While it's more than 100 years old, the bicycle has undergone a lot of changes since its inception. The sizes of the tires have changed, the material it's made from has altered, and the pedals have changed their design and materials over the years.
A pedal is where the rider pushes down with his foot to propel a bicycle. The pedal turns a crank and transfers energy to the drive chain, which turns the wheels, which makes the bike move. The pedals are essentially where the energy comes from to propel the bike.
Like most bicycles, common pedals are made of aluminum or low-grade steel. The pedals of a bike are usually made of the same material as the frame.
Racing bikes and heavy-duty trick bikes might have pedals made of sterner materials. Titanium, high-carbon fiber and very high-grade aluminum also are used. Because these bikes are performance machines and are under greater stress, they need more durable pedals.
It's also common for pedals to be covered in rubber or plastic that's ridged for grip. This serves the dual purpose of protecting the metal against the elements and providing a better grip for the foot of the rider on the pedal.
When choosing a set of bicycle pedals, keep in mind what the bike will be ridden for. Casual riders won't need to spend the extra money on high-grade materials, but serious competitors might find their performances hindered by lower-quality components.
Article Written By Neal Litherland
Neal Litherland has a bachelor's degree in criminal justice from Indiana University, though he's chosen to pursue his passion for writing rather than seeking a career in law since 2008. A professional writer for his entire literary career, he's willing to tackle any project, no matter the variety of style.