SPD or Flats ?

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  • SPD or Flats ?
  • DrP

    Flat on the left foot. SPD on the right. If it’s after 1600hrs I swap ’em round….



    Of those people who mention knee pain/aches/problems with SPDs, how many of you have been using specialized BG shoes?

    (2nd and 3rd pics being specialized)

    Premier Icon stevomcd

    Rode SPD’s (Times actually) for years, then swapped to flats when going through the SMBLA scheme because of all the wheelies/manuals/bunny-hops/etc involved. Definitely better to learn these on flats (for self-preservation as much as technique!). Really love the flats now. Was a great feeling when you finally crack it and can launch off drops with the bike just sticking to you as if you still had the SPuDs on.

    I rode clipped-in for years and would always have agreed with previous posts about actually feeling more confident on techy stuff ‘cos your feet can’t come off the pedals, but in reality it’s not an issue and the flats do help when riding stuff with big consequences if it goes wrong. Nice to be able to attack stuff knowing you can bail if need be. And to all those about to say they can get their foot out of their Spuds just as quick – you can’t. No way. I could get a foot down as quick as anyone and never saw it as a problem, but it just isn’t the same as having your feet free.


    i’ve trashed the axle on a pair of flatboys


    flatboy – sorry, it’s true 🙁

    I actually feel less secure on techy and jumpy bits when in spd’s, I think because of the float. I don’t feel very connected at all when standing on the pedals. Landing skewwiff on spd’s could also feasibly result in twising out of them, not an issue on flats.

    I currently use both but more and more I am going for flats with grippy shimano am40 shoes.


    “Landing skewwiff on spd’s could also feasibly result in twising out of them”

    Perhaps, but at that extreme it might be ending up in a crash landing due to twisting at the bars too?
    Mostly your heels will dip as you land though, as with flats

    Premier Icon gamo

    Atacs most of the time, put flats on if going jumping(not that often these days)
    or when riding raised woodwork type stuff!


    I’ve run flats for a good few years now. I use to run spds but I’d either rip the cleat out of the shoe, or knacker the springs in the pedals. I’m running Burgtec Penthouse pedals which are very pricey and I had to wait 10 months to get them. They’re a bit on the heavy side, but they take the knocks. I have’nt changed the bearings yet and only changed the bushes because one of them was a bit tight. I need to get some new shoes as mine are getting a bit worn out. I use 5:10 shoes. The current ones (07 Sam Hill ones), are’nt as grippy as my original Mk1’s. You get plenty of pin placement options. I think the pins could be a bit smaller, but other than that they’re pretty good. It helps to take them apart from time to time to keep em running sweet.

    Premier Icon zbonty

    Have always run flats here, though thought of trying spuds recently as i’m generally on xc type duties.

    Then i saw some shocking ‘spud-yanking’ type bunny hop attempts recently and i’m sticking to my Straitlines thank you very much.

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