Depending on your riding style, it will change the type of pedal that is best for you. Generally speaking there are four main categories of pedals. The table below will elaborate on each kind of pedal and intended functionality to allow you to make an informed decision when purchasing pedals.
- Can be attached to any bike
- Perfect for beginners because they allow you to quickly place your foot on the ground for balance
- Any type of footwear can be used on the pedal
- BMX riders pedal of choice, due to the nature of the style requiring the rider to often remove their foot to do tricks
- Best way of securing your feet to the bike
- By being clicked into the pedal it allows you to pull up as well as push down, meaning pedaling is more powerful and efficient
- Mountain bike click-in pedals come in two styles. The first style is similar to road bike pedals in that the pedal consists of the clip device only. The other style of mountain bike pedals come with a base around the clip, this means that these pedals can be used as both a platform pedal and click-in pedal, offering the convenience of platform pedals and the performance of click in pedals.
- Typically road pedals are small and require cycling shoes to clip into the pedal
- Click-in pedals can be intimidating to people who have never used them before. However, the advantages of using click in pedals make it worth while over coming your concerns. Once you have used click in pedals for a period of time clicking in and out of them becomes second nature.
- Highly recommended if you are riding a road, racing or regularly.
- Main advantage of using Toe-clip pedals is that they help you to locate your foot in to the correct position on the pedal, which is placing the ball of your foot over the centre of the pedal.
- Quickly becoming old fashion. Prior to click-in pedals, toe-clip pedals were the best way of securing your feet to the bike.
- Cheap way of securing your feet to the bike because toe-clips can be used with any shoe and can be attached to most platform pedals.
Why Pay More?
With a huge range of pedal manufacturers each one having their own pedal and cleat designs the choice can be overwhelming. The general guidelines above should help to narrow this down a bit, but usually the final decision comes down to your personal preference.
If performance is what you are after then there are four advantages to buying a more expensive pedal. Higher quality pedals are usually lighter, they have smoother action, clipping in and out of them tends to be a lot cleaner and better quality pedals are likely to feature more adjustment options.