What shoes should you be wearing with flat pedals?

I see this question asked almost everyday on Mountain Bike forums. If you’re going to be riding with platform pedals, you owe it to yourself to pick up a set of shoes with a sticky rubber compound. Instead of the sole pattern hooking to the pins, the soft rubber compound absorbs the pins gluing the pedal to the foot. This practically eliminates any shifting when riding over chattery terrain. They may be a bit pricier than your average shoe, but definitely worth it in the long run.

The three brands and models I recommend looking into are as followed.

Five Ten, they are the gold standard for mountain biking shoes. They have a vast array of bike specific shoes, my personal favorite being the Karvers. They have a thick sole, lots of padding, and a lace cover which prevents water from splashing in.  However wearing these as street shoes will drastically decrease their life and some don’t like the aesthetics.

Teva Links offer a grippy sole but not quite as grippy as the Five Ten’s. These have more of a skate shoe profile, but are designed specifically for mountain biking. If need be, these shoes are better suited for everyday use.

Last but not least are the Vans Gravel. They use the same waffle pattern that Vans have become known for, except these use a sticky rubber compound. Some riders think that five tens are too grippy and opt to go with these instead.

About Author