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Bike maintenance guide: pedals

PedalsChainWheelsGears and brakesSaddleCleaning up

There are three basic types of pedals: those with clips and straps, clipless pedals that a cleat on the shoe clicks onto and pedals with neither.

Some people are put off using pedals with toe clips because they look unsafe.

They do take a while to get used to but it's worth sticking with.

The toe clips prevent your foot from slipping off the pedal which can cause a sudden swerve or loss of control.

Although make sure not to pull the toe straps too tight so you can pull your foot out if you do fall off!

When you buy a set of toe clips, make sure you get the right size for both your foot and the pedal.

As for the pedal, go for ones with proper toe clip mounting holes.

The first clipless pedals were like the bindings used on skis.

A cleat on the bottom of the shoe clicks into the pedal and holds it firmly.

When you want to get off your bike you just twist your foot a little and it's free.

When it comes to buying clipless pedals and the shoes that go with them, it's best to get some expert advice.

They come in a huge variety of designs.

Ask someone in a bike shop to help you choose the best combination of shoes and pedals that will suit you.

Ask them about the amount of "float" too, which allows your foot to move a little and so takes the pressure off your knees.

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