Cleat Position and Hip Flexor Pain

Hey there.

I was wondering if all you knowledge people could help me out.

My cycling shoes recently died after five years of loyal service and I had to buy a new model. I’ve done my absolute best to match the cleat positions but I’ve had some pretty major hip flexor pain since the change (beginning in my right hip, but then appearing in my left). The pain really comes on when I’m working at sweet spot and above.

General background: been riding for about eight years. Had a pro fit on my road bike and TT bike. FTP is 4.25 w/kg. Basically, I’m not a beginner, and this has just come on with the new shoes. I’ve had pain free riding for years.

Could you give me any advice about what might be causing this? Is there a common idea with cleat position? Are they perhaps too far back or too forward? Should I widen my foot position? Point my toes in more? Could stack height be the issue and I should raise my seat a few mm? Is this a common issue with a common solution?

Sorry if this seems like a pretty basic question, but after having not thought about this since my last pair of shoes five years ago, I feel like I’m starting from scratch!

Some existing discussion with worthwhile info on basic approaches:

Without performing proper fit, it’s hard to do more than guess here. If at all possible, I’d suggest getting a fit to address this fully, in person.

Short of that, learning about your precise current setup (shoes, cleat position and alignment) and how it compares to your old setup (shoe brand and style if possible, not to mention cleat setup) would be very valuable.

1 Like

Don’t forget about a possible stack height difference with the new shoes compared to your old ones. Might need to raise/lower your saddle to accommodate.


Thanks for the responses, both. I’m going to read that other thread now.

I think stack height might be where I start. I’m just loathe to adjust my saddle height after it’s been perfect for so long! But I guess it was only perfect with my old shoes.

1 Like

Yup, any single component change may lead to needs to adjust somewhere else. Shoes could have different stack height for sure, especially since there may be changes in the insole, not to mention the main shoe construction.

And depending on how you looked at your old shoe and cleat position, the typical markers people use may well be misleading and got you to a “different” cleat position despite your best efforts.