Education

Cycling Shoe Surgery

Posted By Robyn Hughes, ND

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Comments
June 01 2016
Greg Speck

I was able to resurrect shoes that were causing ingrown toenails and make them comfortable. Cutting slits on the areas that were too tight did the trick. Thank you so much for this great advice.

June 01 2016
Natural Footgear

Hi, Greg,

Thank you for checking out the article and for your positive feedback. We appreciate your comment!

For more helpful information, check out our newsletter and free online courses:

http://naturalfootgear.us4.list-manage.com/subscribe/post?u=4f2eb7b9a0edaa5b1de4c18fd&id=1420cc105b

Best,
Marty Hughes, DC

June 17 2016
Jeff

Greatly appreciate your article on cycling shoe surgery. Especially given that I am currently recovering from Morton’s neuroma surgery on both feet. I would deeply appreciate pictures of the four modifications you made to your shoes. I love riding and want to get back to all day rides without burning painful feet. Thanks!

June 17 2016
Natural Footgear

Hi, Jeff,

Thank you for your message. We’ll be posting more images in the near future, so check back soon for those. In the meantime, I have included some resources below that may be helpful for you in regaining foot health post surgery:

Athletes Email Course:
http://naturalfootgear.com/pages/are-you-an-athlete-who-struggles-with-foot-pain

Neuromas & Natural Foot Health:
www.naturalfootgear.com/blogs/education/17888880-neuromas-natural-foot-health

Six Ways to Restore Foot Health After Surgery:
www.naturalfootgear.com/blogs/education/17914760-six-ways-to-restore-foot-health-after-surgery

Neuromas: Conventional vs. Natural Approaches:
http://naturalfootgear.com/blogs/education/17888868-neuromas-conventional-vs-natural-approaches

I hope this info helps!

Kind regards,
Laura Trentman

June 17 2016
John

My problem is what I believe to be a neuroma between my fourth and fifth metatarsals. Not sure I’m ready to cut up my shoes, but I will try taking out the liners and loosening the toe straps.

June 17 2016
Natural Footgear

Hi, John,

Thank you for your message. Every individual is unique in terms of their foot health needs, and we can’t comment on your specific case without the benefit of a full health history interview and physical examination. Our best recommendation is to check out this list of healthcare providers to see if any are in your area:

www.nwfootankle.com/resources/122-healthcare-providers

You’ll be able to get a much more detailed answer from any of these providers about what’s going on in your foot. Alternatively, you might consider scheduling a phone or Skype consultation with the healthcare team at Northwest Foot & Ankle, in Portland, OR. This is a great option for discussing your particular foot care concerns.

We do offer an educational email course on neuromas if you are interested in learning more about how to prevent or address this issue using natural approaches. You can sign up for the free course, here:

www.naturalfootgear.com/pages/do-you-have-foot-pain

Taking the liners out of your cycling shoes is a great way to give your toes more room to splay. Loosening the toe straps (especially that lowest one, out near your toes) is another good and simple technique to reduce some of the pressure on your toes.

I hope this info helps!

Kind regards,
Laura Trentman

July 04 2016
Michael Yares

I have just come upon your site and blog today. I’ve been reading through the articles.

When coming upon this article, it made me wonder why you wouldn’t use a high-quality platform pedal and street shoe? My personal experience in converting to platform pedals from cleats was a refreshing one.

I look forward to reading and learning more from your site. Thank you for all the great info!

Michael

July 04 2016
Natural Footgear

Hi, Michael,

Thank you for checking out our site, and we are so glad that you asked this question. We do indeed like the combination of a foot-healthy shoe and a simple, flat-pedal strapping system for folks who are looking for an alternative to conventional cycling shoes. This set-up can provide a welcome change for the feet and the great feeling of knowing that your toes are still aligned when pedaling your bike.

Thanks again for checking out the site and we hope that you continue to read our articles.

Kind regards,
Laura Trentman

July 04 2016
Kat Scherer

I recommend adding a fifth technique to your list: Crushing the hard toe box tip with a hammer (you can use a hammer to soften other parts of the upper as well). Crushing the hard insert in the toe box can add lateral room to a shoe that may have enough toe box volume, but may be too narrow or too tall. This can create a more “flat” but “wide” toe box.

July 04 2016
Natural Footgear

Hi, Kat,

Thank you for your message and your tip! We will indeed incorporate your suggestion into this article, and we look forward to trying out your suggestion. Thanks again and let us know if you have any questions!

Kind regards,
Laura Trentman

July 04 2016
Heather

What about the mountain biking system? There are more shoe options that look like normal shoes. Or how about saving piles of money and riding with flat pedals? You can wear any old shoes. I’ve never had a problem. I could never fit into tight cycling shoes, so it was never an option (admittedly, I was afraid of being clipped in). The trend right now, at least in random and touring, is to use wide downhill platform pedals. Lots of support with little to no reports of pedal strike and such.

July 04 2016
Natural Footgear

Hi, Heather,

Thank you for your message. We’ve found that, while there are indeed more options (especially when it comes to shoe shape) for mountain biking shoes, there still is not an ideal option for pedaling. Better, yes, but still not sufficiently wide in the toe box for most people.

I really like your flat pedal idea, especially when the pedal is combined with a simple and effective strapping system to keep the foot in place and the power transfer high. Pedal strike on sharp corners is a consideration in some cases, but this can be managed pretty easily once you’ve adjusted to the new system.

Kind regards,
Marty Hughes, DC

August 26 2016
Mike Sweeney

Great article! I developed really bad knee pain as soon as I started wearing clipless shoe pedals and my feet would cramp up frequently, especially on downhills. I didn’t think it would be a very difficult transition. A lifetime of wearing soccer cleats has made my pinky toes useless and given me a full-blown bunionette as well as neuromas on both feet. I love soccer, but a lot of these suggestions wouldn’t work for soccer cleats. Thanks for all the helpful content!

August 26 2016
Natural Footgear

Hi, Mike,

Thank you for your comment. We are thrilled that you enjoyed the article! We have many cyclists and soccer enthusiasts who regularly ask us about foot-healthy cycling shoes and cleats, and we are always on the lookout for new options for both sports.

I have included some additional resources below that you may find helpful in achieving optimal foot health:

Bunionettes:
www.naturalfootgear.com/blogs/education/17856604-bunionettes

Neuromas & Natural Foot Health:
www.naturalfootgear.com/blogs/education/17888880-neuromas-natural-foot-health

Tailor’s Bunions and Neuromas eCourses:
www.naturalfootgear.com/pages/do-you-have-foot-pain

Neuromas: Conventional vs. Natural Approaches:
www.naturalfootgear.com/blogs/education/17888868-neuromas-conventional-vs-natural-approaches

If you have any additional thoughts, please do send them our way!

Kind regards,
Laura Trentman

December 14 2016
John Hack

Does the Topo Sante have a grippy Vibram sole? Can it be used with a flat mountain bike pedal without the toe strap?

December 14 2016
Natural Footgear

Thank you for your questions, John! We appreciate you reaching out to us.

The Topo Sante has a regular rubber outsole (i.e., not a Vibram outsole), though it’s quite grippy in its own right and I haven’t had any issues with slipping on the pedal. Personally, I don’t see any reason why you couldn’t use this shoe in combination with a flat mountain bike pedal that does not possess a toe strap.

Note: The manufacturer has actually discontinued this model of shoe, so if we have any remaining stock in this model, they are the last of their kind. You can see our current lineup of men’s and women’s footwear (including athletic footwear) by visiting these pages:

Men’s Shoes:
www.naturalfootgear.com/collections/mens-shoes

Women’s Shoes:
www.naturalfootgear.com/collections/mens-shoes

Cheers!
Marty Hughes, DC

January 27 2017
James

If you want to improve your pedal setup, have a look at Pedaling Innovations Catalyst Pedal (www.pedalinginnovations.com). It is longer than the average flat pedal so it supports the foot at the ball and heel just like flat ground does.

January 27 2017
Natural Footgear

Hi, James,

Thank you for your message and for sharing your creation with us! A lot of what you describe in the video on your site’s homepage is in line with what we espouse here at Natural Footgear. The Catalyst Pedal looks very intriguing, and we would love to give it a try.

Kind regards,
Marty Hughes, DC

January 27 2017
John Nevin

Greetings,

Well, I wish I had known about your info, say, 30 years earlier! I am recovering from my first hammertoe procedure (1 of 2). Summary: flat feet, led to hallux rigidus, wear orthotics now, cheilectomies …it goes on. I was considering slicing up my bike shoes when I first saw your blog post, and I am glad I looked in on it again. Now I see you going retro vis-a-vis clipped pedals?! Wow! I love my SPD pedals, but I concede defeat.

The surgeon told me to expect the hammertoe condition to come back, and I want to do everything I can to NOT have that happen. I am a little unsure about the toe spacer you sell, as similar products I have tried in the past I have found unusable, uncomfortable, etc. But I want the best mix going forward once I get these surgeries out of the way. I need to start riding again!! Any advice is appreciated.

January 27 2017
Natural Footgear

Hi, John,

Thank you for your message! Better late than never, I say. Though we prefer to avoid surgery wherever possible, post-surgery can be a great time to implement natural foot health concepts and approaches. Your surgeon is correct that the hammertoe condition will probably recur … IF your toes remain subject to the cramped toe boxes of conventional footwear.

You might be interested in learning more about natural approaches to hammertoes, flat feet, hallux rigidus, and other foot and toe conditions by signing up for our free condition-specific e-courses on this page:

www.naturalfootgear.com/pages/newsletter-courses

You may also appreciate this article that we put together on the ways to restore foot health after surgery:

www.naturalfootgear.com/blogs/education/17914760-six-ways-to-restore-foot-health-after-surgery

In terms of Correct Toes, please check out this page to learn more about how this device differs from others currently available:

www.naturalfootgear.com/blogs/product-info/17922312-correct-toes-vs-other-toe-spacers

I sure do hope that you’ll be able to ride again soon! Best of luck to you with your foot and toe rehabilitation.

Kind regards,
Marty Hughes, DC

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