The Best Everyday Pedals

I believe there is no such thing as bad shoes for everyday cycling, only bad pedals.  :-)  Although I rarely wear high heels (preferring not to feel hobbled), I do not want my bike to prevent me from pulling them out on those days when I feel inspired.

My friend Chika recently wore these fabulous high-heeled sandals while riding her new Linus Dutchie.  Although she looked kick-ass, she admitted that the heels were very difficult to bike in, as her foot kept sliding off the pedal.

Chika’s heels

While some may say, “Um, don’t bike in heels,” that’s not how we roll around here.  Instead, I commiserated – been there, experienced that – and encouraged her to consider replacing the Linus’s stock pedals with inexpensive Dimension rubber pedals. Chicagoans: you can buy them locally at J.C. Lind Bikes.

Dimension rubber pedals

I discovered these particular Dimension pedals while borrowing a De Fietsfabriek bike for a group ride.  During that ride, my normally difficult, high pumps stayed glued to the pedals as if by magic.

Prada pumps and Dimension pedals

I soon bought the same pedals for my Oma and they have been going strong for over two years.  The rubber has not lost its grippiness over time and the heavy use has not worn them down.

As I said before, the ability to bike in any shoe is all about the pedals.  Well, okay, maybe these extreme(ly badass) heels of Trisha’s would be difficult even with these pedals.  But maybe not!

What kind of pedals do you have on your bike?  Do your shoe soles ever slip?  Do you have your own recommendation for “best everyday pedals?”

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32 thoughts on “The Best Everyday Pedals

  1. Ash L says:

    Some heels are the problem though, for sure. When I used to bike in high polish bottomed heels I’d stick a couple of strips of masking tape to the bottoms of them to help with grip. Great for walking too.

    • Dottie says:

      Yeah, some soles are better than others. Rubber soles on rubber pedals is the best combo, but slippery leather soles work well on rubber pedals, too.

    • Dottie says:

      Yeah, some soles are better than others. Rubber soles on rubber pedals is the best combo, but slippery leather soles work well on rubber pedals, too.

  2. parker says:

    Warning: this is from a guy… By far the best platform pedals I’ve used are from the German maker Ergon. I don’t think they’ll get an award for fashion, but they’re non-slip, keep your foot in place, are curved to fit your foot, are slightly canted inward for best knee angle, and are very well made, with sealed bearings. BTW: I also use Ergon grips, which let you rest your hands comfortably (if you prefer a “forward” riding position) http://www.ergon-bike.com/us/en/home, and available from various retailers, including on-line. All the best.

    • LGRAB says:

      I like a pedal that comes in small or large sizes! Will look into this one.
      ~T

    • LGRAB says:

      I like a pedal that comes in small or large sizes! Will look into this one.
      ~T

    • Meghan Naxer says:

      I second Ergon pedals and grips!!! I have been successful in biking with these pedals in anything, including 2-inch heels on my way to a performance. The non-slip is 100% amazing, even in the wet winters here in Eugene, OR. I highly recommend these pedals as the best platforms around!

    • Dottie says:

      Those look excellent! Thanks for sharing. The only thing is that they cost $80 and the ones I have cost $13. I’m sure the Ergon would be very nice to have, but Dimension is a great economical option.

    • Michael says:

      Also a guy here, and I can vouch for the comfort of the Ergon pedals. One thing though, I’m not sure how the contour of the pedals work with the flat front of a high-heeled shoe. I can only imagine (again, no experience here) that the flat surface of the Dimension pedals would work better. They’re also heavier than they look, so don’t count on weight savings.

      There are, however, no better pedals for Vibram Fivefingers than the Ergons!

  3. I’ve never even thought of this! I’ve actually broken heels on boots by them slipping. Maybe I should stop by JC Lind..

  4. Lauren says:

    I wish I could wear heels on my bike but I tend to favor giant platforms – like the kind that have an extra 2″+ on the sole. They are certainly bikeable – they are wedges, after all – but the added height means I would need to raise my saddle, and it is pretty difficult to adjust so I’d rather not touch it for fear of never getting it back to normal. Oh well!

    • Dottie says:

      Yes, that is a pain! I’ve had that problem with some boots I own. I wish there were an easy way to adjust the seat to accommodate different shoes.

  5. Thanks so much for the pedal recommendation. The slippery stock pedals on the C8 have caused me a lot of grief in heels. I’m going to give these a try.

  6. ladyfleur says:

    My best pedals for heels are the ones on my Viva Juliett, which are similar to the Dimensions. The ones on my Public M8 which are similar to the Linus ones are just ok. The larger platform of softer composite rubber is infinitely better that a little rubber strips on metal. Here’s a photo: http://ladyfleur.wordpress.com/2012/07/16/bike-commute-diaries-why-i-ride-in-heels/

    • Dottie says:

      Fab shoes! The pedals are nice, too. :)

      I agree that pedals with wimpy little rubber strips are not up to the task. Thick, soft rubber is where it’s at.

  7. Beth says:

    I can’t believe no one else has said this, so I will: I still hadn’t recovered from drooling over Chika’s sandals when I saw the awesome Prada pumps (and had to cover mouth to keep from shouting “WANTWANTWANT!”) You both have excellent taste in footwear — those are some gorgeous shoes!

    • Dottie says:

      Ha! I love Chika’s sandals, too. Fabric and flowers and cork, oh my. I am in lurve with my one and only pair of Prada shoes, which I bought from an outlet many years ago. They are hard to walk in, but I take them out of the closet every now and then to pet and admire. :)

    • Heather says:

      I came here to comment on the exact same thing. The sandals are beautiful and those pumps…OMG, SWOON.

  8. For those of us with vintage bikes, I’ve found the rubber platforms on most vintage 3-speeds’ pedals work with my fancy shoes too – as long as the rubber hasn’t hardened too much (ie, the prior owner stored it inside).

  9. Bike Lane Living says:

    I avoid high heels in general since I’m on my feet all day, but riding my bike does impact my shoe choice. I don’t really like riding with open-toed shoes. But I’m sure I could if I had too.

  10. Bike Lane Living says:

    I avoid high heels in general since I’m on my feet all day, but riding my bike does impact my shoe choice. I don’t really like riding with open-toed shoes. But I’m sure I could if I had too.

  11. Gordon Inkeles says:

    I switched to Ergon pedals and never looked back. They are grippy, ergonomic (shaped to the ball of your foot) and wonderfully easy to use.

    http://bikesocial.blogspot.com/2012/02/ergon-ergonomic-pedal.html

  12. dkretroride says:

    Dottie, thank you! I received my Dimension pedals today in the mail from your Amazon link and I love them! Went right away to my LBS and had them put on. Rode around the block in flats and had zero slippage. Many thanks!

  13. Scott Sanderson says:

    Hey, I need new pedals for my Velorbis, I’ll give these a try!

  14. Scott Sanderson says:

    Hey, I need new pedals for my Velorbis, I’ll give these a try!

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