Finding the right shoes means that not only finding the right fit for your foot, but finding the right fit with your pedals and cleats as well. Before you buy that pair of cycling shoes, make sure you follow these steps so that your shoes will work with your facility’s bikes and you get the most out of every ride.
Before you shop for cycling shoes, a few important things to note:
- Most indoor bikes, including all commercial Spinner bikes, are SPD®-compatible. So if you are wearing a shoe that is SPD® compatible, the cleats you attach to your shoes should work with your indoor bike.
- At first, the shoes will feel stiff because of the rigid sole. The shoes should be snug, but not overly tight. It’s important to have a snug fit because cycling shoes tend to stretch over time. The fasteners should not pinch your foot, and the inside should keep your heel comfortable against the hard sole.
- When you walk in the shoe, it should not slip or have any wiggle room. Try mimicking a pedal stroke to see if the shoe will pinch or slip. That way, you know that there won’t be any discomfort when you ride. The soles will feel stiff, but once the shoes are broken in after a few rides, they’ll feel as cozy as a warm pair of gloves.
You can find the right fit on the sizing chart below:
MTB “Mountain Bike” Shoes:
Example of a MTB shoe and its 2-hole design (outlined in yellow)MTB stands for “mountain biking”, so these shoes are as much at home on a mountain bike as they are on an indoor bike. They are also easy to walk around in before and after you ride. They are tough and durable enough to brave the outdoor elements, but also light and somewhat flexible for maximum comfort.
MTB shoes also have one very important feature; SPD® compatibility. So when you get SPD® cleats, they should fit to your shoes and clip-in to your Spinner® bike just fine. These shoes feature a 2-hole design with 4 screw holes that allows for a secure but flexible feel, as well as providing easy clip-in and out for riders. These four screw holes can also slide forward and backward so that the cleat can be positioned exactly under the balls of your feet, ensuring the most powerful and comfortable pedal stroke possible.
MTB shoes also have another important feature called recessed cleats. Because the cleat design is small, the rugged outsole of these shoes actually wraps around the cleat and keeps the sole of the shoe flat. This makes walking in your cycling shoe easier, and it gives you more traction, so you won’t slip on slick floors in your studio. And because the cleat is protected by the rubber outsole, you won’t damage the cleat or the floor every time you take a step. For many indoor riders, this is an important feature, so double check that the shoes you want have a recessed cleat area before buying them.
MTB Shoes Recommended for Women
Women’s Giro® Manta MTB Shoes, Women’s Giro® Relia MTB Shoes, Women’s Giro® SICA MTB Shoes
MTB Shoes Recommended for Men
Men’s Giro® Privateer MTB Shoes, Men’s Giro® Privateer HV MTB Shoes, Men’s Giro® Carbide MTB Shoes
Example of a road shoe and its 3-hole design (outlined in red).
Road shoes are specifically designed for outdoor road cyclists. They are even lighter than MTB shoes, feature a very rigid sole, and are designed to endure the longest rides.
LOOK® Delta Cleats
Unlike MTB shoes, however, they have a 3-hole design that is arranged in a triangle. This 3-hole design is universal for most road cleats (like LOOK® Delta cleats) and offers even more stability than the 2-hole arrangement of an SPD®-compatible shoe.Unlike MTB shoes, though, road shoes do not have recessed cleats. That means that the outsole does not wrap around the cleat, so the cleat will be sticking out of the bottom of your shoe. This makes standing in and walking around in these shoes a little tricky, and you may damage the cleat or the floor of your gym or home if you step on them too frequently. That’s why it is highly recommended that you use MTB shoes for indoor cycling. But if you want to use a superlight, stiff, high-performance shoe in your Spinning classes, you can adapt road shoes to any cleat system with the right adapter.
Road Shoes Recommended for Women:
Women’s SIDI® Genius Fit Road Shoes & Women’s SIDI® Tarus Road Shoes
Road Shoes Recommended for Men:
Men’s SIDI® Genius 5 Road Shoes & Men’s SIDI® Tarus Road Shoes
Road and MTB Shoes
Example of a Road and MTB shoe with a universal mount (outlined in yellow and red) Lightweight with very stiff soles for maximum efficiency, Road and MTB shoes combine the 2- and 3-hole design, making them compatible with nearly all cleats. They are sometimes described as a “universal mount”, so if you find yourself wanting to switch the cleats between riding your road bike, mountain bike, or Spinner® bike, these are the shoes for you!