Peloton shoes are purposeful for Peloton Bikes since they have been designed with a 3-screw hole set up at the bottom to be affixed on the bike’ Delta-compatible cleats.
Suppose you wear a regular sneaker to ride a normal bike but now want to step up by getting an indoor bike with clip-in bike shoes. In that case, you’d agree with me that Peloton is a popular name in the market.
It is particularly popular among cyclists due to its affordability, as you can find cycling shoes priced cheaper than $125 on the Peloton website.
However, the maxim you get what you pay for sometimes comes to play when you get a pair of Peloton shoes.
Some people find the peloton shoes incredibly uncomfortable from the start (with no signs of improvement or breaking in), while others have done modifications to make them more comfortable.
To some others, the ratchet straps are a turn-off because they put pressure on the top of their feet, while the sole’s stiffness makes the shoeless glorified to some reviewers.
While each set of feet is unique, these problems are valid, and they account for some of the issues that I have discovered with Peloton bike shoes.
In the rest of this article, we will look at these areas of downsides and ways you can handle them if you are to invest in a pair sooner or later.
6 problems with Peloton Shoes and solutions
The major problems faced by a majority of Peloton special shoe users, as sourced from popular online forums and evident in personal experiences, run across the following issues:
- Peloton shoes run narrow and are stiff
- Peloton shoes are pricey
- Peloton shoes are only compatible with Delta cleats
- Problem with wearing socks
- Fewer colors/options to choose from
- Challenging DIYs for these special shoes
We will look at the reasons behind each of these shortcomings and possible solutions that you can provide to improve your experience in Peloton shoes as you work out on your Peloton bike indoors.
Shoes run narrow and are stiff
There is no doubt that Peloton shoes have superb quality pairs for indoor cycling. But one of the major problems that most users can resonate with is how they aren’t wider and less stiff.
Although the sole of any ideal cycling shoe should be stiff and rigid, that is made out of carbon such that it can’t be bent to offer the necessary support to your feet when you’re moving – an improvement from those older cycling shoes that used to feature leather, which gave no real help.
The stiff upper of the branded Peloton shoes is advantageous because they contribute to the very secure fastening system, so when you’re pedaling, your foot stays secure.
However, it remains a significant problem that every Peloton shoe user will have to get used to or find a way to make it less stiff for their feet size.
Hence, if you decide you want to buy the Peloton brand cycling shoes, you need first to know that Peloton men’s bike shoes do not come in every size.
Suppose you use half size, keep in mind that there are only two sizes equivalent to a half size – 0.5 and 13.5.
- It is no news that Peloton indoor cycling shoes are one of the priciest shoes (more on this as a downside shortly), so to avoid the stiff and narrow fit in the first place, I recommend buying these after you try them on; if you can.
- Alternatively, you can make use of sizing directions provided by the brand. Yes, there is no shoe size chart or shoe sizing guide on the Peloton website, but you will find size “translations” right in the cart that will give you directions on choosing the right size to prevent a narrow fit. (It is usually among the women’s size that you will find Peloton bike shoes for a boy)
- Another solution is to forgo peloton shoes and opt for a more comfortable pair compatible with a peloton indoor cycling bike. In this light, I’d recommend this Shimano RC1. they are lightweight, incredibly breathable, and easy to wear.
Finally, on the problem of the narrow and stiff fit of Peloton branded shoes, it is worth noting that they are convenient, despite these flaws, and you can purchase them along with a Peloton bike, and they come with cleats in the box.
So, if these are things you can sacrifice for the final solution preferred, it’s up to you.
They are Pricey
Peloton shoes may help increase efficiency in your workouts and more safety and security when you’re on the bike. But, they are quite an investment.
The average cost of the branded Peloton shoes is around $125 and comes in one unisex model and color: black with red interior lining.
The price is considered higher than the average cost of many other alternative special cycling shoes that still work well for peloton bikes.
They are only compatible with Delta cleats, making the price questionable since versatility is limited.
However, some cheaper pair options will not provide any little pamphlet to guide you through attaching the cleats to your shoes and how to clip in and out of the bike the way Peloton includes such in their shoes. (it comes in the total package, after all)
But still, even the cheaper models that are considered a suitable alternative to Peloton dedicated shoes have plastic ratchet fastening or velcro straps which are fine.
What sells shoes made by the Peloton brand are the adjustable straps and Comfortable tongue design. But these are things we see in alternatives, too, so the high cost will remain a downside.
Moreover, Peloton special shoes for Peloton bikes can only be bought via Peloton and purchased in a bundle with your Peloton bike or on their own.
So, what could be the solution to cutting costs without sacrificing the value derived from buying the Peloton branded shoes?
- As long as the budget remains a factor, the best solution is to glance at some affordable options that do not measure low to the heights of Peloton shoes.
For example, brands like this impressive Nike SuperRep Cycle Shoe. The Giro Regime Women’s Road shoes are also a reasonable option but don’t beat the Santic Cycling Shoes, one of my favorite ‘Plan B.’
- Determine whether or not you need special shoes for your Peloton. This can help you save some money and avoid problems down the road.
- Examine what is suitable for you and your particular circumstance. The branded Peloton shoes aren’t a must before you enjoy the full potential of your Peloton bike indoors.
Only compatible with Delta cleats
The branded Peloton shoes for Peloton bikes are designed with a three-hole arrangement for adjusting stability.
This feature makes the shoe use the look delta cleats Peloton. In other words, it will only work for pedals made of the branch such as TRIO that uses the look delta cleat feature.
The catch here is that there are some Look delta cycling shoes and delta clip bike shoes that won’t give you a comfortable fit.
Not to mention how the design that makes the shoe only compatible with delta cleats has limited its versatility as an indoor cycling shoe.
Peloton shoes feature two velcro straps and a ratchet clip so that you can adjust the tightness.
Of course, they have a breathable upper and a mesh vent on the base, but they don’t feel any airier than other cycling shoes, as one will most likely still feel their sweat trapped within the shoes.
The delta-cleat-only compatibility makes the soles and the material used in the shoes both quite stiff. But on the brighter side, it increases power output, but one will have to get used to it.
- The Delta cleats’ compatibility is a major feature to look for in shoes that will work with peloton bikes since their function is to click into the foot pedals. But, it means it can’t be used for other situations with no delta cleats.
- Since Delta cleats are detachable and have three holes, You’d want to first ask about the cleats, especially if you’re buying used Peloton branded shoes so that you don’t have to purchase them separately.
- Buying Peloton shoes that do not include the cleats may be advantageous. Calculate the cost of this additional expense. It might surprise you that recent shoe designs for Peloton shoes are versatile and more cost-effective.
Problem with wearing socks
People often recount problems of uncomfortable fit when they wear certain types of athletic socks in their branded Peloton Shoes. And, too-tight shoes can pinch and cause us to have a hard time during a workout.
This is an identified problem to which there are solutions. It can be traced back to the size chosen when shopping for the shoe.
Unfortunately, some Peloton shoes don’t come in half sizes.
- If you are going to be wearing socks each time you wear those Peloton shoes, it is a general rule to get a half-size larger than you usually wear.
- Going up your size is better in any given situation because your shoes will be tightly secured into the pedals so that you won’t slip around.
- Consider the kind of socks you prefer to wear for working out. If you wear thicker socks, go for peloton shoes half a size larger.
Fewer colors/options to choose from
There are a few problems attached to purchasing Peloton shoes, and the limitation of color options is an obvious problem.
You will want to consider these before making your decision ongoing for the actual Peloton shoes.
While there are several different perks to getting the official ones like safer rides, more deliberate strides, warranty, and excellent quality, problems like fewer color options that make them useful only in specific circumstances will remain something every buyer will have to deal with.
- Everyone is different. So the problem of limited color and appearance choice is based on aesthetic appeal than the taste for performance. So you have to evaluate your athletic ambitions and what’s important to you. Black and Red are not a bad color choice for an indoor cycling shoe.
Challenging DIYs for these special shoes
Lastly, it will be a quick observation to any new user of the official Peloton shoes that, sometimes, it becomes difficult to position the cleats. Also, replacing the heel pad can be a challenging task.
Some even complain that the plastic screw-plates make it hard to install the cleats as experienced in similar shoes for Peloton bikes too.
While it is advisable to use Peloton shoes compatible with Peloton bikes, these shoes don’t hold up as long as outdoor running shoes.
They could last for a year; suppose you use them more on a weekly basis.
- Caring for your peloton shoe can prolong its life than waiting for something to go wrong and now looking for DIY hacks to fix problems.
- It is best to replace your Peloton bike shoes yearly if you are the kind that rides several times a week.
- If you notice any pains on the side of your foot while wearing the official Peloton shoes, change them without thinking twice.
So far, we have covered the common problems owners of peloton shoes usually encounter and possible solutions to eliminate them.
The remark or discredit on Peloton shoes should not be generalized because shoes are extremely personal.
The Peloton brand rolled out a new version of their bike shoes sometime in 2022 named the Altos, which took a look and feel of a sneaker or tennis shoe than a spin shoe.
This set was considered best than the original Peloton bike shoes, stretching and being more comfortable, but it equally got its fair share of negative reviews.
So., there’s, indeed, no ‘best’ shoe or ‘right’ way to set them up, as every bike footwear and brand has its positive and negative sides.
The best thing in your self-interest is to know what works for you. Identifying the common challenges associated with the Peloton footwear and knowing possible solutions is one good thing to do as you intend to invest in a pair.
I hope you found this article helpful in that sense.
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