed to the pedals.
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Old 07-17-21, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
I wonder if it would be easier to put clipless on all or none of the bikes.

Having half and half could be problematic.

Plan ahead... I suppose if you were planning to "track stand" at the top of the hill and not unclip, that could have complicated things a bit.

My worst problem is on my own driveway when I can lose traction. But, I've learned my lesson and will just bail if I lose forward momentum.
Eh, that's a consideration, but at the moment it's more like 2 of 3 have clipless pedals, the third is flats, and I haven't ridden that in months since I'm not really commuting to work at the moment. At the moment, it's just a weird outlier that they happend back-to-back... BUT if it does keep happening maybe I'll just switch to flats to save myself
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Old 07-17-21, 02:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
It happens. Thankfully not for quite some time. Like flats, they tend to happen in groups of three. Then nothing for years.

So you got one more coming.
It would have been SO easy for you not to put that bee in my bonnet.

Thanks... I guess
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Old 07-17-21, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
Since you seem to naturally lean to the left when stopping, why not unclip and put down your left foot? I don't guess it matters which foot goes down but being consistent helps until you become more accustomed to the pedals.
I simply never thought of it. I often stop more often on the right so I can put my foot down on a curb, but in the absence of that, I'm pretty ambidextrous in terms of leaning... or I thought I was. Now it's probably all I'll think about until I don't.
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Old 07-17-21, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
I loved these Never worried about a fall.
Half Clips. Size 13 shoes
I've never tried that style. I'm pretty ok with just flats. I like clipless, but I don't feel it's a necessity to my style of riding. Maybe some day I'll give it a shot, or put these kind on my commuter.
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Old 07-17-21, 02:22 PM
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Originally Posted by gurana View Post
It would have been SO easy for you not to put that bee in my bonnet.

Thanks... I guess
You are welcome.

I eventually learned to unclip one foot anytime there is the slightest possibility of having to stop.

As for when it happens, I just roll with it, literally. I stick my knee out ever so slightly so I hit on the side of my lower leg first, the let the impact progress along my leg to my hip and roll over on my back. All the while keeping my hands firmly on my handlebars, which is where I feel the best place is for them in any crash.

Reaching out with your arms is just asking for a broke collar bone IMO.
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Old 07-17-21, 02:50 PM
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Did you mention the type of pedals?

Most have a tension adjustment.

If you pull up, and climb hills out of the seat pulling up, then you need a reasonably tight tension.

If not, then you can lower the tension a lot.

For SPD, Shimano has "multirelease" which is supposed to be much easier to extract the feet from than Standard, but I've personally been avoiding them.
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Old 07-17-21, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
You are welcome.

I eventually learned to unclip one foot anytime there is the slightest possibility of having to stop.

As for when it happens, I just roll with it, literally. I stick my knee out ever so slightly so I hit on the side of my lower leg first, the let the impact progress along my leg to my hip and roll over on my back. All the while keeping my hands firmly on my handlebars, which is where I feel the best place is for them in any crash.

Reaching out with your arms is just asking for a broke collar bone IMO.
Lucky for me, reaching out with my arm is not my natural reaction. Keep my hands on pedals handlebars and land on shoulder\hip. So far, I have yet to fall in such a way that it actually hurts anything more than my pride.

edit:HANDLEBARS! I don't think grabbing onto the pedals will help in this situation.
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Old 07-17-21, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
Did you mention the type of pedals?

Most have a tension adjustment.

If you pull up, and climb hills out of the seat pulling up, then you need a reasonably tight tension.

If not, then you can lower the tension a lot.

For SPD, Shimano has "multirelease" which is supposed to be much easier to extract the feet from than Standard, but I've personally been avoiding them.
My original clipless set up was look. However, in my advancing years I prefer to have a walkable shoe I went with Crank Bros Candys (Candies?... seems werid to make it plural when it's the name of a thing) which I believe are the only major style of clipless with no option to adjust tension. That said, It's pretty easy to unclip, though I don't have any experience with how well it keeps me clipped in when I'm really laying the power down... mostly because I don't really ever do that.
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Old 07-17-21, 04:39 PM
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it happens, & it's more of ooooof than pain imo lol.

I rarely unclip out of the DS. Just a comfort thing for me, although, I do notice those that tend to unclip out of the DS tend to have inner leg chain markings.
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Old 07-17-21, 06:41 PM
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Originally Posted by gurana View Post
I simply never thought of it. I often stop more often on the right so I can put my foot down on a curb, but in the absence of that, I'm pretty ambidextrous in terms of leaning... or I thought I was. Now it's probably all I'll think about until I don't.
I'm a left foot release out and down and am somewhat jealous of those who are right-inclined and can use the curb when they stop!
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Old 07-17-21, 07:13 PM
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I suppose I never think about unclipping with a curb to my right. More often than not there is a ditch to my right (or, of course, flat pavement).

So, the right foot remains clipped in for the power take off. Left foot comes out.

While flopping into a ditch might be bad, flopping into a traffic lane is worse.

BE VERY CAREFUL.

If this was to continue to be a problem, then I'd encourage going back to flats, or something else. Pinned pedals are relatively new... at least for me.

Toe clips, and heel down, and the foot usually goes straight out and down.
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Old 07-18-21, 05:33 AM
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I almost always unclip my right foot and lean right--away from traffic. However, thanks to Mr. Newton, unclipping on the right creates a force to the left---into traffic. Normally I unconsciously lean to compensate. There have been a few occasions where I came Very close to falling left---but it has been many years since I did a clip-fall. However, it could have happened at any of those close calls .... or at any time hereafter. Mostly it happens in situations like you described---other things going on, a sudden or unusually forceful unclip, a startling incident ..... Stuff happens.

You are fine. Just ride on.
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Old 07-18-21, 06:06 AM
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Always left out and down, well in advance. Forget the curb or anything else, if it is a puddle so be it, it's automatic.
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Old 07-18-21, 06:16 AM
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Similar thing happened to me. Clipped out on right but went over on left side. I now unclip both sides to be safe.
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Old 07-18-21, 07:03 AM
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Don’t fall off your bike. Don’t use parts that make you fall off your bike. If clipless pedals make you fall don’t use clipless pedals.

It does not just happen. It does not happen to everyone. Some of us never fall from using clipless. Some of us never fall from using clips and straps. Some of us never fall from using clips and straps with slotted cleats.

Are you made of rubber? Are you sure you can fall now and then, occasionally, once in a while, and never be injured? You want to bet on how badly you will be injured? Is using what the pros use so important you want to be injured?
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Old 07-18-21, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by 63rickert View Post
Donít fall off your bike. Donít use parts that make you fall off your bike. If clipless pedals make you fall donít use clipless pedals.

It does not just happen. It does not happen to everyone. Some of us never fall from using clipless. Some of us never fall from using clips and straps. Some of us never fall from using clips and straps with slotted cleats.

Are you made of rubber? Are you sure you can fall now and then, occasionally, once in a while, and never be injured? You want to bet on how badly you will be injured? Is using what the pros use so important you want to be injured?
Agreed, except I suspect the OP isnít using clipless to be like the pros.

You may get people saying this is harsh, but I agree- thereís enough for me to think about and watch out for without having to manage a major contact point that carefully. I also am not willing to fall, even so rarely, because of a part on my bike.

Clipless, for me, donít provide enough of an advantage to make their downsides worth it. They donít help me put down more power, partly because I just worry about coming unclipped, and where I ride requires too much unclipping.

The half clips that 10 Wheels posted above are similar to ones I used for years, and I also think theyíre the way to go: they provide some surety of location on the pedal without requiring planning and management of your movements during the ride.
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Old 07-18-21, 07:57 AM
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I'm still trying to understand why one would unclip with their right foot and lean left. What am I missing?
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Old 07-18-21, 08:03 AM
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Originally Posted by gurana View Post
...Now, apparently, I'm in my head about this whole stupid thing.
Normally my advice for over-thinking os to "pedal harder"...but that wouldn't work in this situation.

Perhaps this would be the time to take advantage of the extended membership discount to "Club Tombay"...
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Old 07-18-21, 08:12 AM
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First, falling because you didnt unclip in time happens to all of us. Suggestions, Adjust the clip tension if possible or buy a set of pedals/clips that are easier to disconnect like frogs and lastly more practice. Best wishes
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Old 07-18-21, 08:15 AM
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It gets better.

If not, try flats that don't suck. Diety Deftrap


Last edited by Kapusta; 07-18-21 at 08:19 AM.
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