Yeah it has the thumb on the inside. I haven't used a road bike before so I'm not really sure what the norm is. The tiagra and up parts from shimano have both done with about the same motion. Shifting to bigger rings involves pushing the whole lever just like on the sora. Shifting to smaller rings involves clicking a lever that sits right behind the lever (instead of the thumb thing). The problem with the thumb thing is that you can't really reach it when you are riding in the drops (although even the highest end Campy shifters have thumb levers...they are shaped a little differently but I guess people can manage). I think a lot of people are of the belief that the only reason shimano builds the Sora units with the not very ergonomic thumb lever is to convince people to upgrade SRAM's shifters also have a lever behind the brake lever but to work them, you click it a little bit and it shifts to a smaller ring and then if you push it far, it shifts to a big ring (and the brake lever doesn't move at all).