Toe Pointing slightly at the bottom of my stroke

I just got a bike fit and the biggest change was raising my saddle height. I can definitely feel more power overall - and less jamming of my hip angle at the top of the stroke. everything felt great but I am so used to mashing the pedals down it feels like now at the very bottom my foot is slightly toe down…like 2-3 degrees. I can get it flat if I concentrate on it being flat.

I am pretty committed to trying this fit out for a while.

The only thing I’m wondering is should I focus on forcing my foot flat at the bottom? or is a little bit of toe down pointing maybe my natural position?

(fwiw I hit a personal best time on a route I frequently take…and I was noticeably stronger on uphills especially.)

thank you!

  • Have you asked your fitter about this?
  • They are best poised to address this considering the changes they made and reasons for doing so (that we can only guess from limited info).

That said, foot position through the bottom of the stroke can and does vary between riders. There is no “right/perfect” position broadly speaking. It’s best to avoid extremes (toe point or heel drop) in many cases, so that is worth keeping in mind.

As long as there are not comfort or pain issues, a bit of a toe point downward is fine in my book. A bit like the cadence discussion (“best” is what comes naturally), I think foot position should just “happen” and not be forced in most cases.

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Thank you Chad!!

I will definitely ask the fitter about it. I want to learn more about the technique itself so I can make the most of our conversation.

I guess how do I know if the toe point is natural for me? or if i’m only doing it because of the seat height?

(there is no pain…feels great…just unusual to what I’m used to.)

I watch the rider as I make adjustments and use a combo of my observations along with rider feedback.

  • As long as the toe point is not some sort of “hitch” at the bottom of the stroke, I think it may be fine. The “hitch” is one possible way that riders can overcome a saddle height too high. It tends to look like a very quick “dip” that seems almost out of time with the rest of a fluid looking pedal stroke. Riders may feel this too as a direct motion.

  • If the saddle height change was somewhat large, it could just be the fact that you are getting used to a better and more efficient stroke that feels different. Anytime I make a large change for a rider, we discuss the potential for time to adapt to the change. It may feel odd at first if they were very accustomed to the prior setup. Taking some shorter riders at lower efforts is my common starting point to recommend. Then as they move on, just make sure there are no new issues for comfort or pain. If that happens, I sometimes cut the change a bit in effort to make a smaller step with a possible goal of returning to that “best” height setup.

cleat position was checked but not moved much. he said it was spot on. (just a very very tiny sideways move and he said that wasn’t even necessary but I could try it and move it back based on comfort).

ok great thank you. I didn’t notice a hitch but i’ll look for it.

they fitter was super super solid and I trust him. his fit process was as you described (looked at me from every angle and asked for my feedback).

this is one of the better forums (not just bicycling) where info is freely shared without nonsense. learn so much from you all!

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Personally, I think you should pedal without thinking where the heel is going. Just let whatever happens, happen naturally.

i think whether the fitter went too high with the saddle is a different question.