Ramp Test v 4DP

Might be poor form to bring this up, but I am too curious about it. I like the 4DP concept. Ramp test is my favourite test I’ve taken because it’s actually kinda fun and short. Just the sort of thing that appeals to me. Maybe there is room to do something that looks at different aspects of power and treats us more as individuals?

This has been mentioned as a sub-part in some discussions.


Looking a 4DP and think we should have something like this sooner than later!

Consider this my +1 vote!

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I’m wondering if internally the TR guys have an opinion on this. Are they of the opinion that the Ramp test is the best approach to testing and setting intervals, or would they like to do something like the 4DP. Do they think 4DP is unnecessary for setting interval targets? Do they think it’s better to have dynamic intervals but it’s a boat load of coding so they’d rather we all shut up about it :smiley:

Just the sort of questions that you have to expect a curious member base to be thinking :slight_smile:

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It already exists: Power Profile Test

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Yip, I know about this one!

So I’ll retract my +1! :wink:

The Power Profile Test doesn’t manipulate your intervals when you train on TR. The 4DP on the platform that shall not be named actually sets your workouts intervals to workloads relevant to your tested MAP, AC, FTP…

I know my 4DP from going for KOMs, it’s right there on my power curve. All that info doesn’t really get taken into account by any workout platform though.

More than one way to skin a cat…TR thinks their ramp test is the best testing method…Sufferfest thinks 4DP is best…All up to the consumer to choose what is best for them.

Talked about here in AACC158: https://soundcloud.com/trainerroad/ftp-testing-and-the-trainerroad-ramp-test-a-comprehensive-guide-ask-a-cycling-coach-158#t=46:21


@Ian Cheers, will check that out!

I must admit to sensing marketing hype with 4DP. There is enough discussion about what FTP really means, how is it measured, what is TSS, when is fatigue too high, what is your HRv and so on. It always ends with …and as everyone is different, YMMV :grinning:

No doubt if I was a pro rider I might be more inclined to worry, but using FTP to scale a program seems fine to me. Something about getting 80% of the benefit from 20% of the hassle maybe.


I think the idea behind the ramp test is just ease of use. Reasonable profiles can be build with this measure of FTP/CP/LT (whatever we’re calling it) and effective training plans administered. Given that TR is ‘big data’ now (meant in all the good ways), the shear volume of data that can be mined to provide the optimal algorithm for ‘predicting’ training zones is key.

Of course, the 4DP probably allows you to dig deeper into your power-profile, but the calendar and Personal Records can provide this insight without killing yourself on a testing day. I think the drawback to the 4DP for most of us is that the recovery is quite long and interferes with getting after the training.

Sure i’ve done and administered all of those tests in the lab, and have built those profiles with students in applied endurance training coursework, but for my money the ramp test is detailed enough for quality training.

You could also do all the tests as separate protocols on different days instead of all together in one session.

I revisted this over lunch. I’d forgotten how many of the things @Nate_Pearson quoted I did during Beta Testing when I wasn’t trusting the ramp test - sticking with 20 minute test result, but then reducing intensity/ pausing during subsequent workouts etc etc - basically every thing they quoted about ramp test naysayers! I 100% trust the ramp test now fwiw.

Anyway, well worth a (re)listen as to why it works, what it’s aim is and what is potentially wrong with other testing protocols.


4dp is clearly taken from Cogans study which pretty much is the bible: “training and racing with a power meter”

It’s an informative read

using 4DP made a pretty big difference in my workouts, the ones just based on FTP in zwift were way too easy for me, the same style workout adjust was much harder. I’m just doing SS on TR so it hasn’t come into play yet, but I’ll probably be swapping out for similar workouts in sufferfest when the time comes.