Bunion relief in cycling shoes

Hello, I have what I would consider mild bunions. I definitely have a bulge at the base of both of my big toes. All toes still track and point straight forward though, for now. I do experience some pressure in the area in my cycling shoes (specialized s-works road shoes) at more at the end of long rides. I of course open up and loosen the lower part of the shoes as much as possible as well.
Curious if anyone has any experience in this area and suggestions?
I am looking at possibly trying some bunion corrector sleeves from amazon maybe but concerned if the sleeve and toe separator will change the fit of my shoes too much.

I’ve had some issues with tailor’s bunions (small toe), and ended up cutting holes in my shoes. As long as I wear dark socks it doesn’t look that bad in my black shoes. I also found I could relieve pressure in that area by just slicing the shoe in the area that pressed against my foot there, and this was hardly noticeable. I made horizontal slices the whole length of the area, then on the strips I made vertical cuts half-way through the strips alternating top and bottom - this made the strip much more stretchy.
I’ve moved to wide shoes for everyday wear, and when I replace my cycling shoes I will be looking for wider shoes.

Shoe stretchers may help. Plan on leaving them in there for a few days or replacing after each ride. If the bunion bumps that come with the stretchers don’t line up with your problem area get a rock and tape it in the right place. Even non-stretch materials can give a little with enough time and the seams will give a little too.

Maybe try some heat-mouldable shoes - although there might not be much of the mouldable material around the side of the foot that far down, I think they tend to be more under the sole/arch and around the sides of the heel. If it’s a major problem that stops you riding then custom-made shoes might be the order of the day (Bont, Rocket 7 and D2 all do fully custom shoes, or you could get some from Adam Hansen if you gotta have the best).

Cycling Shoes for Bunions, Lake have designed a shoe to wrap around foot issues like this. The Lake CX241 Road Cycling Shoes Lake CX241 Road Cycling Shoes It’s Foam inside with a leather skeleton to wrap around. They also do a Wide fit version and MX for MTB. If it’s small Bunion with leather cycling shoes like Lake CX238’s you can use a shoe stretcher to push that area out. Synthetic materials used in specialized you won’t be able to as once it’s in that shape it will stay that way.


I had a cobbler punch out the area by my big toe on a pair of shoes years ago. The shoe was synthetic and it worked like a charm. That might be the way to go here…

My feet were a mess after Chemo, mainly corns developed. I got an initial ‘ouch’ from wearing my Sidi’s but amazingly for a longer rides they were comfortable and I would forgot about the corns, even on 100mile rides. Thankfully, my feet have finally began to heal and the corns are almost gone and there’s no longer that initial ‘ouch’ :slight_smile:

Luckily I don’t suffer from bunions, but I was browsing the Internet for other reasons and I found this


Don’t know if it helps, but I thought it would be good to share. There a few more brands too depending where you live

Had the same problem. Rides were pretty painful. Went to a podiatrist who gave me some tips on how to change my gait to heel strike more instead of striking my arch. Changed all my shoes from hard sole shoes at work to soft sole running shoes. Solved the issue for me.

FootFitter Professional Ball & Ring Cast Iron Bunion Stretcher

Same problem. I got this and seems to do a great job in making little indentations in my S-Works shoes.

But with two bumpouts per shoes we’re talking about a week! Had to redo a couple of bumpouts as I didn’t stretch the fabric enough.

This seems far more effective than the foot-shaped shoe stretchers.

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+1 on the ball and ring stretcher tool. With a heat gun just be careful. Very effective though IME.

Loosening the muscles in the bottom of the foot will help a ton, roll a golf ball or a lacrosse ball under your foot and smash the bottoms of your feet for relief.

As someone with wide feet and bunion surgery as a teen, prior to knowing preventative measures. Had surgery at 17, am now 33 and have occasional issues still, I would try to avoid surgery and do exercises if at all possible.

Aside from smashing your feet out with a ball I’d look into some exercises to help try to restructure your feet. The following link is a series of exercises that will greatly help your feet if they are not too far gone.

I also buy Lake shoes as they are one of the few companies who make their shoes wider and/or have wide options for most shoes they offer.

100% will testify to Lake, they have been a life saver, could barely get my bear paws into a pair of Bontragers or S-Works!

Right on!