The SH AM41 is not a skate shoe that happens to be pretty good for riding bikes. This is a purpose built mountain bike shoe with features that make it work better as a mountain bike shoe not in the skate park or strolling around the mall. The first clue to its purpose is its manufacturer Shimano. The SH AM41 is built for freeriders and DH racers. The armored lace shield provides extra protection that not only takes care of your laces, but takes care of the top of your foot in a crash or pedal kick. The tough synthetic leather holds up season after season, even in areas of common abrasion. You'll also notice a lack of mesh this keeps unwanted trail debris from getting inside the shoe. The mid high ankle design protects your ankle from abrasion, adds support, and prevents dirt and debris from entering the shoe. The sole is made by Vibram and is designed specifically to cling to pedals. The sole pattern is even designed to match perfectly with the PD MX80 Saint pedal.