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Are flat pedals a liability?

Discussion in 'Downhill & Freeride' started by daisycutter, Oct 2, 2012.

  1. daisycutter

    daisycutter Turbo Monkey

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    #1 -   Oct 2, 2012

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  2. norbar

    norbar Turbo Monkey

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    No it doesn't The main point is people win on clips so clips are better but in the last few years people = Gwin so the point is beyond stupid. Clips help you in some riding styles. If you ride with your feet tilted forward more often than yeah but if you ride like Brendog so way in the back I think it makes a smaller difference. It's also only in the rough.

    RC is stupid for calling people theorists about flat pedals pedaling as well when he gives no reasonable argument himself. Especially when they made some good arguments themselves. Though RC is just stupid.
     
    #2 -   Oct 2, 2012
  3. yd35

    yd35 Monkey

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    If someone dominates the world cup circuit next year on toe clips, we will discussing how flats and clips are obsolete.
     
    #3 -   Oct 2, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2012
  4. Deano

    Deano Monkey

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    and in the heyday of hill a few years ago, it was the opposite argument..

    In the end, whatever suits YOU right will make you faster.

    personally i tried both, im on flats now, simply cos it feels better for me.

    On WC level, its the margins that make things count, what about the other variables in the game ?

    Suspension setups, what rubber they use, tire pressure.. there are too many other factors in play for anyone to make the call that clips simply make you faster. or flats.
     
    #4 -   Oct 2, 2012
  5. OGRipper

    OGRipper Turbo Monkey

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    It's an endless debate, mainly because some people are faster than others regardless of pedal style. But this is an interesting take in that it's the first time I've seen someone try to draw the connection between modern geometry and pedal type. It's something to think about but at the top level, my sense is that pedaling efficiency is a bigger issue.

    I recently switched to clips for DH and am pretty stoked on the increased security at speed, especially in the rough stuff.
     
    #5 -   Oct 2, 2012
  6. Downhillbiker23

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    Its all opinion
     
    #6 -   Oct 2, 2012
  7. boogenman

    boogenman Turbo Monkey

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    winner
     
    #7 -   Oct 2, 2012
  8. ebarker9

    ebarker9 Monkey

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    He lost me at "most riders still use a variation of the rearward position that Sam Hill popularized back when he was spanking everyone". Fairclough, sure, but to me Sam Hill popularized a more upright, forward, moto-like riding position.
     
    #8 -   Oct 2, 2012
  9. NoUseForAName

    NoUseForAName Monkey

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    World Cup does not mean you and me; even though we're all WC level internet posters, i doubt many of us have much insight into this.
     
    #9 -   Oct 2, 2012
  10. bizutch

    bizutch Delicate CUSTOM flower

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    It's all very valid and anybody who has ridden clipped in knows it.

    seb to the white courtesy phone. rootsandrain in depth analysis required...to the sebmobile!!!
     
  11. mattmatt86

    mattmatt86 Turbo Monkey

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    I think there's some validity to the article, but a lot of people dislike RC so they'll immediately condemn anything he says. It does seem that in the last few years there are quite a few big name riders that went from flats to clips and found success, Gwin and Smith.(correlation or causation? Who knows) I can't think of anyone that has gone from clips to flat, with the exception of Ratboy who can't seem to make up his mind even though he's thrown away a couple good results because of pedal related incidents.
     
    #11 -   Oct 2, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2012
  12. IH8Rice

    IH8Rice I'm Mr. Negative! I Fail!

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    Danny Hart introduces the new-school riding technique? lol
     
  13. bdamschen

    bdamschen Turbo Monkey

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    This just seems like another article written by someone who doesn't know and is trying to guess why fast people go fast.

    Barrel wins worlds- OMG it's low bottom bracket and careful planning and elliptic chainringz!@

    Sam wins- it's the flat pedals and crazy riding style and dw suspension!@

    Gwin wins- it's teh jesus, juicing vegetables, clips and being nice!

    At the end of the day only the riders and the people who help them train know.
     
  14. mattmatt86

    mattmatt86 Turbo Monkey

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    What was Hart? Smoking Marlboros and having a crustache?
     
  15. bdamschen

    bdamschen Turbo Monkey

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    I thought he was huge balls and whips?
     
  16. jonKranked

    jonKranked Press Button, Receive Stupid

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    wow. and its not even the off-season yet.
     
  17. bullcrew

    bullcrew Turbo Monkey

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    Personal preference and both have pros and cons. I think at wc level and the courses its easier to manipulate the bike in the long air sections with clips or bring the bikes back end around a little more.
    I'll stick with flats and 5:10
     
  18. rosenamedpoop

    rosenamedpoop Turbo Monkey

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    I'm faster on clips when the trail is wide/fast, faster on flats when turns are tight & in quick succession.

    $.02
     
  19. trib

    trib not worthy of a Rux.

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    The obvious answer is no pedals, cranks, chainguide or mech and just scoot down the trail.

    Also an excellent way to trim weight from your rig.
     
  20. demo 9

    demo 9 Turbo Monkey

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    too chicken **** for clips
     
  21. Tomasz

    Tomasz Monkey

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    At the WC level, I think that it's clear clips are superior - all else equal.

    That said, I am under the impression that theories regarding increased pedaling efficiency with clips have been debunked. Which is to say that flats and clips are equals in pedaling efficiency.

    Clips should offer improved control and stability on the bike for demanding riders. You won't ever catch me using them for DH, but their advantages for racing seem obvious, and their downsides are not.
     
    #21 -   Oct 2, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2012
  22. ZoRo

    ZoRo Turbo Monkey

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    Most people on RM are RC bashers and BL bashers for some old and obscure reasons. I thought it was a well written and thoughtful article.
     
    #22 -   Oct 2, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2012
  23. Mr Horse

    Mr Horse Chimp

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    Makes me laugh. Ha ha.

    It kind of reminds me of reading articles about why the Romans were able to subjusgate the Germanic tribes......ready for this? Stirrups. It also played a role in the Crusades. The early Crusaders weren't able to couch their lance in charges against the Sarecens because riding without made it impracticle. They figured it out eventually.

    Pretty interesting stuff. So simple yet having such an impact on the way people do business.

    I don't think it's so unreasonable that riders on the competitve edge have found an advantage in clipping in......
     
  24. cecil

    cecil Turbo Monkey

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    Well we all know richie Cunningham wanted to be a journalist when he was hanging out with Ralph and potsie at Arnold's

    Fwiw if he said fonzie told him clips were faster then I would believe him
     
  25. Orangesicle

    Orangesicle Chimp

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    You just gotta ride both and find what each teaches you.
    All the aforementioned pros ride flats when they're 'effin around.
    And for races they switch back and forth, note Ratboy this year.
    I think what RC was pushing was development of body position and the geometry of the modern dh bike.
    That the slacker head angles will REQUIRE the use of clips to be competitive in WC DH.
    And that is pure BS.
    There is no standard "rider style" per se, which he mentions. But there is also no standard to WC DH geometry among bike companies.
    Just look at the numbers on DeVinci vs. SC V10 vs. Trek vs. Specialized vs. Giant vs. GT.
    There's correlations but no standard.
    That's interesting to me.
    I won't win a WC DH race in my life, but I might be faster with clips.

    And RC is a douche.
     
  26. sbabuser

    sbabuser Turbo Monkey

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    So THAT'S why I keep hearing about all those roadies switching to flats recently.
     
  27. kidwoo

    kidwoo Celebrating No-Pants Day

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  28. kidwoo

    kidwoo Celebrating No-Pants Day

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    I spent about 5 minutes reconciling that in my own head.

    RC is a moron.

    But he makes some good points in this one.



    That said, if brian lopes writes an insightful treatise on gender rolls in evolving industrialized third world countries, I'm shooting myself in the head.
     
  29. norbar

    norbar Turbo Monkey

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    I've been riding clips for the last 16 years (last 3 years flats on my dh bike but am is still clipped in). The only valid point is certain body position AND RIDING STYLE on the bike works better with flats because some riders are more comfortable moving around. Hell I noticed going too wide in the bar department stretched me too far in the front and I ride with my feet tilted down more so my feet come of the pedals more and I'm less mobile but the notion that moving on the bike and having an active body position is bad is simply stupid and it shows RC knows as much about DH as he knows about "Black Diamond".
     
  30. - seb

    - seb Turbo Monkey

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    Hah, it has occured to me before. I'm not that observant though, if I looked at the top 50 riders in the world I could only be certain about who rides clips or flats on about 10% of them!

    My gut feeling is that clips are "better", but that personally I'm too old a dog now to have a poor season while I learn the transition. I'm faster than I ever have been at the moment, and I'm going to stick to my flats!
     
  31. slyfink

    slyfink Turbo Monkey

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    Honest question: what would the "pros" be of riding flats at the WC level? Other than comfort and personal preference maybe?

    woo, why would I want to know about the differences in fat distribution of men and women in evolving industrialized countries? or do you mean bread rolls?! even then I fail to understand why I'd want to know about gender distribution of small loaves of bread?!?!!?

    :D
     
    #31 -   Oct 3, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2012
  32. boogenman

    boogenman Turbo Monkey

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    Thank you Mr. Horse, now this all makes sense.
     
  33. norbar

    norbar Turbo Monkey

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    Taking riskier lines and getting away with it. Sam stopped winning and people forgot this argument?


    Because roadies are teh scientiztz. They know all and unless they use it it's wrong. It's a new idea that flats are as good at pedaling and even road trainers speak about it.
     
  34. kidwoo

    kidwoo Celebrating No-Pants Day

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    Hey norbar: You don't notice that with a slacker and lower bike, better suspension, wider bars etc that you're riding your bike a lot more centered? I defintely move around a whole lot less on a good dh bike because you DON'T HAVE TO to compensate for a steeper higher bike that wants to pitch you.
     
  35. OGRipper

    OGRipper Turbo Monkey

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    NORCAL is the hizzle
    You honestly think a World Cup level pro is going to skip a particular section because he/she is riding clips instead of flats? I disagree. I mean, come on, doesn't Gee ride clips at Rampage?

    Can anyone point to the "scientific" evidence that clips are not more efficient than flats? Has the myth been busted in some valid way?
     
  36. slyfink

    slyfink Turbo Monkey

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    How do flat pedals allow you to take riskier lines? In my mind, not having to worry about my feet coming off the pedals allows me to take riskier lines, whereas with a flat pedal you have to accomodate for that extra factor. These guys are going mach-looney into "riskier lines" and I wouldn't think the ability to quickly take your foot off the pedals (and really... is it that much quicker?) isn't really going to help them...

    edited to add: I think Woo and OG covered my point better than I did, but they posted while I was typing....
     
    #36 -   Oct 3, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2012
  37. CrabJoe StretchPants

    CrabJoe StretchPants Reincarnated Crab Walking Head Spinning Bruce Dick

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    Saw who it was written by, didn't read it.
     
  38. norbar

    norbar Turbo Monkey

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    Dab a foot instead of dabbing the ground with your face? You mistake risky line with rough line. Yes you can go over the more rough part of the track easier with clipless but the real creative lines are in turns and given it's there where you are usually at a slower speed the chance to get into something hairy is bigger since no momentum will help you. You won't dab your foot in a full speed rockgarden but with a little extra effort you can easily hang to your bike.

    I agree with the idea that clips benefit you for fast and rough parts of the track but for tight, techy, slower speed flats might lower the chances of crashing and could also inspire confidence in taking stupid lines (and aren't modern bikes all about inspiring confidence, than anything else?)
     
  39. Sandwich

    Sandwich Pig my fish!
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    RC is the worst thing to happen to pinkbike, and that's coming from somebody who likes 650b and would buy another 29er hardtail in a heartbeat.

    He takes the mindset of MBA and mixes it with a tabloid-esque ****-starter journalism. If I wanted to read about how the new Niner/Santa Cruz 29" long travel bike rides in the south californian desert.....no, wait, I don't want to read about that.

    Give me more Mike Levy and insane race coverage please. Leave out the "This'll piss off have the visitors to this site" bits. I love that they're doing more XC stuff, but every time I click on an article that I think doesn't belong on pinkbike, RC wrote it.
     
  40. Lelandjt

    Lelandjt Turbo Monkey

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    Even at regional and national levels the vast majority of pros are clipped in. There will always be a few who prefer flats bit it's obvious that clips are faster for most pros.