Catalyst Pedals by Pedaling Innovations




Collections: Parts and Upgrades

Product type: Parts and Upgrade

Vendor: Borealis Bikes Canada

Tags: catalyst, innovation, pedal


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Get the pedals that will instantly improve your power, stability and comfort!

Design Highlights

Extruded and Machined using our exclusive mold using 6061 Aluminum with T6 Heat Treatment

Manufactured by VP Components using parts and materials with a proven track record for durability and quality

Designed to connect the front and back ends of arch of the foot, it is the longest platform for your foot on the market

Dual sealed bearings and DU Bushing internals

Heat treated Cr-Mo Spindle that is compatible with a standard 15mm wrench or 6mm allen

18 pins per side strategically placed to maximize the new, optimized foot position possible with this design

Shipped with longer (8mm) replacement grub screws to swap out for extra traction

Available in 4 anodized colors: Black, Blue, Red and Grey

Pedal Stats


5.6” / 143 mm


3.75”/ 95 mm


.6”/ 16 mm


505 grams per pair


The Catalyst Pedals Are Guaranteed To Be The Best Performing, Most Comfortable Bike Pedals Ever….No Matter What Type of Riding You Do.

Our Patented Design gives you:
1) More Power
2) Better Efficiency
3) Less Pain

The Story Behind The Catalyst Pedal…
A few years ago I was sitting on the trail pissed off at the lack of support I was getting from my shoes and pedals.

Like a lot of you, I constantly had to deal with the compromises that came between a stiff soled shoe for performance and a pliable soled shoe for comfort. As a flat pedal rider I also dealt with the constant adjustments I felt like I had to make to get my foot just right on the pedal and how easily it could get knocked out of that position.

While I sat there I wondered to myself why don’t I need a stiff soled shoe to squat or deadlift in the gym? As a strength coach I often worked out barefoot or with minimalist shoes and encouraged clients to train the same way.
I had lifted hundreds of pounds in bare feet – putting them under far more stress than they ever saw on the bike – so I knew that the foot was a naturally strong and stable platform. But for some reason my feet turned into an unstable, unbalanced mess on the bike.

And suddenly it hit me – when lifting in the gym the ground supports both ends of the arch of my foot. The arch is one of the strongest forms in nature but only if it is supported on both ends.

Once you support both ends of the arch the foot is strong, stable and balanced. This is why you don’t need stiff soled shoes in the gym and good coaches will actually tell you not to come up on your toes. Pushing through the ball of the foot in the gym destabilizes the arch of the foot and make it harder to recruit the hips, which are the strongest muscles in the lower body.

How It Works...
To accomplish this the Catalyst Pedal features a full 5 inches/ 128 mm of contact space for your foot. This allows the pedal body to support both the ball of the foot and the heel while also resulting in a true mid-foot placement of the axle.

However, the Catalyst Pedal isn’t any wider than a normal flat pedal – 3.75 inches/ 95 mm to be exact. This means that it disappears under your foot and doesn’t expose any extra pedal body to rock strikes. This also means that the Catalyst Pedal is actually smaller underfoot than any other “oversized” flat pedal.

In order to get the most out of your Catalyst Pedals you just need to do one simple thing…
Make sure that axle is in the middle of your arch.
On the Catalyst Pedal this foot position will make sure that you are able to support both ends of your arch. No other pedal on the market is long enough to accomplish this, which is what makes the Catalyst Pedal so effective.

With the ball of the foot on the pedal you are forced to push forward – literally trying to kick your foot off of the pedal as you pedal. 
But when you move the foot forward it balances the forces going into the pedal. Now you can drive down into a strong, stable platform without having to fight those forward forces.

This foot placement improves your pedaling in 3 ways:
By supporting both ends of the arch of the foot you naturally support the arch itself, which gets rid of flex in the arch

An arch that is only supported on one side is weak and flexible while one that is supported on both sides is strong and stable. By supporting the arch with the pedal body itself you get rid of the foot flex you usually need stiff soled shoes for. This improves power transfer since the pedal body itself is far stiffer than even the stiffest soled shoes, which means every bit of power your legs produce go straight into the crank arms.
The mid-foot placement of the axle balances the foot, which takes stress off of the ankle joint and allows for better recruitment of the hips. 

The hips have also been shown to be the major muscles used when pedaling, not your quads (ELMER, S. J., P. R. BARRATT, T. KORFF, and J. C. MARTIN. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise 2011). The mid-foot position has also been shown to shift the stress from the ankles to the hips (J.R. Van Sickle Jr, M.L Hull/ Journal of Biomechanics 2007). This means the mid-foot position allows your body to better recruit the main muscles powering the pedal stroke.
Comfort & Stability
The more balanced foot position achieved from this pedal design will result in a more balanced application of force into the pedals. 

Instead of pushing forward into the pedal through the ball of the foot you will push straight down through the entire foot. This will result in less stress on the feet since you aren’t pushing them into the toe box of your shoes with every pedal stroke, plus your feet won’t push over the top and come off during hard sprints on the trail.

Now you can let your foot move naturally on the pedal with the same type of articulation and support it was designed to thrive on. The Catalyst Pedal is the only pedal in the world that looks first at how the foot and lower leg optimally move and then applies that insight to the bike.


The Science

The Catalyst Pedal’s unique design is based on several scientific studies.

J.R. Van Sickle Jr, M.L Hull/ Journal of Biomechanics 2007 – This study showed no difference in power or economy between pushing through the ball of the foot and the mid-foot pedal position. They thought that there would be a decrease in those factors since you couldn’t use the ankles for leverage and push with them. However, this wasn’t the case and they found that pushing through the ball of the foot wasn’t “better” or the optimal way to apply power into the pedals. In fact, they also found that the mid-foot position took stress off of the calf and Achilles tendon, placing it on the hips.

ELMER, S. J., P. R. BARRATT, T. KORFF, and J. C. MARTIN. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise 2011 – This study found that the hips (glutes and hamstrings acting to extend the hip joint) were the major drivers of the pedal stroke at all intensity levels. This means that the quads are never the major driver of the pedal stroke.

Korff (et al. Med Sci Sports Exerc 2007; 39:991-995) and Mornieux (et al. Int J Sports Med 2008; 29:817-822) Cycling Efficiency Studies – These two studies showed that pulling up on the backstroke produces less power and burns more energy than simply driving hard on the downstroke and letting the trail leg come up just hard enough to get ready for the next hard downstroke push. Everything that I have seen, including EMG readings and anecdotal evidence, show that there is little to no power created on the backstroke and when you try to increase power by pulling up you decrease the power and efficiency of the whole pedal stroke.

Collectively, these studies have shown that:

1 – The mid-foot position also allows for better recruitment of the hips.

2 – The hips are the major muscles used in the pedal stroke.

3 – There is no need to pull up on the backstroke.

So, if your hips are the major drivers of the pedal stroke and the mid-foot position allows you to better recruit the hips then it would seem that the science favors a pedal that optimizes this foot position and hip recruitment. And since you don’t need to pull up on the back of the pedal stoke then you don’t “need” to be attached to your pedals.

You might also be wondering why you’ve never heard of these studies. Well, there is a lot of money and a lot of egos tied up in the traditional view of the pedal stroke. But the truth is out there if you look. And when you do you will see that what we’ve been told about the pedal stroke doesn’t add up in the face of the actual data.

Oh, and in case you think I am cherry picking studies and not including some that contradict this view of the pedal stroke I can assure you that is not the case. I have looked for the studies and have an open invitation for people to share studies with me and all I keep finding are things that back up what I’m saying. If you know of anything I am leaving out please let me know and I will include it, my goal is to find the truth and not propagandize an agenda.

As you can see the Catalyst Pedal is based on real science, not theories and marketing hype.

How many other pedals can make that same claim?


Industry Reviews of the Catalyst Pedal

“If you’re looking to upgrade your flat pedals or are keen to enter the world of flats for the first time, then you should seriously check out the Catalyst pedal. With the largest platform on the market that provides full arch support giving you improved power to the cranks, stability, balance and pedalling efficiency all-round. These are the Daddy of flat pedals!”

Read on Tyres and Soles

“In June of 2016 I did a “first impressions” video on my thoughts of the Catalyst Pedal by Pedaling Innovations. At the time I was a bit skeptical about some of the claims behind these pedals but after spending a considerable amount of time riding on them in a few different disciples (XC, AM, and DH) I’m convinced that they are the real deal.”

Watch on YouTube

“The Catalyst changed my view on flat pedals by making it feel as if I had more power, better balance, and the ability to maintain my form for longer periods of time during sustained physical efforts. If I can improve my riding by simply changing my pedals, I’ll take it. And don’t forget that there is a 30-day money back guarantee, which makes it even easier to try a pair and see if they work for you.”

Read on

Dirt Rag

“After spending a good amount of time with the Catalyst pedals, I think there is something to this madness. Maybe it’s just the placebo effect, but I’m pretty confident it’s more than that.”

Read on Dirt Rag

Gear Chase

“My overall take on the Pedaling Innovation Catalyst pedals is that they offer more control over traditional flat pedals….The biggest benefit to the Catalyst pedal is that it helped reduce my knee pain…”

Read on

Gear Institute

“The logic certainly makes sense. And while there will no doubt be those who will debate the science behind the design, once you put these pedals on your bike, it’s pretty hard to argue with the results. While I completely acknowledge the possibility of the placebo effect, there was no denying the difference in my riding from the moment I started using the Catalyst pedals.

It wasn’t just that I felt like I had more power to get over especially technical elements on tough ascents, I also had a more stable base that resulted in significantly more control through berms and on rocky descents. Did my feet come off the pedals? Yes. But not nearly as much as they did with traditional flat pedals. And, the more time I spent on the pedals, the less that happened as well.”

Read on Gear Institute

Chris Centeno, M.D. Blog Post

“Biomechanically, it all makes sense to me…It’s one of those simple ideas that when you hear about it, you say to yourself, “Oh, that’s obvious””

Read Blog Post

Natural Foot Gear

“All things considered, I think Catalyst Pedals represent the best option for maximizing the cycling experience while preserving natural foot health. They help improve pedaling efficiency, build a more powerful pedal stroke, improve foot comfort and stability, and reduce wear and tear on the lower body joints. Using Catalyst Pedals is also fun and liberating. And with a 30-day money back guarantee, you can put them to the test and compare them side by side with your other pedals before committing to them for good. Catalyst Pedals are a true cycling innovation and a product that you can use to enjoy a long and enjoyable cycling career.”

Read on Natural Foot Gear

Video Review – Natural Foot Health Benefits

Video Review – Cycling Benefits

“Are they the “Best pedal. period!”? I’m sold. Do yourself a favour and try them for yourself.”

Read on

Roman Rusinov

“Catalyst’s do make you pedal more efficient and the added comfort and stability is a great bonus as well. They are just fun, you don’t really have to care where you place your foot after slashing a berm with your foot out.

You are glued to the bike, you feel it differently, it’s more connected. Pumping the bike becomes much easier, jumps and landings feel more smooth. Less foot fatigue.

You might even make some friends on the trail if they ride the same pedal, it’s like an exclusive club of sort, it happened to me a few times.”

Read the Rest of the Review

Schralp: Explore Outdoors

“Despite the increase in size (and thus weight), these pedals have noticeably improved my riding. I feel more balance, more in control, and more confident both on descents and when cornering. I feel I am incorporating more leg muscles than previous with less low back pain during climbing.

One of the absolutely terrific benefits I find is that my foot goes naturally in the correct position on these pedals. The large platform also provides a big margin for error for foot placement. This allows for more consistent power delivery. Maybe there is some form of the placebo effect here, but my biking quantifying apps (Garmin Connect, Strava) highlight the improvements I’ve made since using them.”

Read the Rest of the Review

Regular Guy Mountain Biking

“I love these things. They do exactly what they say they are going to do.”

Watch on YouTube

“The difference was immediately noticeable. Putting all of my weight on the Catalyst pedals felt just like standing a wood floor. By comparison, the combination of flexible shoes and conventional pedals felt like I was wrapping my feet around the rungs of a ladder.”

Read the Rest of the Review

Bikepacking With A Family

“The power difference was amazing. Really amazing. I think in the first week I got eight different Strava PB times, I found myself climbing hills up one or two gears, and on one hill climb even broke a chain.

I like the ankle action they give, and most importantly my knee pain is absolutely gone! In fact, I went back to another bike with normal flats, and with a 20km ride, my knee pain came back. For me, these pedals really work!”

Read the Rest of the Review

“I found that my feet were less achy on longer gravel grinds…Having extra surface area to land a foot was appreciated in instances where terrain became a little sketchier…”

Read the Rest of the Review

The Catalyst Pedals by Pedaling Innovations is the product you didn't think you need, but once you have it, something you won't want to live without.

Inventory Last Updated: Mar 30, 2020