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Bike shoe tongue rub

Old 05-20-22, 10:59 AM
  #1  
pennpaul
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Bike shoe tongue rub

I wear Sidi Megas on my gravel bike (which is now on a Wahoo Kickr). The Sidis have a stiff leather-ish tongue material and the top of the tongue rubs the top of my left foot over the ankle through the sock. Maybe IRL I move around enough that I don't notice it, but on the trainer it's very obvious. On a 10 miler, eh, not so bad. After a 35miler last weekend, I got a blister there.

My Shimanos on the road bike have a soft upper tongue material so no problem there.

Is there maybe a soft pad I could stick on the tongue that will provide comfort? I thought of wearing a bandaid on my foot over that spot, but I think that would bother me. And I'd rather not cut the tongue shorter because it might just start rubbing lower. Everything else about the shoes is fine.

Thanks
Paul
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Old 05-20-22, 11:06 AM
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masi61
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pennpaul - the top strap on Sidi's can be offset a little by playing around with the plastic clicks where it inserts into the shoe. Maybe if that could be offset slightly the tongue pressure on your upper ankle would not be so bad. Also, can you just loosen the tongue ratcheting buckle a little?
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Old 05-20-22, 11:27 PM
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Interesting. I've used Sidi Genius for over 10 years on my road bike. This year, I needed new MTB shoes so, having loved the Genius, I bought a new pair of Dominators in the same size. They have 2 boa-like closures, the top one with a strap. I also feel the edge of the tongue pressing into the front of my ankle. I never experienced this with the road shoes - they were super comfortable from day 1. I'm going to look closely and see if maybe I can work the stiffness out of the tongue.

As an aside, I don't think these Dominators fit me as well as the Genius of the same size do. They just seem a bit roomy. I thought maybe I'd been sent a pair of Mega accidentally, but both the shoe box and the shoes themselves indicate they're regular sizing. It could just be a roomier toe box which evidentially it has. I'm not nearly as happy with these as I am with the Genius. Don't really like Sidi's version of the boa closure either. Too fussy. I'll give them a few more weeks and see if I'm going to keep them.
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Old 05-21-22, 05:53 AM
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Originally Posted by pennpaul View Post
I wear Sidi Megas on my gravel bike (which is now on a Wahoo Kickr). The Sidis have a stiff leather-ish tongue material and the top of the tongue rubs the top of my left foot over the ankle through the sock. Maybe IRL I move around enough that I don't notice it, but on the trainer it's very obvious. On a 10 miler, eh, not so bad. After a 35miler last weekend, I got a blister there.

My Shimanos on the road bike have a soft upper tongue material so no problem there.

Is there maybe a soft pad I could stick on the tongue that will provide comfort? I thought of wearing a bandaid on my foot over that spot, but I think that would bother me. And I'd rather not cut the tongue shorter because it might just start rubbing lower. Everything else about the shoes is fine.
Not familiar with your particular shoe but I had this issue on a pair of shoes once and I just snipped the tongue in a couple of places so it could splay out and not focus the force on the center of the tongue. Worked a treat.
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Old 05-21-22, 09:54 AM
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Steve B.
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So what's the question ?, the Sidi's don't work, use the Shimano's.
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Old 05-22-22, 05:39 AM
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KerryIrons
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Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
So what's the question ?, the Sidi's don't work, use the Shimano's.
The Sidi's what don't work? Use the Shimano's what? Or do you just suffer from hyperapostrephication and randomly stick apostrophes in where they don't belong?
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Old 05-22-22, 06:47 AM
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Steve B.
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Originally Posted by KerryIrons View Post
The Sidi's what don't work? Use the Shimano's what? Or do you just suffer from hyperapostrephication and randomly stick apostrophes in where they don't belong?
Good one. Had I stayed awake during Mrs. Phimsters 5th grade English class, I might actually know how to correctly use an apostrophe.
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Old 05-22-22, 05:42 PM
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Clip the tongue

After riding Sdis for years I just got a new pair of Megas. As usual it had an instructional paper in the box. I happened to actually look at it. It showed that the top of the tongue should be clipped with scissors along the serrated lines. I took my current Dominators and clipped every other line. What a difference it makes. Wish I had figured this out sooner. You might want to try clipping the tongue.
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Old 05-23-22, 07:54 AM
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Do your Sidi shoes have a tongue that has little slits in it like this?



If so, you should cut them so they look like this:


This seemed crazy to me at first, and I was hesitant to cut slits into my fancy new Italian shoes, but after talking to many other Sidi owners this is typical and completely solved my problem of the top of the tongue rubbing against my foot.
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Old 05-23-22, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by pennpaul View Post
Is there maybe a soft pad I could stick on the tongue that will provide comfort? I thought of wearing a bandaid on my foot over that spot, but I think that would bother me.
So, I went through a similar situation with a pair of kicks that were rubbing the crap out of my pinky toe (I was doing a lot of HIIT training). I ended up buying 1” wide Velcro strips with adhesive backing, and used the soft side (loop part) and stuck it inside the shoe. Worked perfectly. The best part is you can “stack” the Velcro to your desired thickness for extra padding. =)
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Old 05-23-22, 08:44 PM
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pennpaul
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Originally Posted by msu2001la View Post
Do your Sidi shoes have a tongue that has little slits in it like this?

This seemed crazy to me at first, and I was hesitant to cut slits into my fancy new Italian shoes, but after talking to many other Sidi owners this is typical and completely solved my problem of the top of the tongue rubbing against my foot.
Originally Posted by Pridedog View Post
After riding Sdis for years I just got a new pair of Megas. As usual it had an instructional paper in the box. I happened to actually look at it. It showed that the top of the tongue should be clipped with scissors along the serrated lines. I took my current Dominators and clipped every other line. What a difference it makes. Wish I had figured this out sooner. You might want to try clipping the tongue.
Mind officially blown! Yes, mine do have the slits. I'll try that out!
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Old 05-24-22, 08:06 PM
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My new Dominator 10's don't have those slits that can be cut, but have wedge shaped cutouts in the tongue which are probably intended to do the same thing. I've only ridden them 3-4 times and I can see that the tongue is breaking down a little/softening to achieve the same purpose I'd wager. If not, I might work it a little or maybe even extend the cut outs. The only reason I'm thinking about this at all is that my old Genius 5's were dead comfortable from the get-go. These just don't feel as supple overall and especially in the top of the tongue.



I now see my old Genius have those slits - I wasn't aware of them and never had to cut them!

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Old 05-24-22, 09:21 PM
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Had similar issue with the tongues on my S-Works 7 shoes leading to heavy bruising. Read tips on another site to take a hair dryer (which I did) or heat gun (don't have one) to reshape them. Seems to have done the trick of permanently bending the tongues so they don't dig into my ankles.
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Old 05-25-22, 07:59 AM
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Wow, now I'll have to go home and look at my Sidi Genius Megas.

Like the OP, I've occasionally had some issues with the top of the tongue, but (a) I could usually solve it by loosening the ratchet and repositioning the tongue; and (b) since it is "leather" (of some type? I think?) once I got going it would soften up/absorb moisture so it was only a problem for a few minutes. I could see this being a problem for others, though (drier climate/not heavy sweaters/different socks/different anatomy/more sensitive skin/etc.).

The snipping does look like it would solve the issue, now I have another reason to look forward to going home after work.
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