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Mountain Bike Shoes

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Buying a mountain bike specific set of shoes can be a great choice to get the most out of your riding. The mud, dirt and rocks that are found on MTB trails can be very tough on shoes that are not made for the conditions. There are several variations of mountain bike shoes that each have different features and are intended for different mountain bike disciplines. Some models are ‘Clip-In’ (aka Clipless) which mean they attach to the pedal, while others are ‘Platform’ which are like a normal shoe. Typical closure systems include velcro, buckle, laces and BOA, which is a reel cable system.

Types of Mountain Bike Shoes

Cross Country

Cross country shoes are designed to be extremely lightweight and provide excellent power transfer to help you get up climbs as fast as possible.

  • Lightweight construction
  • Grip lugs on the base of the shoe to aid walking in loose terrain
  • Super stiff base
  • Designed for clipless-type pedals. Often known as 'SPD compatible'.

Trail

Fast becoming the most popular choice, trail shoes combine the efficiency of cross country shoes with the increased protecton and off-bike traction as gravity shoes.

  • Mid-weight construction
  • Rubber Grip sole to aid walking
  • Stiff base
  • More casual aesthetic compared to cross country shoes
  • Designed for clipless-type pedals. Often known as 'SPD compatible'.

Gravity

Gravity shoes are best for downhill and enduro riding and feature sturdy construction with added protection against impacts.

  • Sturdy build with padding and extra protection, particularly around the toe
  • Can have a platform or clipless pedal base
  • Flat and flexible base to help feel the pedal.
  • Grippy outer sole if platform type.

Touring

Touring shoes are a great mix with sturdy construction but still lightweight so you can enjoy a wide range of trails and roads. Some models look like ordinary shoes, which can be great if your riding to the shops.

  • Medium build for light-weight but still protected
  • Can look like an ordinary shoe
  • Great value option