By Rick Schultz
It’s been an interesting year, with lots of people returning to the workplace after a long time at home. Cyclists are also returning to cycling with new bikes and new pains at a greater frequency. As an IBFI level 4 fitter and instructor, I help clients eliminate most of these pains by using the correct equipment for that specific person.
Three main items that cause the majority of the chronic pain cyclists experience are stems that are too long, saddles that are too narrow, and crank arms that are too long. These are easy fixes by evaluating cyclists and installing the right components.
But what about other common chronic issues that still linger even after fixing the above?
One product that has gone under the radar for too long is a mid-foot-cleat placement adapter that moves the cleat rearwards so that cyclists with chronic lower leg / calf /Achilles / foot pain can get some relief.
This product is from a company called PatroCleats and their products include cleat adapters for common pedals such as SPD-SL, LOOK, Garmin, Time, SPD, and Speed Play/Wahoo. https://mid-foot-cycling.com/collections/all
Endorsed by expert Australian fitters Neill Stanbury, Steve Hogg, USA fitters Bike Fitness Coaching, and John Higgins, PatroCleats’ biggest seller is the ERGO3 for most 3-bolt shoes. Cleats can be moved back 0mm-24mm (Note: depending on the shoes – I was able to push mine back 32mm from full forward to full rearward), and I recommend starting with about 12mm of rear placement. The ERGO3 is placed in its furthest rearward position, and the cleats all the way forward. Get used to that first, then you can experiment.
I have been testing and using PatroCleats ERGO3s for the past 9-months and I must confess, I can’t go back to the standard ‘cleat under the metatarsals’ location as that now feels like I am pedaling on my toes. I got used to them right away and any and all leg pain is now gone.
I offer stems, saddles, and cranks, and have now added these cleat adapters to my bike fitting toolbox.
For my initial test review and long-term testing, please see the following articles on Road Bike Rider.
- Initial Review – https://www.roadbikerider.com/mid-foot-cycling-patrocleats-review/
- Long Term – https://www.roadbikerider.com/patrocleats-long-term-test/
Coach Rick Schultz is an avid cyclist who trains, races and coaches in Southern California. Rick is an engineer by trade, and in addition to being a coach, he’s a bike fitter and prolific product reviewer. He’s the author of Stretching & Core Strengthening for the Cyclist in the RBR eBookstore. Check his product reviews website, www.biketestreviews.com, and his coaching site, www.bikefitnesscoaching.com. Click to read Rick’s full bio.