Ramp Test vs 20 Minute FTP Test vs 8 Minute FTP Test

thx mi-xc, thats better than 1st advice :D, Wtriathlet thx.

Warmup however you do it, and then just do a 30 min as hard as you can go test. Thats the FTP test I’ve been using for close to 10 years now. I like that one and it seems to be pretty inline. Friel prescribed this forever.


Hey everyone,

I am a long time Trainerroad user, and a diligent podcast listener. I know all about why TR came up with the ramp test, and I don’t fault their logic one bit.

But, I’ve got a confession to make. I still use the 20 minute protocol, and will probably continue to do so.


  1. I’ve been 20-minute-testing for a number of years now so, scientifically speaking, it makes sense to maintain the same method.
  2. 20-minute testing, in my experience, puts my FTP right at the perfect spot. Not so low that workouts are a doddle, but just about manageable nearly every time (for workouts that are meant to be that way: VO2/thresh/over-unders etc.).
  3. As a runner as well as a cyclist, I have found that I am much more of an aerobic machine. Good at longer intervals or anything as short as VO2 Max, but I really struggle to lay the power down for anaerobic efforts of less than 2 mins - such as what is required in the ramp test. I am pretty convinced that this is why the ramp test always gives me a lower FTP than the 20-min.

I know fully well that you’re all thinking that I am just bolstering my ego by selecting the higher value… But my workout compliance is pretty/very high with the higher FTP! Happy for you all to give me some stick though :wink:

Any other fellow 20-minute testers out there?


During warmer months when all of my training is done outside I tend to do 20 minute tests after ramp tests to double check the ramp tests’ outcome, and maybe try to push that little bit further.

So if say a ramp test on Monday would indicate to an FTP of 315 then on a Wednesday I would pace a 20 minute test at 331/332 watts and maybe push for something extra near the end. Then I would use that score as my new baseline FTP.


Makes sense, pretty good idea as long as the same PM is used!

Yep, I have a dumb trainer but a fairly decent crank based power meter so no matter the ride the power source is always the same (minus the temperature differences of indoor and outdoor rides that is).

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Having the 5’ effort before the 20’ is key to make the 20’ test more realistic.

Ever test with a 30’ or 60’ field test?

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I’m going to do something new.

Doing the Ramp test and then the day after I’m going to do the Kolie Moore test.

Then one will be for vo2max workouts, and the other will be for Threshold and sweetspot work

  1. yes me too
  2. yes me too
  3. yes me too, but when i start doing anaerobic training/short intervals/racing I adapt very fast, so it just take couple sessions and i can hammer those intervals.

So i use it and it works perfectly for me.

Agreed. This is what seems to put my FTP in the right spot.

I have, effectively, done 60 min tests in the past by smashing it full gas up ~1hr climbs in South France. But testing wise, I think the 20 minute is long enough!

Maybe (definitely) my downfall is just never training the anaerobic side of things… :sweat_smile:

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Discussed plenty here already


Word for word: This is me too.

I rarely FTP test because it’s just so horrific and frankly i’m a wimp but 20 mins tells me what i need to know and it works out well for my training, as calibrated by over/unders etc. I can raise or drop my FTP manually now based on how it feels according to fluctuating fitness during the year, but i’ll do a 20min test once a year, maybe.
Ramp tests give me about 35-40W down, for probably the same reason as you: I can hold near my FTP for over an hour but my 1min power is like a little girl.

I may be wrong and i know the ramp test is there for a reason etc but it just doesn’t work for me. - Not just for the vanity of getting a result of 280W instead of 325W but if i then try and train off 280W it’ll be too easy and i won’t break a sweat.

Hi everyone. Is anyone still using the 20 min or 2x8 min FTP tests instead of Ramp Test? I’ve used Ramp Test a few times but thinking of going back to the old style. As a Time Trialist I’m thinking it may give me a more accurate figure

I don’t mean to be rude, but there’s an absolute mountain of information on this subject already on the forum. Try searching and you will find days worth of reading.


In addition, this thread about testing even longer than 20 minutes:

This link will enable you to join my ‘team’ and get access to a ready made version of the test:


You should have a read though, wealth of information and views already posted answering your question in depth.

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Yes. And maybe on your second question, depends on your physiology and other factors. The Kolie Moore protocol thread is an interesting read.


Referenced thread:


On any given day there are more than a dozen 20 minutes tests and maybe 10 8 minute tests executed. So they still get used on what I would call a fairly regular basis.

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