We talked with bike fitter Ben Waite (who also happens to be a Zipp wheel design engineer) about the importance of pedals to proper fit and efficiency on the bike.
ALSO SEE PART 1 OF OUR CONVERSATION ON TIME PEDAL FEATURES
What role do pedals play in bike fit?
BEN: It is a critical point. There are five connection points to the bike: your saddle, each hand on the handlebar, and both feet. It's 40 percent of your connection points. But also, it's where you transfer power to your drivetrain. The cleat and pedal interface is essential.
What is a specific issue a rider should consider when considering pedals as part of their bike fit?
The primary concern should be saddle height. A lot of people have different bikes. A road bike with a road pedal system, then a gravel bike or mountain bike. We measure saddle height to the center of the bottom bracket, assuming similarities all the way down to the pedal. So, if you have a larger stack height on your mountain bike system, you have to take that into account with your saddle height.
For example, the XC MTB pedals have a stack height of 19mm, and the XPRO road pedals 13.5mm. You want the bottom of your foot in the same spot every time on the bottom of your pedal stroke. So, your saddle height measurement from the bottom bracket up will be different on your road bike and your mountain bike.