Mountain biking relies heavily on your pedaling motion because this is where the power comes from. You use your legs and transfer the energy to your foot and onto the pedals and eventually the drivetrain.

Hence, it makes perfect sense to use the right kind of shoes specifically designed for mountain biking.

Here, we’ll show you all you need to know about mountain bike shoes, what you need to do to maintain them, as well as some of the best choices out there.

What Do You Need to Know About Mountain Bike Shoes?

Types of shoes

There are two main types of mountain bike shoes. These are the flats and the clipless pedal shoes.

Flat shoes are like your regular rubber shoes that have a flat grippy sole that stands on your pedals. Meanwhile, a clipless mountain bike shoe has a cleat that acts as a connector that sticks your foot directly on your pedal’s cleats.

Maintenance tips

Mountain bike pedals are built for rugged use, which is why they can tolerate even the harshest of conditions. However, you also need to regrease and lubricate its inner bearings, specifically its spindles, to ensure a smooth rolling and rotation motion.

Benefits of wearing the right mtb shoes

Wearing the right mtb shoes is crucial to your performance because this is where your pedaling efficiency depends on.

This also makes it safer for you because your feet are less likely to slide off the pedals and cause you to crash. What’s more, is that you become a better and more confident rider as you gain maximum traction and balance on your bike.

Recommended Mountain Bike Shoes

Five Ten Trailcross: Most Versatile MTB Shoes

Five Ten Trailcross LT Mountain Bike Shoes Men's, Black, Size 10.5

The Five Ten Trailcross is the go-to shoe for trail riders. It’s a flat pedal shoe that resembles a design similar to most hiking and mountain climbing shoes.

This also stands out because of its low-profile design and minimalistic aesthetic. Its upper layer is made from breathable mesh. It also has a lace closure for a more specified fit, depending on your own preferences. You can also wear this flat pedal shoe on and off the bike because of its casual design.\

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Five Ten Freerider: Best Affordable Trail Shoes

Five Ten Freerider Mountain Bike Shoes

The Five Ten Freerider is the best trail shoe if you’re looking for a budget-friendly option. But don’t take this lightly because it still features the things in more premium Five Ten cycling shoes, just like its grippy Stealth S1 rubber that provides a high-friction grip.

This flat pedal shoes also have the classic dotty tread pattern for maximum pedal traction, making this one of the best mountain bike shoes for mountain bikers. And you’ll love its mix of leather and textile material coupled with a clipless shoe design similar to most skate shoes.

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Mallet E Lace: Best Clipless MTB Shoes

Mallet E LACE Black/Blue/Black 10.5

The Crankbrothers Mallet E Lace is the best pick for those looking for a clipless pedal shoe that works great for both casual riding and downhill racing.

It features Crankbrothers’ MC1 rubber compound built for easy pedaling and maximum grip on various terrains. These clipless mountain bike shoes come with a ready-to-ride Crankbrothers cleat and shim that goes well with its minimalistic closure system for improved functionality.

This also works great as downhill shoes, thanks to its toe box and velcro straps.

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