From the Forums: Clipless or flat pedals for mountain biking?

Which type of pedal is better for mountain biking?

From the Forums
Are clipless pedals or flats better for mountain biking?

Are clipless pedals or flats better for mountain biking?

Are clipless pedals or flats better for mountain biking? As with so many things in life, the answer is “it depends.”

Riders in our All-Mountain forum are debating the pros and cons of clipless and flat pedals. Some riders point out that they’re able to tackle more technical climbs when clipped in, thanks to the ability to generate power while pulling up as well as pushing down on the pedals. Other mountain bikers countered that their worst crashes occurred in low-speed situations when they were not able to unclip before falling over.

Some folks mix it up depending on the discipline—flats for trail riding and jumping and clipless pedals for cross-country racing.

What do you think? Do you clip in to win, or think flat pedals win medals? Share your pedal preferences with us here.


  • Shark says:

    Flats for sure. Clippless are *so*10 years ago.

    Why does mtbr allow facebook comments? They are mostly all spam.

  • TippyD says:

    Flats for technical skills development, jumping and roosting it in the loose stuff. Clips for longer, flatter, endurance, XC riding. They are both good. Depends on what you want and like.

    • The Chad says:

      I guess I am the opposite. Clipless CB’s for chunky steep rough stuff. if I’m pedaling I prefer flats in the event I stall out climbing in Rocky or off camber stuff.

      Clipless crashes are always worse but I am a hell of a lot faster through technical sections. Deity TMACs are so big they catch on everything!

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