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Foot position throughout pedal stroke.(6 posts)

Foot position throughout pedal stroke.skinny legs
Mar 26, 2003 2:31 PM
I set my bike position with the standard kops. The thing I notice is that when I pedal, my heel is higher than my toes. Should I try keeping my feet more level or does it not make any difference at all?
Do what comes naturally. nmeschelon
Mar 26, 2003 3:58 PM
re: Foot position throughout pedal stroke.DINOSAUR
Mar 26, 2003 8:33 PM
I pedal flat footed, but it just comes natural to me. I experimented recently with my pedal stroke and my knees started to bother me. Just do what comes naturally and don't worry about it. Just don't push too high a gear and concentrate on spinning with smooth tapes of the pro's and notice all the different positons, set-ups and pedal strokes...
good article this week at nmJS Haiku Shop
Mar 27, 2003 6:58 AM
here's the piece from
Mar 27, 2003 12:43 PM
Pedal like a pro!

Conventional wisdom says that a smooth pedal stroke
makes you faster.

But we've seen studies arguing that it's the other way
around: Fitness contributes to better pedaling technique.

The fitter and stronger you become, the easier it is to
pedal smoothly at a given intensity.

The bottom line, though, is that a smooth and supple
stroke increases your efficiency -- more so the longer
the ride. It's the mark of an accomplished roadie, too.
The French even have a word for it, souplesse.

Here's one good drill to help you pedal better at any
intensity level:

Mentally divide your stroke into three parts:
---power the pedal down

---pull through at the bottom like you're scraping mud
off the sole of your shoe

---pull your knee forward over the top like you're aiming
it at the handlebar

To work on each part, concentrate on one of them
every five pedal strokes.

For example, to improve your downstroke, give the
pedal a little kick as the crankarm goes forward from
vertical to horizontal. Do this with the right leg, pedal
normally five stokes, then do it with the left leg.

After couple of minutes, add similar emphasis to
scraping the pedal through the bottom. Finally,
accentuate pulling over the top.

Do this drill up a steady mild grade, on the flat using
a big gear, or against the wind (another benefit of
headwinds). The idea is to have enough resistance
to slow your pedaling so you can isolate the three
stroke phases.

Make this drill part of every ride. Before long, you'll
notice a difference in the smoothness and power of
your whole stroke at normal cadences.
re: Foot position throughout pedal stroke.Fredrico
Mar 27, 2003 10:54 AM
Don't mean to suggest there is a problem, but your toes may be reaching for the pedals. If so, your saddle may be too high. If you are starting out, establishing optimum positioning, establishing your pedal stroke, this is the first question to get out of the way. You should be able to spin an easy gear quite fast without rocking your hips. Try it the next time you ride. The faster you pedal, the more obvious positioning problems become.

Beyond that, it is natural for some riders to pedal with the ball of the foot lower than the heel, and for others, flatter footed. Jacques Anquetil and Fausto Coppi were said to have pedaled with toes pointed down. Eddy Merckx pedaled with his heels, flat footed. They were all champions.