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Pearl Izumi Sprint Shoes : Initial Thoughts

by Bike Shop Girl

Roughly a month ago I blew threw my favorite pair of do all cycling shoes, Sidi Dominators.  They have had a good life, and just needed a cleat repair so I put them on the rack until they could be repaired and went hunting for a new pair of shoes in the shop.  Originally the new Bontrager shoes were on my want list, but not being released until just recently, they weren’t available at that time.  I opted for the cheapest option for my commute that was 99% of my recent riding.

The option :
Pearl Izumi Sprint Shoes
(womens of course.) MSRP $74.99

This shoe is much different than most of my cycling shoes, I’ll be honest I’ve never worn a “recreational” shoe before.  All my shoes have been high performance road or mountain shoes.  I’ve been rather amazed how easy the transition has been. It is easy to walk in this shoe as it’s not as stiff as a higher end shoe but it does not flex over the pedal either.  Walking on and off my bus, even in the rain.  has never been easier.  The other reason for purchasing these was the fact that Pearl Izumi runs larger than most.  This means I can wear big socks for the cold winter commute and still put a shoe cover over the top if I need.

There are a many pluses to this shoe and for the normal commuter I think the positives will fully out weigh the negatives I have encountered.  These shoes will never replace my dedicated road or mountain shoes but for my commute I think they will be the perfect ticket.  Once I have a month of cold and wet riding I will report back on how they are holding up.

Pro’s:
Great traction, easy to walk in and a good comfortable shoe. I worked a few days in a row in mine and didn’t have too many issues (see con’s.) The reflective stripes that are built in under the mesh on the sides is great.  The fact they are under the mesh makes it so they don’t wear off in normal every day wear like on other shoes I have owned.  If I did spin, which I don’t, these would be great for it.

Con’s:
Heavier than a shoe that is 30 or so dollars more.  Very wide and does not fit well in toe clips.  The SPD mount is very long and not average.  I normally run my cleat about middle of the mount or towards the top. I needed to slam my cleat all the way to the back on these pedals. Not horrible, but something to be aware of.  Support is not good but I am coming off of Sidi’s which are known to have a great support system in them.

 
The Chariot Summer Sale - 2013

6 Responses to “Pearl Izumi Sprint Shoes : Initial Thoughts”

  1. Eric says:

    I have been commuting for 2 weeks or so in the Pearl Izumi X-Alp Seek, which seem to be similar to the Sprint, but more of the ‘mountain’ style. I, too, am used to super-stiff, high-end shoes, so this took some getting used to, but honestly, they are absolutely perfect for commuting. Cleat doesn’t hit the ground when I walk and they feel like a regular pair of shoes off the bike….

  2. Daniel says:

    What has previously run me off from bike shoes is my wide feet. I know Lake offers wide, but haven’t ever found anyone who sells them in store so I could try them on. Sidi’s were out of my price range.

    Are any of the Pearl Izumis available in wide?

  3. Arleigh says:

    At this level they just come in standard whole sizes. I don’t know of their higher end coming in wide.

  4. SurlyBee says:

    This was the first cycling shoe I bought and, not knowing any better, thought it was wonderful (and still do.) I have since gotten a pair of Sidis for long rides, but the Pearls are my errand bike shoes (I’m a housewife so I consider myself a commuter since I do 90% of my errands on my Big Dummy.)

    I have also recently gotten a pair of Keen sandals with the SPD cleat. Love those too. Since most of my riding is within about 8 miles of home, and I’m off and on my bike, the support isn’t as big an issue as being above to grocery shop, run into the dry cleaner’s etc. and still able to walk comfortably.

  5. Zachary says:

    This interesting. I am currently in the market for some shoes with a much stiffer sole that my entry-level Shimanos. Knee problems have plagued me.

    Unfortunately I have size 50 feet and it is difficult to find bicycling shoes in this size. I tried on Lake but they were too wide. I am waiting for some SIDIs to come in (they make them in narrow, which my feet are) but my toes do not exactly feel right in them, so far.

    Would these Pearl Izumi’s be a good alternative? Any other suggestions? I have contemplated custom shoes by they are awfully expense.

    Thanks.

    Zachary
    zfeinstein@harrisinteractive.com

  6. Arleigh says:

    Zachary,

    I don’t believe many Pearl’s come in that size, or any of them actually. Most top out at size 48.

    thanks!

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