Connect with us

CONTACT US (editorial board)

365mountain bikes


Which FLAT pedal for MTB to choose? Here are some tips

Not all Flat pedals are the same: here's what you need to pay attention to when buying the ultimate Flat pedal.


Are you interested in a new flat pedal but not sure what to look for in terms of features? No, I'm not talking about color. Here's some advice.

What makes a good Flat pedal? Not everyone thinks the same but there are characteristics that cannot be ignored. Some want great grip, others prefer a little less grip so that the foot can still be positioned while riding.

Sam hill
Sam Hill, the KING of FLAT pedals, the one who gasses all Flat owners to the detriment of SPDs

An advanced and technical rider, as a rule, wants a pedal with maximum grip and this is what I also recommend if you are approaching a flat pedal. From my experience, I have seen that with a combination of a technical shoe and an aggressive flat, it is difficult to lose your foot, which instead happens with undesigned pedals. Then the blow on the shins, if you use the flat in a certain way, sooner or later it will get there, the important thing is to suffer it with honor. If you ride flats and have never taken a fair hit on the shins, you're not a real biker.

The only reason why it is preferable to use less aggressive pins is that they ruin the soles of the shoes in less time, so on purely urban bikes it is preferable to use less aggressive flats. Unless you want to bunny hop on the sidewalk in front of the business.

flat look trail roc + pedals (2)
LOOK Trail Roc +


Buy technical shoes! Ok, there are fashionable shoes with flat soles but in a MTB activity you need to be protected and it's not nice to hit a stone with your toe while wearing a fashionable shoe. Technical shoes have a flat sole made of rubbery material, with a reinforced toe. Don't use trekking shoes: having a knobby sole, the pins risk not sticking well (think of a pin that doesn't penetrate the shoe because it finds the groove of the knobs). Better, in case of a mistake, to use tennis shoes but, as previously mentioned, they do not have any type of reinforcement, especially in the front area.

Etnies Crank
Etnies Crank

I have had good experiences with Five Ten and Fizik shoes. Both have super grippy and firm enough soles. Crankbrothers has also arrived in the Flat market with interesting products.


The size of the pedal must be adapted according to your foot size. A girl with a 37 foot certainly needs less platform than a boy with a 46. However, when in doubt, it is better to use more: taking a small pedal is one of the worst things you can do. Crankbrothers, for example, produces. Of course, if you have a shoe size 39, you don't have to have the largest platform under your feet. Up to 40 feet I recommend pedals around 100/110mm in diameter, while from 42 onwards there are no problems fitting on the wider models.

If you get small pedals for your foot, there are multiple problems:

  • Shoe rubbing on the crank
  • In some frames, shoe that touches the rear stay
  • If one of these 2 events occurs, you will tend to drive with your foot slightly outside

If you want to test the diameter of the pedal, take the shoes you use and measure them at the widest point: now see if the pedal corresponds to, or is smaller than, this measurement (it ABSOLUTELY must not be larger).

crankbrothers stamp 1 gen 2


Pedals can be convex or concave. Concave platform pedals are slightly recessed in the center, so you put more pressure on the pins resulting in more grip. On the contrary, pedals that have a convex shape are not optimal because you risk not having full grip on the sides as the shoe is slightly raised and not under full pressure.

Another note: a pedal with a wide space in the center is better than many supports or aesthetic "doodles". This is due to the dirt and the mud: a pedal that "doesn't breathe", cannot expel the mud correctly and we will find a lump between the shoes and the pedal which will not give us the necessary grip.


Trivial concept: long pins lead to a lot of grip while short pins a little less. But it must be said that long pins lead to deep cuts in the tibia while short ones save us a little. If we are just starting out and are afraid, the slightly shorter pin fits, but with a long pin the risk of losing the pedal is very low so one shot once for every death of the pope with long pins is better than multiple shots with longer pins short.

Small tip: in the case of convex pedals, or with a shape that is too flat for our tastes, we can use shorter pins in the center in order to create a concavity thanks to the use of pins of different sizes.


This article should have opened your eyes to models that may or may not work. There are many flat pedals on the market but I recommend: don't get pedals that are too small, choose a concave shape and make sure the pedal has space to expel the mud. With these 3 tips you can be on the safe side, as long as you combine everything with technical shoes.

Written by

[email protected] I am a fan of everything that has 2 wheels: at a young age I practiced road and track cycling (Italian Allievi champion). At the age of 18 I passed into the cross country competing at national/international level as an Under23. Past Elite, I made the choice to take things more lightly from a training point of view, and my love for gravity disciplines was born, training me as an FCI MTB instructor and guide. Now I have made passion my profession by managing 2 MTB centers on the island of Elba (Bike Center Elba and Elba MTB), creating the FANTAmtb and telling in an ironic but professional way everything that revolves around MTB thanks to 365mountainbike and 365TV (YouTube'PULITI dentro BIKER fuori').


Era-V2 Era-V2

EXT Era v2.1: Testing the new air fork from the Italian brand


Damil FLOW MK4 29″ (DM-30A) Wheels (3) Damil FLOW MK4 29″ (DM-30A) Wheels (3)

Damil FLOW MK4 29″ (DM-30A) Wheel Test: Top for Enduro


HYDRA_Hub_in_hand-purple_CAD_POE1 HYDRA_Hub_in_hand-purple_CAD_POE1

MTB Hub – Engagement Points: Better Many or Few?



365mountainbike is a newspaper registered at the civil and criminal court of Verona on 10/01/2012
Copyright © 2019 | 365 sport srl (04835100233)
via Brenta, 7 - 37057 San Giovanni Lupatoto (VR)

© 365 sport srl All rights reserved. The articles contained in the site cannot be copied or reproduced by other means without a license granted by the author. The public reproduction of a content of the site, in whole or in part, by any means, without the express written permission of the author, is prohibited.