Teva Pivot Mountain Bike Shoe Review
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The Teva Pivot mountain bike shoe is leading the industry as all-mountain riding and enduro style racing becomes more prevalent in the mountain biking world. Riders are demanding gear that performs well whether you’re cranking up a climb, ripping a decent, hike-a-biking to the goods, or sending it off jumps and drops. Until recently, there haven’t been a lot of options available for uphill and downhill performance all in one shoe.
The Teva Pivot bike shoes are a flat shoe that is clipless compatible made for all-mountain riding. While most flats tend to be pretty hefty, the Pivot is designed to be much lighter. The size 5.5s I tested were well under a pound before they were caked with dirt. The midsole isn’t as burly as in most flats which allows for a little more flex in the shoe – a big bonus for the hike-a-bikes, but it is still stiff enough for pedaling efficiency. Now, I’m not saying that the Teva Pivot is as stiff and efficient or as light as a true cross-country specific mountain bike shoe, but that’s why it is an all-mountain shoe not a cross-country race shoe. When pedaling up long, steep, rocky climbs in Colorado’s front range, I didn’t notice the additional heft at all, but I certainly welcomed the ability to walk with confidence up or down those rocky sections that tripped me up and forced me off my pedals and on to my feet. The Spider 365 rubber outsole is sturdy, provides excellent traction on all different surfaces and provides ample protection from rocks while hiking.
The first few times out with these shoes, I did notice the thinned down midsole particularly when lift-served downhilling. I felt a hot spot developing where the cleat was, but I think that was due to a couple factors – I do not think I had the cleat in the correct position because once I made a couple adjustments the problem was significantly alleviated. In addition, the descents were long and rough demanding that I stand with out a lot of pedaling for the majority of them. On cross-country rides where I was mixing standing and sitting, I did not have any problems with hot spots developing.
The uppers on the Teva Pivot mountain bike shoes are multi-layer nylon and mesh material with some added leather-like sections for added durability and sturdiness. The mesh allowed them to breathe fairly well, but the black color and layers did get a touch warm on 90-plus degree days, but at that point anything would have been hot! The heels feature an extra rigid heel support system that locked my heals in place no matter how much I moved my feet around on the pedals or while walking. The uppers are built like a basic “skate” shoe or basic sneaker which also made them very comfortable, even with cleats, for kicking around in the parking lot post-ride or walking around to take in the views during high country rides or during lunch breaks on resort days.
The Teva Pivot mountain bike shoes also feature a secure closure system to keep your feet snug and protect you from snagging a loose lace while pedaling. They have a standard lace, but also feature a broad piece of velcro across the top of the laces to help cinch them closed and provide a touch more stability around the midfoot.
One feature of the Teva Pivot mountain bike shoes that I haven’t seen before is a system that allows you to screw the cleats in from the inside rather than the standard bottom up attachment (you can still install them bottom up if you choose). I found it a bit cumbersome to screw the cleats in from the inside, but I can see this being a huge benefit when I need to swap out the cleats because the screws won’t be beat up from wear and tear or caked with dirt. In addition, they’re compatible with all standard 2-bolt pedal systems and the cleats fit really well into the sole of the shoe without any shimming or trimming.
While the Teva Pivot mountain bike shoes are technically men’s shoes, they make them in sizes 4 and up to accommodate women’s and kids sizing. They recommend that women order two sizes smaller than their normal shoe size an this recommendation seemed very accurate.
Overall, I am sold on the Teva Pivot mountain bike shoes and don’t consider anything else when heading out for a long high-country ride, a day of lift-served riding, or rides that may include a decent amount of time on my feet. These shoes perform well whether I’m gunning to beat my time up a local ride or barreling through rock gardens at the resorts. For more info on the Pivot mountain bike shoes and other Teva footwear visit www.teva.com.