Kickr Best Practices

Did a search and didn’t find a similar thread. Thought I’d post a ‘Best Practices’ thread for things that I’ve learned as a relatively new TR user that I sort of had to learn the hard way. Hopefully it may help someone in the same position. If anyone has any other Best Practices, feel free to add.

  1. Importance of calibrating both the Kickr and my Garmin pedals before each ride when utilizing Power Match. Before figuring out the importance of doing this, my Kickr completely dropped its resistance when in ERG mode at some point into the workout. This happed to me the first two times I used TR and almost quit my TR subscription out of pure frustration, as it was an issue I never had had when using Zwift or any other product. When I started, I only calibrated the Garmin pedals as I could swear I remember a TR coaching podcast that said that in using Power Match calibrating the trainer was not necessary. I don’t know if it’s just a Kickr glitch, but calibrating both solved all my issues.

  2. Figuring out how to minimize the time it takes for the Kickr to ramp up to the designated interval power when in ERG mode. My trainer seems to take have quite a bad lag time to reach the required power when in ERG mode. I learned that if I drop my cadence a bit, then ramp it up to the desired interval cadence 1 or 2 secs before the interval starts the KICKR has an easier time reaching the required power faster. The trick for me has been to decrease then increase cadence. I remember some of Chad’s instructions saying to ramp up to the desired cadence about 10 secs before the intervals starts, but that was just leading to a horrible time lag before the trainer ramped up to the desired power and I was severely undershooting power targets, especially short anaerobic intervals.

1 Like

on 2. using the small chain ring, rather than having it in the large one helps a lot too, especially for things like 30/30’s. It means the flywheel has less inertia and the resistance can be applied quicker. For me it also meant that those short VO2 Max intervals became much harder as the resistance was applied earlier in the interval.

GPLama has written a fair bit on the differences between using the small V big ring in ERG mode, including that it focuses the emphasis on muscles in different ways through the pedal stroke. I think it is a good idea to train in a similar gear ratio that you tend to ride in outside. When I was specifically training for a hill climb PR I did every thing in the small ring and around 25-28 at the back. Now i’m doing most VO2 and threshold in the small and most SS tempo etc in the big, just to mix it up

1 Like

Teach your mind/body to modulate the power your legs are pumping into the pedals and just do it, don’t wait for the Kickr. Some 40/20s:

1 Like

Great points. Thank you. I’ve gotten most of my pointers from the TR ‘Ask a Cycling Coach’ podcast and heard them talking about the advantages of using the small ring as well. I have to say that a big consideration for me in also using the small ring in my trainer is that I live in South Florida… it’s pancake flat here… we live in the large ring. When I started indoor training i used the large ring, but the wear started to get out of control. Now it’s a bit more balanced and I’m happy I get to at least use the small ring for a change. Thanks for the input.

@WindWarrior did you do those in ERG mode as well? Yes, very impressive. Those are the types of charts I’m aiming to get. TY

I have this recent example of 30/15 in ERG, small ring and I use the lower to higher cadence kick to get on top of the power like you mention above.

I can probably find more workouts or answer more questions if you have them. I am an avid ERG user with years of experience in just about every type of workout and interval TR offers.

1 Like

Thanks, @mcneese.chad . Yes, those are the types of nice smooth efforts I’ll be shooting to emulate. I think I’ve found the formula as described above; I just need more reps to refine it, as I’m relatively new to the structured workout world. Chad’s (the other, other Chad) in workout instructions to get my cadence about 10 secs before the interval didn’t seem to work well for short term intervals, but maybe I misinterpreted it somehow.

Was hoping some of my learnings would help some other noob, so I started this thread. Thank you.

1 Like

Yes, Erg and big ring. Not always that good looking, and it does take some focus. Definitely not watching TV during those intervals. Modulating power is a mind/body skill you can develop.