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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2011 4:06 pm 
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Location: Pittsburgh, PA
I am just wondering how many other people have had this issue. I rode Look pedals all my life as a cyclist with no problems at all got a new bike and wanted to try something new so I switched over to Speedplay zero's. Shortly after riding a few weeks I developed a frontal knee pain that also developed into an IT band issue. Turned out to be a real pain in the @ss. After many adustments and a professional fit still had the issue (almost a year) I just went back to Look Keo's 2 carbon and to my amazement little to no pain on my trainer going for a ride this weekend to give the final test. I like the clip in and double sided entry of the zero's and of course the weight savings but I think my knee likes the feel of the looks. Can anyone tell me if anyone makes titanium spindles for the Look Keo 2 carbons.


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Posted: Thu Apr 21, 2011 4:06 pm 


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2011 4:14 pm 
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Once you find pedals, sadlle and bars that agree with your body. Don't change!

For me Speedplay X2, Aliante, FSA Compact. When I build a new bike I do not ask myself any question on these 3 components.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2011 5:17 pm 
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You can try : http://titaniumspindles.com/

The "obvious" answer is that the Looks have more stack height, so you effectively lowered your saddle when you switched back. But you said you had a professional fit and tried many adjustments...

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2011 5:48 pm 
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I have. Speedplays totally messed up my legs. Even setup perfectly and dialed down to zero float there is still so much rock and play. It is amazing how hard the legs have to work to stabilize the foot on these pedals. I am on Keo2Max and feel great.
I think Speedplay is good for people who have perfect pedal strokes or don't ride much.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2011 7:18 pm 
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boots2000 wrote:
I have. Speedplays totally messed up my legs. Even setup perfectly and dialed down to zero float there is still so much rock and play. It is amazing how hard the legs have to work to stabilize the foot on these pedals. I am on Keo2Max and feel great.
I think Speedplay is good for people who have perfect pedal strokes or don't ride much.


If there's rock, your adapter plate may be worn. There's certainly people who've been riding for up to 20 years w/o problem on Speedplay.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2011 9:52 pm 
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I second on stack height.
I develop IT band when my seat is extended too high, Speedplay or not.
Has nothing to do with a free float.

BTW I've been on X1 Speedplay close to 20 years and I do not consider
Zero a free float system at all, not even with a range of adjustment.
If you've never ridden X1 you have no idea what free float is.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2011 10:16 pm 
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djconnel wrote:
You can try : http://titaniumspindles.com/

The "obvious" answer is that the Looks have more stack height, so you effectively lowered your saddle when you switched back. But you said you had a professional fit and tried many adjustments...



The OP stated "frontal knee pain". Anterior knee pain would normally be associated with a saddle that is too low. Speedplays would have effectively raised his saddle. The IT band issues on the other hand can be caused by too much float, saddle too high, too far back, too much foot internal rotation.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 22, 2011 10:56 pm 
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I switched from old Look cleats to new Look Keo cleats and got front knee pain. I thought it was a result of the stiffer floating action of the new cleats. It wasn't. The stack height change between new and old cleats was not what Look insrtructions said it was. Result: saddle too low.
Raising saddle fixed the problem.
So, my (non expert) view is that your problem was stack/saddle height and not the Speedplays themselves.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 22, 2011 11:08 pm 
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I used the old Look-style Dura Ace pedals for years and then tried switching to Speedplay for a team sponsorship years ago. That lasted two weeks. By the end of it I had such bad tendonitis that I couldn't walk. I lowered my set to compensate for the lower stack height. Had everything lined up and professionally fit with the Speedplays, but for whatever reason no matter what I adjusted to try and correct things, the float of the pedals killed me. Went back to my trusty DA pedals and my former position and was right as rain in about a week.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 22, 2011 11:27 pm 
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There's also lateral cleat placement. Were you sure that was the same? Hard for me to see how the marginal float in Zeros can directly cause knee problems.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 23, 2011 11:49 am 
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I have always wanted to love Speedplays. The theory behind them, with the masses of adjustment options, is great. The float about the center of the pedal and the ability to make angular float adjustments and lateral placement adjustments independent of each other is great. But, man oh man, do they ever fall down in the execution. The rapid wear and rocking, the poor bearings and the susceptibility of the cleat to the ingress of dirt and contaminants render these things as extremely fragile. I get seduced by the idea of them every few years and give them another shot and I always wonder what got me so interested.

Recently I had one set of Zeros that exhibited the dreaded cleat rock right out of the box! Everything was brand new and unused, shoes included. Left cleat & pedal were rocking away before I had even turned the pedals on a ride!


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 24, 2011 5:42 am 
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Location: Australia
spinwax wrote:
djconnel wrote:
You can try : http://titaniumspindles.com/

The "obvious" answer is that the Looks have more stack height, so you effectively lowered your saddle when you switched back. But you said you had a professional fit and tried many adjustments...



The OP stated "frontal knee pain". Anterior knee pain would normally be associated with a saddle that is too low. Speedplays would have effectively raised his saddle. The IT band issues on the other hand can be caused by too much float, saddle too high, too far back, too much foot internal rotation.


SW, I would second your comments.

I'm just thinking out loud and human physiology isn't my area of expertise (plant biotechnology and genetics is): I wonder if the excessive float or float that allows lateral movement too easily causes the stability muscles to have to work more. For example, if I walk on soft sand or ice (think: speedplay float system), the muscles around my knees are having to work harder to keep my foot in the correct orientation relative to the direction of travel. Contrast this with, for example, walking along a dirt road when a small amount of movement (twist) is allowed as the foot strikes the ground and this is good as it helps the foot orient itself more correctly (think: look red cleat with friction) than what it might if it were on concrete and in joggers (effectively zero twist at the feet) (think: look black cleat). In the case of the walking on ice situation, when done for excessive periods of time, muscles would tighten to help stabilise the joint OR your body might start to walk with it's movement extended towards it's upper limits in one direction (for example, on the bike, this may mean pedaling with the heels outwards). Pedaling with the heels outwards would cause enhanced use of the outer quad (vastus lateralis) and probably hip/glute tensors and decreased use of the inner quad. This could affect tracking of the patella over the knee joint as it extends (front of the knee pain) or may be associated with over-tightening of the ITB (which is associated with outer knee pain).

Now, it's not hard to imagine that rocking of the feet (caused by having an unstable platform) could also lead to similar problems. I've often mused of Specialized claims of increased efficiency with their BG shoes by sloping the foot outwards. If tight ITBs are such a big problem with cyclists, why would you want to have the ITB even tighter by rolling the foot outwards?

If there are any physios/doctors/ex physiologists out there that could contribute there thoughts for the greater good, that would be excellent!


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2011 12:11 pm 
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Same deal here. Frontal knee problems developed with Speedplays. Ended up ditching my Zero Tis for ultegras. Problem gone.

I tried adjusting float and seat height whilst using speedplays, but couldnt get it right.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2011 1:27 pm 
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Location: Canada
Which cleat do you use for your Looks? I went from toeclips and straps to the first Looks when they were invented. If I went to a pedal with float, I am pretty sure that I would notice it, too.


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Posted: Wed Jun 15, 2011 1:27 pm 


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2011 9:13 pm 
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Illuminate wrote:
Now, it's not hard to imagine that rocking of the feet (caused by having an unstable platform) could also lead to similar problems. I've often mused of Specialized claims of increased efficiency with their BG shoes by sloping the foot outwards. If tight ITBs are such a big problem with cyclists, why would you want to have the ITB even tighter by rolling the foot outwards?

I don't see why rolling the foot outward would tighten the ITB. It may tighten some of the lateral structures on the calf, but that tension should be isolated to the lower half of the leg.

I've been riding Specialized BG shoes for 5 years and will probably never buy another brand of shoe if they maintain their design characteristics. The varus wedge design has never caused me pain or fit issues; in fact compared to the Bontrager shoes I bought for my mountain bike, the varus wedge provides significantly noticeable comfort gains.

When I started riding my Speedplays years ago, it certainly took me a couple months to develop the stabilizing muscle tone and muscle memory to be comfortable on the pedals. Coming from a Look-style pedal I think requires much more than 2-3 weeks of adjustment time. If you want to make the switch I would recommend trying it at the end of the road season when you have months to adjust (if you ever do adjust) and still time left over to readjust to a different pedal if Speedplays don't work out.

That said, I am probably going to abandon my Speedplays ASAP after reading about the harassment they bring upon their loyal users/modifiers/resellers.


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