Footpegs, Floorboards and Highway Pegs - What's the Difference?
Footpegs are the long cylinders on which you see riders resting the balls of their feet. Floorboards are just what they sound like - wide flat platforms on which the entire foot can be placed.
Foot pegs are usually textured to provide a gripping surface. They're minimalistic, so when you corner they're less likely to scrape. Aggressive riders typically prefer them.
Floorboards, on the other hand, can be more comfortable for long trips because they give more room for riders to shift their feet around, so they're preferred by distance riders. They look good on bigger Harleys®, and make sense for riders taking their cruiser, touring bike or trike on the road for days or weeks.
Which is better, footpegs or floorboards? Really it depends on you. Footpegs make a massive style statement, but so can floorboards. Pegs look mean because of their elongated appearance, while floorboards are more subtle and make the rider look more planted and relaxed.
Highway pegs are different from both of the above. Highway pegs usually clamp on to crash bars and give an additional option for leg positioning. They flip in and out so you can choose to either flip them out and take a leisurely ride with relaxed legs or flip them in for more aggressive cornering. Because you have more options for where to place them, you can give yourself a lot more options for keeping pressure off your lower back and reducing rider fatigue.
How to Choose the Best Foot Peg for your Harley and Riding Style
It's funny, there are a lot of articles about installing pegs and a lot of websites selling pegs, but there's not much out there that explains how to go about choosing the right type for you. Since there are literally thousands of options to choose from, it can seem overwhelming if you don't already know what you want.
Materials matter. Depending on the type and manufacturer, pegs might be made of stamped steel, aluminum, cast steel or cast stainless steel or titanium. Each has its benefits.
Aluminum can be anodized and it's easy to work with, so manufacturers can use it for some great-looking pegs. It's light but also softer than some of the other materials. It's more likely to dent or bend than harder metals.
The main advantage of titanium is how lightweight it is, but even though it's light and strong, it's brittle, and it won't bend, so if you drop your bike, it's possible a titanium peg might break.
Stamped steel is the most traditional form of peg. Cast stainless steel is pretty affordable. It doesn't rust and it is stronger than aluminum. It's not quite as strong as titanium, but it has just a little bit of bend to it, so it is less likely to snap under stress. However, it's heavier than your titanium or aluminum options. So, when choosing a material, you want to think what's most important in terms of durability and weight.
Then it's a good idea to ask yourself what you're hoping to gain if you're adding pegs where they didn't exist or switching from factory pegs to something else. Your body touches the bike at three points - your hands, your butt and your feet. Will the pegs you're looking at improve performance? Will the ones you're considering enable you to better control the bike? Will you be able to ride longer than you can now with your stock setup?
Narrowing Down Peg Choices
There's no one peg fits all because every rider is different, and even the ones who have similar motorcycles will sit on and use them differently. Ask yourself the following:
- How do you like to ride? The ability to position your feet is important in how you control the bike. Being better able to control and shift your weight will enhance your riding abilities.
- Where do you like to ride? What do you experience in terms of geography, traffic and road conditions.
- When do you typically ride? Is it an early morning commute, a weekend road trip or do you think of yourself more as a cafe cruiser or bar hopper?
- What type of tires do you have? If they're knobby, aggressive tires you probably want pegs to match, with plenty of grip and a shape that allows for that type of riding. If your tires are more dual or multi-purpose, you probably want a peg that allows more versatility.
- What bothers you now? When do you find yourself shifting around trying to find a more comfortable position and what does your body want to do instead?
Positioning Highway Pegs for Harley®
What's the best position for highway pegs on your Harley®? The one that allows you to ride most comfortably. People get hung up on looks, but the first issue should always be function.
If a position requires you to straighten your leg all the way out to rest your feet on the pegs, your knees are going to hurt and you're going to fatigue faster. If you slap them on based on where you feel like they'll look the most impressive, you might end up never using them because their position isn't helpful for increasing your riding comfort.
Think of how you normally sit in a chair when you're the most comfortable. Some people like their knees to be very bent, others want to sit with legs extended and only a slight bend in the knee. Use your own preferences to dictate highway peg positioning.
Where to Buy Motorcycle Pegs Near Dallas
We can help you find the footpegs, floorboards or highway pegs that will make your ride more comfortable. And now through May 31, we're offering $20 off when you purchase highway pegs and mounts together. Click here for details.