By Amy Schlinger
This month, Shimano is launching the fourth shoe in their indoor cycling shoe lineup, the IC2. This lightweight shoe combines the top features of the best-selling IC1 shoe, like breathability, ventilation, stability, and gender neutrality, with the popular rubber outsole of the IC5 shoe to create a shoe that's perfect for riding in your living room—but will also change the rental shoe game when studios reopen this spring.
Everything You Need to Know About The IC2 Shoe
It was originally created for studios to rent out to riders—but it’s perfect for at-home riding, too.
Both the IC1 and the IC2 were developed to provide a solution to a market request for a comfortable cycling shoe that was easier to walk in. If you’ve ever been to a Spin class and rented shoes, you know just how difficult it can be to walk from the locker room to the studio with Delta clips on the bottom of your shoes. And while the IC1 shoe can still have a 3-hole cleat attached to it, the newest IC2 is an SPD 2-hole cleat compatible shoe, meaning the cleat will be smaller, and the area where the cleat attaches to the shoe is receded, so you won’t feel it as you walk on normal ground. Sounds pretty ideal, right? Yes, it’s perfect to keep studio floors from getting wrecked, but it’s also perfect to keep your hardwood floor or tile at home safe as well. Plus, at home, you can easily jump from the bike into a strength workout without having to change shoes!
You’ll feel extremely stable and balanced in the shoe.
Not only will the receded cleat make walking so much simpler, but the long and sturdy rubber outsole will provide superior stability like you’ve never had in a cycling shoe before. Gone are the days of having to basically hobble around on your heels—this set up allows you not only to walk balanced, but you can also move around your house (or eventually a studio) knowing you’re not causing any harm to the floor. “The way some people have described the IC2 versus the IC1 isn’t that it’s necessarily more comfortable, they just feel more confident walking and riding in it,” says Jessie Gascon, Shimano’s lifestyle gear product manager.
The stability also plays a key role when you’re on the bike, too. “I love the fact the sole is solid and stable, like a cycling shoe should be, yet still very easy to walk around the gym and cycling studio,” says Pam L Benchley, 53, master instructor with Stages Indoor Cycling, in Dunkirk, NY, and one of the individuals chosen to test our the IC2 shoes ahead of launch. “It’s better than any other brand of cycling shoe that I’ve tried.”
It’s extremely comfortable and breathable.
This new shoe was built with the same mesh, one-piece-of-fabric upper construction (read: no chaffing or hot spots!) as the IC1, and with the same comfy, slip-on design, too, which makes for easy on and off. “Once you slip it on, I like that the top gives almost a sock-like fit feeling,” says Benchley. A single strap crosses over the foot for an even more secure fit. And while the perforated upper allows for ample air flow, unlike the IC1, the IC2 doesn’t have an intake or exhaust. “The structure is completely different because of the full-length rubber outsole,” explains Gascon. “It’s also just a tiny bit heavier because of the sole, but visually it looks the same, and the mesh upper is just as breathable.”
It’s SPD cleats are compatible with most bikes.
Despite the Peloton bike, SPD pedals are compatible with almost every other Spin bike, including the SoulCycle bike, the NordicTrack bike, Stages bikes, as well as many others. Plus, if you ride your outdoor bike indoors on a trainer, and already have SPD pedals on it, you’ll be all set and ready to go with the IC2.