How to safely start pedaling when feet don't touch ground?

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
Yesterday I tested an Easy Motion EVO bike, a model that fits me well except in one area: my feet don't touch the ground, and even with the seat in the lowest position I'm about an inch or 2 short, and I have to get off the seat immediately upon stopping. This is typical for me on every adult bike, even the small sizes, as I'm only 5'0".

Here's the problem: I have to start pedaling while not on the seat, then push myself up and onto the seat in the same move to get properly situated. With a PAS even in the lowest mode, I noticed the bike started taking off right away because the torque sensor kicked in with that first downward stroke of the pedal, which would be fine if I was already on the seat, but since I'm not during that first down-stroke, I felt like the bike was taking off without me.

What I ended up doing was turning PAS off altogether until I got going and onto the seat, but it made me think about this as I expect to be doing urban riding and dealing with stop 'n go will be something I have to contend with.

What's the best strategy to manage this issue?
 
Last edited:

Shea N Encinitas

Active Member
Sounds like you have already found the best strategy, I suppose you might also be able to push off with one foot while the other is on the pedal at the bottom of the stroke, therefore not triggering the PAS right away. -S
 

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
That could work, as long as my leg doesn't rub against the pedal that's in the high position as I'm attempting to do a mini-version of Fred Flintstone starting his vehicle! Being short sucks, in case anyone was wondering.
 

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
JayVee,

I was totally joking! I would never wear such shoes, unless I was going to a costume party where "bad 70's platform shoes" were the thing to wear! Sneakers with a 1" heel might work.

Or...

I'm going to have to not use PAS until I'm already going and just rely on no assistance for the first couple of strokes and then engage the throttle to get me going at stop lights and then switch PAS on.
 

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
I've been using this technique since I'm unable to put one foot out to touch the ground at all (courtesy of Sheldon Brown)

 

eDean

Active Member
Turning the pedals so you can get them spinning like in your video works as long as you are in a low enough gear. On my Neo Jet I find that the assist is not that overwhelming when coming from a stop and it it does catch you off guard you can always pull the brakes and cut out the motor. This is was much bigger issue when I had a bike without torque sensor, had some close calls and that is in part why I have a Jet. Often, I stop near a curve or pole and that allows me to put a foot on the ground and stay on the seat, number on option. Since you have a throttle, you can use that as well to get going as long as you turn off the pedal assist especially if you stopped in a high gear.
 

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
Turning the pedals so you can get them spinning like in your video works as long as you are in a low enough gear. On my Neo Jet I find that the assist is not that overwhelming when coming from a stop and it it does catch you off guard you can always pull the brakes and cut out the motor. This is was much bigger issue when I had a bike without torque sensor, had some close calls and that is in part why I have a Jet. Often, I stop near a curve or pole and that allows me to put a foot on the ground and stay on the seat, number on option. Since you have a throttle, you can use that as well to get going as long as you turn off the pedal assist especially if you stopped in a high gear.
Well I don't have anything right now as I don't yet own an eBike. However, on the one I'm considering (the 2015 EVO Street model) you can't engage the throttle at all when PAS is on. It's either PAS or Throttle. Unfortunately, I won't always have a way to stop at a curb or near a pole, and that doesn't concern me as much as getting going because the torque action of stepping down on the pedal immediately engages pedal assist even in the lowest setting if it's on, so one needs to be balanced and get butt planted on seat quickly. I'm sure it's one of those things that must be practiced to get the timing right.
 

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
The bike I'm strongly considering purchasing, the EVO Street, is step thru model. The frame (18in) size only comes in "medium" and it has 26" wheels. Step-thru doesn't do a thing to put my feet on the ground while on the seat, even with the seat at its lowest level. As I said in my first post on this thread, my feet are still an inch or 2 from my toes touching the ground, with the seat in its lowest position, so I have to come to a stop and get my butt off the seat to put a foot down, just like I do on my regular hybrid non ebike.

My only other option is to find a bike with 24" tires (like the Pedego Step Thru Interceptor 24"), though between the 2 bikes, I happen to really prefer the look and features of the Easy Motion EVO. I will not consider a bike with 20" tires. That's not my thing.

 

eDean

Active Member
Not having your feet touch the ground is really not a big issue once you are used to it. You will automatically sip off the seat to stabilize yourself. I have a well ridden Neo Jet and it has been flawless other than a rear flat which requires some tools to change. That Evo Street looks great.
 

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
I'm not worried about stopping the bike, and for some reason people have gotten off track on what my concern is about.

My only concern is how to get the bike started and not have the bike get away from me due to the surge from PAS, even when it's in the lowest level of assist, and my needing to balance myself and get my butt on that seat. The one thing I did try during my test ride was turning off PAS altogether and start by pedaling with no assistance. Yes, it works, but it's very slow due to the weight of the bike.

(and I don't yet have an eBike...I'm only doing a test ride now).
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
I'm not worried about stopping the bike, and for some reason people have gotten off track on what my concern is about.

My only concern is how to get the bike started and not have the bike get away from me due to the surge from PAS, even when it's in the lowest level of assist, and my needing to balance myself and get my butt on that seat. The one thing I did try during my test ride was turning off PAS altogether and start by pedaling with no assistance. Yes, it works, but it's very slow due to the weight of the bike.

(and I don't yet have an eBike...I'm only doing a test ride now).
No problem.
Just hold the brakes gently until you're seated, it will be very much under control and PAS won't kick in.

on a lighter note, PowerMe asks a question and everyone jumps in to answer. Mike Leroy has been asking thousands of questions but no one bothers :) :). Stop gender discrimination :D hehe

Gender discrimination.jpg
 

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
So hold the brakes in gently AND get the bike going by pushing down on the pedal with my foot to start the pedal rotation? Remember, I'm having to do this while not seated on the bike, as I'm too short to sit on the bike and touch the ground, so I have to start the bike moving forward from standing over the bike frame, just like in that video I posted upstream.

Can both maneuvers be done simultaneously?

LOL @ the Facebook meme. My personal Facebook experience happens to mirror the 'male profile.'
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
So hold the brakes in gently AND get the bike going by pushing down on the pedal with my foot to start the pedal rotation? Remember, I'm having to do this while not seated on the bike, as I'm too short to sit on the bike and touch the ground, so I have to start the bike moving forward from standing over the bike frame, just like in that video I posted upstream.

Can both maneuvers be done simultaneously?

LOL @ the Facebook meme. My personal Facebook experience happens to mirror the 'male profile.'
Yes, that's the beauty of hydraulic brakes. The motor cuts out if you gently press the lever but the calipers won't engage the rotor strongly enough to stop the bike. This way, you still keep moving without motor kicking in and once you're firmly seated, you can release the brakes.
I think you just need a longer (45 min) test ride to grasp the nuances. It's very simple actually.
 

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
Good to know!


FYI, the bike I was able to test (not the one I want to buy, but a different model, as the one I want wasn't in stock) did not have hydraulic brakes, only V-pull brakes. So, I won't be able to test out the actual bike I do want as there is no dealer near where I live and I'm only visiting FL for another 2 days.
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
Good to know!


FYI, the bike I was able to test (not the one I want to buy, but a different model, as the one I want wasn't in stock) did not have hydraulic brakes, only V-pull brakes. So, I won't be able to test out the actual bike I do want as there is no dealer near where I live and I'm only visiting FL for another 2 days.
No worries. All EM bikes come with integrated motor cut off.
 

wa5

Well-Known Member
on a lighter note, PowerMe asks a question and everyone jumps in to answer. Mike Leroy has been asking thousands of questions but no one bothers :) :). Stop gender discrimination :D hehe

View attachment 2303

LOL, I was actually a bit hesitant to mention a step through frame because some blokes might take offence. It never actually occurred to me that Power Me wasn't a man... now that I look at the avatar, not to many blokes have pictures of cats... goes to show just how much notice I take.....
 

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
Excellent news, thanks!

Now if only the weather would get better in Raleigh. They are due for up to 6 inches of snow tonight and the ice from last week hadn't totally cleared from my shaded lot. As a "fair weather bike rider" I'm not going out to ride when temps dip below 50 and even then I'd have to think about it. (Although I bet I'll change my mind once I have an eBike and get the itch everyone gets).