The movement of gravel enthusiasts is growing year after year, and with it the products made specifically for this specific activity. Gravel shoes and bikes are becoming increasingly popular among fans of this new way of biking.
What is gravel biking?
It is a discipline that originated in the United States and is aimed at cycling enthusiasts who set themselves the goal of riding along America's long dirt roads, riding bikes that have certain characteristics: the frame and fork are more comfortable while pedaling than road bikes; the brakes are strictly disc brakes; the wheels are a middle ground between those for road bikes and MTBs, since they take some characteristics of one and the other; the pedals draw inspiration from MTBs while the saddle may depend on the user's tastes, some prefer to focus on performance and others on comfort.
The gravel shoes
One of the most important aspects for the gravel discipline is the use of an ad hoc pair of cycling shoes. Northwave's gravel shoes have very specific characteristics and are designed for this specific activity. The 2 models of Northwave shoes made specifically for this discipline are the Rockit gravel shoe and the Rockster gravel shoe.
How did we create these shoes?
We took some of the best features of road cycling shoes and MTB shoes and combined them, resulting in a unique product. Aspects such as a comfortable fit and a stiff sole allow you to ride long distances on your bike on the one hand and transfer maximum power to the pedals on the other.
The Rockster shoe includes an upper with many small holes to provide the foot with adequate ventilation and thermoregulation. These are two key aspects in long gravel rides. TPU reinforcements on the toe and heel of this gravel shoe increase the shoe's durability, so much so that it is able to withstand even the most demanding conditions. The rubber sole is made to provide optimal grip and extreme reliability both on the pedals and in sections where you need to get off your bike to continue on foot. The closure of the shoe involves the use of classic laces, ideal for all types of cyclists. Northwave's Rockster fits SPD pedals perfectly.
Another gravel shoe model is the Rockit, which involves the use of the Vibram Wolftrack sole, providing excellent traction and allowing for unparalleled grip on dry and wet surfaces. The shape of the shoe is designed to allow for quick on and off, thanks in part to the gussets present. The EVA midsole allows for a lightweight cycling shoe with excellent shock absorption. At the top of the shoe, an elastic band is included that allows retention of the laces. At the toe of the shoe is a TPU reinforcement to prevent wear and tear on the shoe. Northwave's Rockit can be used with SPD pedals and also with flat pedals, thanks to the Vibram sole. This allows this shoe model to be used for walking as well.
Other Northwave shoes suitable for gravel are:
- Rebel 3 available in different colors: green, yellow, gray and blue. The SLW3 double rotor and carbon insert in the pedal area ensure top-notch performance.
- Origin Plus 2 available in black, gray, yellow and green. The SLW3 rotor and strap allow for an adjustable shoe closure, ensuring optimal comfort. Speedlight 3D outsole with 10.0 stiffness index allows for high-level performance.
- Origin 2 available for purchase in black, red or yellow. The 3-strap closure is ideal for those starting out in the gravel world. Comfort and excellent breathability allow you to enjoy your bike rides to the fullest.
- Origin 2 Women's, available in purple. This is a gravel shoe for women, designed for her and with a unique coloring. This does not detract from the fact that all other shoes in the Northwave collection can also be used by women.
Within northwave.com, you can also find some outlet cycling shoes discounted by 20/30% such as, for example, the Rebel 2 and the special edition Rockster for Zydeco.