Interested who is putting a MTB on their home trainer to maximise results when racing mtb. Guess the geometry is different so makes sense? More importantly, share some mtb indoor pics!
I have used both. I have found that as long as your saddle to pedals position is the same between your trainer bike (regardless of what kind it is) and your mtb, it makes no difference.
I do sometimes but I like having my mountain bike available for all my outside rides so I typically just keep my road bike on the trainer since I never ride it outside anymore.
If you don’t mind taking the bike on and off the trainer as needed I’d say go for it. I just like having my training set up ready to go at anytime so I keep the roadie on it.
I use a MTB on my trainer, but that has more to do with the extra bike I have that I can leave set up on the trainer permanently is a MTB. My fit on my trainer bike is close to, but doesn’t exactly match, my actual bike, but the convenience factor of having the bike always set up outweighs any downside to me. No picture because I’m not at home currently.
I see no benefit, I’m riding my MTB everyday as a commuter so it’s just easier to keep my old road bike on the trainer. I don’t really feel I’m missing anything as I’m still getting a lot of hours in on both bikes, so neither feels foreign to me.
I have all of my bikes set up to the same position, as much as feasibily possible, and have a road bike that lives permanently on the trainer at home, a hard tail that I commute to work on and put on the trainer there, and my full suspension bike for all my outside riding and racing.
I find the biggest difference is the inertia/feel of the gearing. I have 34T chainrings on both MTB and 53/39 on the road bike. There’s a definite difference, though I actually really appreciate/enjoy the difference. Especially for VO2 etc, the road bike and higher inertia is much nicer.
Great question, I was asking this in an earlier unrelated thread (BC bike race). All great answers and points so far. I think as long as the sizing is close and you have a PM, you should be able to stay consistent.
Since I ride the MTB more and it’s my only MTB steed, I want that readily available. So I’ve chosen to keep the road bike on the trainer. Also on my Neo trainer I would have to swap the road cassette for a MTB cassette, so more hassle that I’m not looking for.
I’d echo this. The big chainring makes everything nicer (ERG on Kickr '18), but actually doing all my training mid-cassette in the small ring regardless of what bike I use means that when it comes to my events I’m mostly pleased to have more rolling inertia, and when the steep climbs come I’ve been training for them for ages!
With the caveat that these are all bikes I know pretty well and have ridden enough to be comfortable on in events, I tend to put my event-specific bike on the trainer after its last pre-event wash. So, I’ll ride it outside an increasing amount leading up to the event, then about a week before the event for ‘B’ races and maybe 2 weeks pre-event for ‘A’ races, I’ll do the last outdoor shakedown, wash the bike, and then begin whatever version of a taper I have scheduled. That’s when that bike goes on the trainer. It ensures that the most recent power numbers in my head are based on my setup for the day (whether that’s about device or position doesn’t really matter at that point.) It also means it’s my most recently familiar posture, etc. etc.
I think I’d hold those general principles regardless of whether we’re talking about MTB, Road, Gravel, CX, Track, Fatbike, etc. The macro-training doesn’t change, so as long as it’s not going to be an unfamiliar machine all you need to do is fine-tune your calibration enough to eliminate surprises.
I know of MTB pros who ride their road bikes for endurance/tempo training on the road. In effect, sitting a long time in a similar position which is not their primary (MTB) position, with no disadvantages.
Riding/racing on your MTB means you are not stuck in a seated position long enough due to the nature of the terrain unlike a road/indoor trainer giving a more stagnant seated position.
I cannot see it making a marked difference, as long as you do get some training time on the MTB in your week, most likley the long weekend ride/s.
There is the specificity argument for riding the same bike indoors and outdoors, but personally I like to switch things up. I ride XC, gravel, and road, so regularly jump between bikes. They are set up similarly, but there are going to be some small subtle differences. The flip side to the specificity is by riding different bikes it may give you more versatility to be comfortable in different positions, so that when you make a change it comes easier due to not always being locked into the same position.
Indoors I’ve switched to a KICKR Bike, so I set it up to match my gravel bike. I figured the geometry of the gravel bike (Checkpoint SLR) sort of sits between my road bike (Emonda SLR) and XC bike (Supercaliber).
Elite pro athletes like Kate Courtney and Keegan Swenson are often switching up bikes based on the rides they are doing. Keegan post rides on Strava using a few different mountain bikes, a gravel bike, a road bike, and even an E-mountain bike. One thing he doesn’t tend to do though is ride indoors much.
Thanks everyone for your thoughts! Consensus is- doesn’t make any difference as long as set up is not too far out, and you get outdoors on your MTB. It’s freezing here so indoors sometimes more appealing!
It MAY matter a little bit, as your change in position will recruit different muscles. That said, I cant imagine its massive enough to matter if fitness is your main goal. I for sure feel it in different muscles going between a road and TT bike. How much that matters, who knows!
If racing XCO, riding on you MTB is so dynamic…you’re not just doing seated pedaling the whole race. That said, as long as you have the same crank length and saddle height it doesn’t matter what bike you use on your indoor trainer.
I’ve just swapped from my road bike on the trainer to MTB on the trainer after entering an MTB race. I moved my seat so that it is in exactly the same position in relation to my cranks as the road bike. The inertia is different, but after my first 3 weeks I’m totally used to it.
One think that hasn’t been mentioned is motivation. I’m really enjoying the change and after 6 years of road bike on the trainer I find myself more excited than ever to ride.
I have my CX flatbar- with bar ends bike with a big 48t on a Tacx Neo2T, with a Sterzo Elite on a rocker plate(not bragging just trying to paint a picture)… I like it, and think it mimics a bit of MTBing and have a big ring on there for Z%$% races (you will get dropped with MTB gearing). I have older CX V-breaks still on there and put firm-foam in-between the pads and can do grip strength exercises with it…not sure it helps but do a 12-30 rep squeeze in the middle of a TR workout and its almost like a real deal forearm pump., I like the wider bar stance indoors as well…opens up the chest and i think is a cooler way to catch the fan air (we’re talking not just a few CM wider but a full FOOT/32CM+ wider than a road bar) and the old school bar ends give another position. This bike is basically glued to the trainer and i think the frame (Lapierre carbon CX) is cracked in a few places so…
The Sterzo can be used on the one MTB course on Z@#$ which is actually a fun little course and with the sterzo makes it interesting and keeps up a bit of hand eye coordination instead of just spinning mindlessly. I’ve used it on RGT and hustle city a bit to. the sterzo is Fun but not as addicting as i thought it’d be and have really only used it maybe a dozen X since i got it a year ago.
I’m sure i don’t get any huge gains but i think just a better setup (flat bar) than a skinny road bike set up, my 2cents. Road bike on a trainer feels too much like going to work/job, maybe i’d do it if i were training for a big fondo or a new bike but will never go back.
I did it for about a month leading up to two endurance races in the Spring on back-to-back weekends (Ouachita Challenge in Arkansas, and Skyway Epic in Alabama). I feel like it helped get the body used to spinning in that position for longer periods of time. Both events were nearly 6 hour efforts each.
For XC racing, I don’t think it matters as much.