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      11-23-2012, 03:53 PM   #1
HeartMD
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How to learn heel toe?

Though I have been driving standard transmission cars for about 20 years it wasnt until about a year ago that I figured Id try and learn how to "really drive". So Ive worked a ton on rev matching and that is well n good, but damn for the love of god, I just dont have enough flexibilty in my right ankle to be able to brake and blip the throttle at the same time when trying to heal n toe.
Youtube videos dont help at all.
Can any of the seasoned vets out there throw me some pointers..

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      11-23-2012, 03:57 PM   #2
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A lot of people will actually suggest to roll your foot instead of twisting your ankle because it's faster and there's just overall less movement.

Brake with your big toe and the left side of the ball of your foot and tap your gas with the right side of your foot. Try this when you have PLENTY of room in front of you and behind you. You might end up braking too hard with your left foot or your foot might slip off the brake and just hit the gas. At least, that's what happened when I first tried it lol.
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      11-23-2012, 04:17 PM   #3
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      11-23-2012, 04:20 PM   #4
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are you trying to learn to heel-toe for everyday driving or track driving, because there is a big difference between trying to blip the throttle 1000 rpm while lightly pressing the brake and trying to rev the engine to 8000 rpm while deep into the brakes. For the former case, I'd say wear a wide pair of shoes and roll your foot over. For the latter, work on your ankle flexibility and find an open road to practice your hard stops.
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      11-23-2012, 04:24 PM   #5
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I would probably just get a wound care consult.
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      11-23-2012, 04:36 PM   #6
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A professional driving school would do wonders. In bondurant, you spend 2 hours on the first day driving vettes around an oval just heel-toeing.
They set you up in a big parking lot with a cone at each end. it is set so that you exit the turn in second, shift into third at the middle of the straight, and then hell-toe into second for the next turn. You wind up puling a shift every 5 seconds or so. instructors jump into your car to make sure you are doing it right.

They take it pretty seriously. But....on day 3 or 4, you do it second nature.

I heel-toe 80% of my shifts on the street that involve second and third gear braking. And on the track, 100%

Think of how hard it is to find the time to work at heel-toe. It would take months to get that much practice.... call bondurant!
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      11-23-2012, 04:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eVitO View Post
A lot of people will actually suggest to roll your foot instead of twisting your ankle because it's faster and there's just overall less movement.

Brake with your big toe and the left side of the ball of your foot and tap your gas with the right side of your foot.
I don't recommend using your toe. Your toe is not strong and precise enough for braking duty.

Use the ball of the foot under the big toe. Then as suggested, simply roll your foot to hit the gas pedal.

Last edited by CanAutM3; 11-23-2012 at 04:52 PM.
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      11-23-2012, 04:50 PM   #8
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It's hard to practice on the street, relatively easier on the track. Like others said, try to brake with the left side of ur right foot and blip the throttle with the right side of it. I found it easier to do with hard braking, the deeper you step on the brake, the easier you can roll ur foot and blip the throttle...its really just practice...good luck...
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      11-23-2012, 04:50 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eVitO View Post
A lot of people will actually suggest to roll your foot instead of twisting your ankle because it's faster and there's just overall less movement.

Brake with your big toe and the left side of the ball of your foot and tap your gas with the right side of your foot. Try this when you have PLENTY of room in front of you and behind you. You might end up braking too hard with your left foot or your foot might slip off the brake and just hit the gas. At least, that's what happened when I first tried it lol.
+1, even for track driving this can work if you have big enough feet. I just wear size 11 D and can do this during track driving with no problem. Heal toeing is really not useful unless you are doing some pretty hard braking IMHO, but a little blip is sometimes nice under light braking.

Good luck!
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      11-23-2012, 04:51 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apecush View Post
are you trying to learn to heel-toe for everyday driving or track driving, because there is a big difference between trying to blip the throttle 1000 rpm while lightly pressing the brake and trying to rev the engine to 8000 rpm while deep into the brakes. For the former case, I'd say wear a wide pair of shoes and roll your foot over. For the latter, work on your ankle flexibility and find an open road to practice your hard stops.
Actually, even on the track, you should rarely need blipping to 8000RPM.

This is a mistake I often observe with student. They tend to try to do the downshift early in the braking zone. It is as if they want to get rid of the downshift as soon as possible to concentrate on braking.

One should actually do the exact opposite, downshift as late as possible in the braking zone; so the downshift is completed just before turn-in. Focus on braking first, then as you scrub off speed, you will realize there is plenty of time to downshift. Downshifting later will require much less of an RPM increase so it requires less of a blip and is easier to achieve. Further, if you do miss the blip there is less compression to upset the chassis and if it does get upset, it is at a lower speed.

Last edited by CanAutM3; 11-23-2012 at 11:24 PM.
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      11-23-2012, 04:56 PM   #11
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The pedal placement on this car is not ideal. The throttle pedal is too far aft relative to the brake, so unless you're braking hard (e.g. from hard speed), you're never in the right place to easily blip the throttle with the side of your foot.

I suggest getting a set of ultimate pedals, or even getting just their throttle pedal as it bolts on top of the existing pedal and brings its face closer to the same plane as the brake's. The other thing with this car is that the drivetrain has very low inertia, which is great, but when heel and toeing, requires a little more revs than one might give in another car.

For reference, in my S2000, I heel and toe just fine with the stock pedals, but on the M3, I went with a set of ultimate pedals and it made a huge difference.
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      11-23-2012, 08:44 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by piloto View Post
The pedal placement on this car is not ideal. The throttle pedal is too far aft relative to the brake, so unless you're braking hard (e.g. from hard speed), you're never in the right place to easily blip the throttle with the side of your foot.

I suggest getting a set of ultimate pedals, or even getting just their throttle pedal as it bolts on top of the existing pedal and brings its face closer to the same plane as the brake's. The other thing with this car is that the drivetrain has very low inertia, which is great, but when heel and toeing, requires a little more revs than one might give in another car.

For reference, in my S2000, I heel and toe just fine with the stock pedals, but on the M3, I went with a set of ultimate pedals and it made a huge difference.
I guess there is some relativity to this. I taught myself years ago on my 88 Mustang, which has very far from ideal pedal placement. In comparison, I thought the M3 was a huge improvement. (Then I went and bought a DCT)
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      11-23-2012, 09:08 PM   #13
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what size shoes do you wear? Also, what shoes are you wearing? Something like Puma drift-cat type shoes are easier to use. I still can't master it, but shoes does make a difference.
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      11-23-2012, 09:23 PM   #14
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I would probably just get a wound care consult.
OP appears to be a doctor too, adding to the fun
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      11-23-2012, 09:51 PM   #15
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+1 about delaying a downshift in a braking zone.

Try sitting with the car parked, with your foot on the brake, and blipping the throttle to get the right idea. I usually have my right knee pass under the steering wheel and to the left side to get a proper blip.

Once you get the parked and revving figured out, then get to a hill and practice getting up the hill with the foot on the brake and revving. (this is harder in our fancy cars with hill assist).

Then when you're ready to try to incorporate downshifting, focus more on revving the car and balancing your foot between the brake and throttle to find the right RPM's. A cloverleaf works perfect for this.

Once you're good at that, then you work on kicking/blipping the throttle.

You're starting at the final level of learning....you'll get it!
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      11-23-2012, 10:06 PM   #16
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      11-23-2012, 10:26 PM   #17
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Lots of good suggestions here.
- Practice while stopped, then work into it rolling after you're confident you have the technique down. Into neutral when clutch is engaged, into the lower gear just after the blip.
- Brake with the ball of the foot, roll to right and blip with side of heel. E9X M3 pedals are perfectly spaced from the factory.
- If you really want to become proficient after you've done several schools, the Bondurant Advanced Road Racing School will get you there. It's fabulous.
- Practice every day on the street. Choose a couple corners you can take spiritedly on your daily commute, and keep doing it so you don't lose it.
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      11-23-2012, 10:54 PM   #18
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Thanks for all the input guys. Tommorow Im waking up nice and early and gonna hit an empty parking lot and get to work. Gonna start off with just getting the actual motions down ie: car stop in neutral just hitting the break and trying various ways of blipping the throttle. Go figure it never occured to me to just practice with the car standing still. Just for the record my im 5'10" and wear a 11.5 shoe size.
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      11-23-2012, 10:56 PM   #19
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I would hazard a guess that your foot position for normal braking is more aft than will be ideal for rev matching. By that, I mean that you probably use more of your toes and some of the ball of your foot to apply pressure.
For rev matching I would recommend the majority of the pedal pressure be applied with the ball of your foot. That being the case, I would suggest that you start out by moving your foot forward on the pedal under normal braking. When you apply the brakes, curl your toes *up* a bit using the ball of your foot directly below your big toe to apply 90+ percent of the braking force. Once you are comfortable with that, relax your toes and do the same thing while sliding your foot to the right. Eventually you will gain the feel of using the ball of your foot on the brake and you will find that a third to half of your foot is "hanging" out over the gas pedal. Once you're to that point you are almost home. The only remaining technique is to roll your ankle out a bit, using the outer portion of your foot to blip the throttle. Blip depth, length, and timing will take a bit of practice but once you have the basic mechanics down you'll be surprised how quickly they come to you. To really get timing down, as others have stated you will need to practice on a track as brake pedal depth will change dramatically under heavier pressure requiring less of an ankle roll for the desired blip.

Good luck and let me know if this helps!
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      11-23-2012, 10:57 PM   #20
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OP appears to be a doctor too, adding to the fun
LOL yeah go figure. We got our in house comedians.. Screw the wound consult, Im gonna need skin grafts.

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      11-23-2012, 11:01 PM   #21
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I would hazard a guess that your foot position for normal braking is more aft than will be ideal for rev matching. By that, I mean that you probably use more of your toes and some of the ball of your foot to apply pressure.
For rev matching I would recommend the majority of the pedal pressure be applied with the ball of your foot. That being the case, I would suggest that you start out by moving your foot forward on the pedal under normal braking. When you apply the brakes, curl your toes *up* a bit using the ball of your foot directly below your big toe to apply 90+ percent of the braking force. Once you are comfortable with that, relax your toes and do the same thing while sliding your foot to the right. Eventually you will gain the feel of using the ball of your foot on the brake and you will find that a third to half of your foot is "hanging" out over the gas pedal. Once you're to that point you are almost home. The only remaining technique is to roll your ankle out a bit, using the outer portion of your foot to blip the throttle. Blip depth, length, and timing will take a bit of practice but once you have the basic mechanics down you'll be surprised how quickly they come to you. To really get timing down, as others have stated you will need to practice on a track as brake pedal depth will change dramatically under heavier pressure requiring less of an ankle roll for the desired blip.

Good luck and let me know if this helps!
Dude you 100% completely descibed my style of braking. I will definately try this method tommorow when I get out. Ill post back one my practice session is done.
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      11-23-2012, 11:28 PM   #22
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LOL yeah go figure. We got our in house comedians.. Screw the wound consult, Im gonna need skin grafts.

I kid.
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