Women’s Mountain Bike Shoes for Flat Pedals

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With mountain biking there are two types of shoes available on the market: Clipless which have cleats and flat, which do not have cleats. Cleats are groves in the sole of the mountain bike shoe that clip to the pedal.

In this article we are specifically going to look at women’s mountain bike shoes for flat pedals. Flat mountain bike shoes are great for beginners and anyone who is not taking mountain bike ridging too seriously – basically if you are not competing in races.

Mountain bike shoes for flat pedals give the rider a lot more freedom to release your feet quickly. You won’t get the pedalling efficiency of a clipless, but dedicated mountain bike shoes give you excellent pedal grip.

Best women’s mountain bike shoes for flat pedals 2019

Here at Sauserwind we love all things Five Ten, which are currently ‘on trend’ in the mountain bike community – they also look cool as regular sneakers.

Five Ten Women’s Freerider Mountain Bike Shoe [Editor’s Choice]

Five Ten Women's Freerider Bike Shoe, Black/Berry, 8.5 M US
89 Reviews
Five Ten Women's Freerider Bike Shoe, Black/Berry, 8.5 M US
  • This BMX-inspired shoe is designed to make the transition from downhill to bike park
  • Sticky STEALTH S1 Rubber outsole keeps your pedals where you need them with excellent cushioning and shock absorbing properties
  • Nubuck and mesh upper
  • Breathable mesh lining

Like all five ten shoes, these come with the sticky STEALTH S1 rubbers soles which provide awesome grip on the pedals. If your wet soles have ever slipped of the the pedal in the rain, you know how painful it can be if your shin hits the pedal.  Five Ten use this sole technology in their climbing shoes so you know its going to be good.

Unfortunately, these only come in the black but with three bright sole and logo colors purple, berry and vivid berry.

Giro Riddance Woemen’s Mountain Bike Shoe

Giro Riddance W Womens Downhill Cycling Shoe − 35, Dark Shadow/Berry (2020)
72 Reviews
Giro Riddance W Womens Downhill Cycling Shoe − 35, Dark Shadow/Berry (2020)
  • CONFIDENCE THAT STICKS WITH YOU: The ideal flat pedal women’s mountain bike shoe for rowdy descending and powerful pedaling on your favorite trails
  • COMFORTABLE FEEL WITH DURABILITY: Water-resistant, breathable microfiber upper with Rock Print for abrasion resistance, plus a rubber-reinforced toe cap and heel for excellent durability
  • ULTIMATE FIT ADJUSTMENT: Laces offer unrivaled fit adjustment, hold a knot securely and are the lightest closure system available
  • POWERFUL PEDALING AND CONFIDENT FOOTING: A full-length molded Vibram MegaGrip rubber high-traction lugged outsole for grip and durability
  • COMFORTABLE SUPPORT AND FLAT PEDAL COMPATIBLE: Includes molded EVA footbed with medium arch support and optimized EVA midsole for enhanced cushioning. Works with all flat pedals. Not compatible with clip-in pedals

These look very similar to the Five Ten Women’s Freerider mountain bike shoes, in fact the design could have been pinched by Giro. Giro are a well known cycling brand that produce a range of accessories, cycling helmets being their main products.

Giro womens flat mtb shoes

These mountain bike shoes have Giros’s ‘Vibrum Megagrip’ sole which have rubber pentagon studs on the sole.

For a women’s mountain bike flat pedal shoe, Giro have not spent much thought on their color schemes available. Their two colors available are dark shadow/berry and Glacier

Pearl iZUMi Women’s W X-ALP Launch MTB Shoe

PEARL iZUMi Women's X-ALP Launch, Smoked Pearl/Monument, 38.0
8 Reviews
PEARL iZUMi Women's X-ALP Launch, Smoked Pearl/Monument, 38.0
  • Bonded Seamless Upper delivers lightweight, durable riding performance
  • Traditional lace closure for a precise fit and all day comfort
  • Smooth, siped rubber outsole design with Vibram MegaGrip compound in pedal zone offers instant pedal pin engagement
  • Vibram dual density zonal outsole compounds deliver the perfect blend of exceptional grip, traction and durability
  • Open, chevron shaped lugs with Vibram Megagrip compound in toe and heel areas provide long lasting traction in all conditions

These dedicated women’s mountain bike shoes for flat pedals have excellent grip and pedal feel. Pearl have also added reinforced toe caps in the latest products to offer maximum protection if you have an accident.

Like most mountain bike shoes designed for women, the color schemes are very mescaline but we like the smoked pearl/monument scheme best.

>> Read also our guide to the 3 best women’s mountain bikes under US$500

Do you really need dedicated mountain bike brand shoe?

We say NO! As long as they have adequate grip any decent sneaker will do the job. We have scoured the internet for the latest sneaker fashions for women and found a couple that would be suitable for mountain bike riding.

Our two main choices come from Cosmo’s 2019 women’s sneaker brand list.

Nike Air Max 97

These would make perfect mountain bike shoes for flat pedals, due to excellent grip. They also have hidden laces to stop them getting caught up in stuff and a great color scheme to suit any mountain biking outfits.

Best color choice: Black/white/habanero red

Nike Air Max 97 Black/white/habanero red perfect as a flat mountain bike shoes

Saucony Originals Women’s Jazz Sneaker

Saucony Women's Jazz Original, Black/Silver, 8 M US
1,177 Reviews
Saucony Women's Jazz Original, Black/Silver, 8 M US
  • Neutral cushioning with soft mesh upper

 

These women’s sneakers are hugely popular, the Amazon page alone has 1300+ reviews. Along with being ‘on trend’, they are perfect for mountain bike riding with a good grippy sole, breathable uppers and a great range of colors.

We love the the dark grey & orange.

Women’s Mountain Bike Flat Shoes: Buying Consideration

Color

Though color and style is likely to be most womens’ main buying decision factor, choose a color scheme that is practical for mountain biking! White/Pink combination will get filthy if you hit some muddy trails, especially during the wetter parts of the riding season.

Go for darker colors but with a flash of color that matches your cycling outfit.

Comfort

Though you are not going to be walking far, you still need a pair of mountain bike shoes that feel nice to wear and allow your feet to breathe. Any shoe with a plastic upper is going to make your feet sweat.

Value

You want a pair of mountain bike shoes that are going to last the test of time with wear and tear. All the shoes reviewed above are very well made and from reputable brands.

Overall: The Best Women’s Mountain Bike Shoe for Flat Pedals?

We have to go with the Five Tens, just because we love the brand so much and the pedal grip is second to none.

Five Ten Women's Freerider Bike Shoe, Black/Berry, 8.5 M US
89 Reviews
Five Ten Women's Freerider Bike Shoe, Black/Berry, 8.5 M US
  • This BMX-inspired shoe is designed to make the transition from downhill to bike park
  • Sticky STEALTH S1 Rubber outsole keeps your pedals where you need them with excellent cushioning and shock absorbing properties
  • Nubuck and mesh upper
  • Breathable mesh lining