Shimano road cleats color difference

Shimano cleats color meaning

Shimano, a well-known manufacturer of cycling components, produces road cleats in different colors to signify their compatibility and characteristics. The main differences in color for Shimano road cleats are typically between yellow, blue, and red cleats, each of which is designed for specific purposes:

  1. Yellow Cleats: Yellow Shimano cleats are known as SPD-SL cleats. They have 6 degrees of float, meaning your foot can move a bit side to side while clipped in. These are often considered the standard cleats and provide a good balance between stability and ease of release. They are commonly used for road cycling.
  2. Blue Cleats: Blue Shimano cleats, also known as SPD-SL cleats, offer 2 degrees of float. They provide a bit less float than the yellow cleats, making them ideal for riders who want a slightly firmer connection to the pedal. This can help with pedaling efficiency, especially for riders who prefer to minimize lateral foot movement.
  3. Red Cleats: Red Shimano cleats are designed for riders who prefer a fixed, no-float connection. These cleats provide zero degrees of float, meaning your foot is securely locked in place with no lateral movement. They are often used by competitive riders who want maximum power transfer and control, at the cost of some comfort during long rides.

The choice of cleat color primarily depends on your preference and riding style. Yellow is the most commonly used and versatile option for most road cyclists. Blue cleats offer a balance between float and stability, and red cleats are best for riders who prioritize a secure connection and minimal lateral movement.


It’s essential to match the cleats with the pedals on your bike because different Shimano pedal models are designed to work with specific cleats. Make sure to check your pedal and cleat compatibility to ensure a secure and safe connection when cycling.

“Remember, choosing the right cleat color isn’t always dependent on your knees and hips flexibility. To ensure your bike is perfectly set up for you, it’s highly recommended to use a professional bike fitting service. This ensures that your bike is tailored to your unique body characteristics and riding needs.”

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