Trainer vs race bike differences

Question for the masses , Should I expect a performance difference between training on a 20 year old road bike and racing my MTB bike? Gearing differences and geometry differences , or is training universal, the brain will fall into a known cadence and stress level that is close to FTP regardless to gearing??

What say you…

I think similar to fit, the geometry differences will see a difference how and when muscles are recruited. This will change power and therefore cadence. Or at least it could.

With that said, I think the important point is if you predominately train on the road bike make sure you’re riding the mountain bike each week to hold on to that mountain adaptation. Honestly, I think being able to ride different bikes well makes for a better/faster/more fit rider! I know a number of guys who race with CZ Racing and they do a fair amount of training on the road and kill it on the mountain bike.


Your training and FTP gains will apply to most any bike, but I would try to match the fit between the two as best you can. The little differences in body/bike positions and angles may exacerbate potential injury issues.

Even professional mountain bikers will train on their road bikes in season. With that said, it might make sense to save the more intense, race specific intervals for your mountain bike if you can swing it.

Thank you for the replies, I was able to order a slick for my MTB yesterday evening and plan on using it instead of the old roadie.

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