Jaybird180

Balls of Feet or Instep

12 posts in this topic

When I first started riding it was intuitive to hook the heel of my boot onto the peg, right where my instep was. By my 2nd trackday I began to drag toes.

I heard it repeated many times about standing on the balls of your feet and now needed to change to avoid the abovementioned problem.

There's a video in YouTube of Troy Corser teaching instep and I see the merits of both techniques.

Watching the Aragon WSBK race, I'm now convinced that I've seen enough that the trend is now back to insteps; possibly even hybrid method.

I'm not a "me too" type of guy but it looks like Jonny Rea uses balls on the inside leg and instep on his outside leg; straightaway he's on instep. I see the merits of instep for straights, it requires less energy.

My observation is that balls of feet on inside leg does 2 things: 1- Avoids above problem and 2- more leverage for countersteering. The con is that it's more to think about/do and I'd have another habit change to endure.

What are your experiences with foot placement?

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Definitely the main reason to put the balls of your feet on the pegs is to avoid dragging your toes or catching your toe on inside curbing.

It does also make it easier to do a calf raise to drive your knee up into the tank for a secure hold. 

I'm going to speculate here - the racers that have the outside foot arch on the peg may be holding on more with their upper inner thigh which might make the outside foot rotate out a little, making it hard to keep the ball of the foot  on the peg without slipping off. 

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Thanks Hotfoot. Substitute  Arch of foot for Instep

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Personally, I do a bit of both. My inside foot is always on the ball but I'll do the outside foot differently depending on the corner and the speed.

At a high speed, I tend to use the ball and do the calf raise lock more to the outside of the tank.

On slow corners, I tend to use the arch and hold my thigh on the back of the tank rather than knee in the side.

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My preference with my outside foot is to put the ball of my foot on the peg and drive my heel up into the heel guard which helps stabilize my lower leg. I have small feet and can't reach the heelguard if I slide my foot down to the arch/instep.

When I began coaching I started to REALLY notice it when a rider would come by me on the freeway with their toes sticking way down past the peg. I know it's probably more comfortable for long rides but it sure does catch my attention.

What about dirt riding? For those of you that do any dirt riding, where do you put your feet?

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Even in dirt riding (the little I do/have done) I end up with my feet on the balls...find it easier to stand and move around.

Same on the street/road bike, find it easier to move, and don't want that inside foot a draggin...for sure at least one coach I can think of has his outside food on the arch.

I also have very short legs, so it helps with anchoring.

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Aha! So those that are inseam challenged can possibly favor toes. I have rearsets and they're at the most relaxed position and it's still too much for my long legs. I only put them on to go GP Shift (and they look nice). Arch to pegs gives me a little more room and I think it might be worth going through the pain of change again.

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I'm inseam challenged the opposite way of Cobie, and I prefer to keep the balls of my feet on the pegs as well. Simply because it requires time, energy and attention for me to move my right foot back and forth. For reason I cannot explain, moving my left foot forward/back to operate the gear lever is not a problem for me :huh:

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39 minutes ago, khp said:

I'm inseam challenged the opposite way of Cobie, and I prefer to keep the balls of my feet on the pegs as well. Simply because it requires time, energy and attention for me to move my right foot back and forth. For reason I cannot explain, moving my left foot forward/back to operate the gear lever is not a problem for me :huh:

Your competence at it means that you spend less of your $10 on it.

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I'll chime in about the off road bit,  

I find I vary my foot position a lot,  when attacking whoops or attempting some crazy rock infested hill I'm for sure on the balls of my feet,  but extended periods of stand up riding on the balls of you feet will fatigue you calves pretty quick, so I often switch to the arches or even on my heels for a bit to let my calves relax. If I expect to be using a lot of rear brake then I'll have my right foot on the arch and cover the brake with my toe. 

 

Dirt riding encompasses a lot more variety and terrain than a road track so I find you have to change things up a lot more.  I'm sure it also depends a lot on what kind of dirt riding your doing. I have 0 experience at MX tracks but I did enjoy a nice 40 mile loop through the SoCal desert last Sunday, so my experience is skewed towards long off road and trails riding.

 

 

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Interesting to see all this stuff...got me thinking about hands...I'll start another thread on that.

CF

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