Picture of Barefoot Friendly Bike Pedals
IMG_2338 2.JPG

In the summer I try to go without shoes as much as possible. There's something liberating about having your bare feet in direct contact with the ground. There are benefits to being barefoot too; walking around barefoot also stimulates the flexibility and mobility of your foot, and results in a more natural gait (Wikipedia). However, there are some limitations to being barefoot; one of them being how much harder it is to ride a bike, especially with pedals like these. Instead of reincarcerating my feet, I decided to come up with a solution. I found that the pedals are quite comfortable and great for casual rides, the key word being casual. Please be careful!

Thanks to everyone who voted for me in the Wheels Contest and the Summer #mikehacks Contest!

Step 1: What You Need:

Picture of What You Need:

- Two sponges (preferably ones with an abrasive side that will grab your feet)

- Zip Ties or elastics

- A box cutter

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MeneerRuud1 month ago

I love biking barefoot. But, even with my plastic pedals, my feet start to hurt after about 5 km. So I took some old flipflops and cut two 'pedal-sized' pieces. Then removed the sole, made two cuts trough which I pulled some velcro. Then placed the sole back with spray glue.

It's like biking with flipflops, without the flipflops!

M3G (author)  MeneerRuud8 days ago

Wow, that's genius!

LiveCrafts9 days ago

So simple! Never even thought of that! You're a genius!

buck22171 month ago

great idea just don't forget and use your feet as brakes

Brian994 months ago

I am going to do this and I showed my one friend too. I never wear shoes in the summer.

crashzoom5 months ago
Love the idea
darrenhall11 months ago

You clever bugger - I love this instructable - wicked, just wicked.

Have you seen the skateboard with the deep carpet on it - nearly wet myself laughing, then thought " ya know what - that's a bloody great idea ".

Good job.

M3G (author)  darrenhall11 months ago
I haven't seen that, I'll have to look it up!
emilygraceking11 months ago

Congratulations on the contest win! I love how simple and ingenious your idea is.

M3G (author)  emilygraceking11 months ago
Congratulations to yourself as well! Have you recieved the PM with the forms you need to fill out to claim your prize yet?
emilygraceking M3G11 months ago

I haven't received the form yet. I am SUPER excited about going on some watery adventures with the new gear!

M3G (author)  emilygraceking11 months ago
Thank you so much!
ladykalous1 year ago

Great so we are now encouraging kids to ride with out their shoes? Whilst this might seem like a good idea, its really not. Stubbed and scrapped toes, torn up feet when they crash and burn. Just like a helmet to protect their head, their feet should also be protected.

M3G (author)  ladykalous1 year ago
This is true, children should wear protective gear when riding a bike. However, this was intended for older, more responsible people who have some experience riding bikes, not kids.

I tore every ligament in my left foot when I stood up to get more leverage and my bare foot slipped off the pedal. I was already moving so my toes hit the ground first, were pulled backwards, then they touched my heel as the rest of my left leg followed. Then the pedals came back around because my other foot was still firmly on it and all my weight too. The pedal caught the back of my leg and helped to drag my leg under. As I fell forward and to the left my right foot got caught in the spokes of the rear tire and broke three toes.

Being older and more experienced doesn't keep you from injuring yourself because you were too irresponsible to wear shoes like I was.

M3G (author)  rockingrandma1 year ago

I am so sorry to hear this. I wish you all the best and a speedy recovery.

You can't be serious can you?

When you walk barefooted a lot it will probably not be more dangerous than biking with shorts. (when you are always wearing shoes and have delicate feet, you are probably right) It would probably be a fair discussion about what would be more harmful for a child: protecting them less from scuffs and bruises or keeping them from experimenting and finding their boundaries.

Very simplistic, but also very practical! Good Job!

M3G (author)  TrollFaceTheMan1 year ago
Thank you!

No thank you, for sharing :)

ttowngirl1 year ago
All of us hopped on bikes as kids. This is awesome.
M3G (author)  ttowngirl1 year ago


ttowngirl1 year ago
Perfectly simple!
duuude u r genius
M3G (author)  scientist801 year ago
Thanks man!
heibert1 year ago

i agree with barefooting, but anyway we have to think about not only comfort, but safety. equip your bike with chain and chainrings (sorry if i incorrectly call bicycle parts in terminology) with some covers (shields) that prevents you from contact with moving parts, like on this pictures.

M3G (author)  heibert1 year ago
That is a good point, thanks for commenting!

Nice idea - I'll vote as soon as I've posted this.

I wonder if it'd be worth putting the sponges on the OTHER side of the pedals as well - for when you don't notice they've somehow flipped over, so you find out the h a a a rr(gh!)d way..?

M3G (author)  karlpinturr1 year ago
Great suggestion! I did have a bad experience with the underside :)
yespotato1 year ago

My uncle lost 2 toes by doing this... but i still do it XD

asalter21 year ago
This is brilliant
M3G (author)  asalter21 year ago


jpade1 year ago

great idea

M3G (author)  jpade1 year ago
cdstudioNH1 year ago

Brilliant and hilarious... I love it!

M3G (author)  cdstudioNH1 year ago
bricobart1 year ago

Best hack of the week! ;)

M3G (author)  bricobart1 year ago
Thank you!
bergerab1 year ago

So simple but awesome!

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