TT position on dumb turbo

I’ve read that riding in position on a ‘dumb’ turbo is a bad idea though I’m not entirely sure why. Something to do with the fixed nature of a wheel-on turbo I think.

From personal experience, I have noticed that riding in position for any extended period of time is harder and just feels wrong. Short intervals are fine, but anything beyond 5 minutes, at ANY power, feels progressively more uncomfortable.

Anyone notice this too? I’m tempted to invest in a direct drive turbo, but I only want to if it’ll allow me to ride in the TT position.

Discomfort on a trainer is a common issue. See the topics below. It’s not specifically the TT position although I suspect that position may be worse than a normal road position.

This isn’t something, as far as I’m concerned that will be fixed by a direct drive unit since the way in which the bike is mounted isn’t dissimilar to a “wheel on” trainer and is at least as stiff, if not stiffer.

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To the “Dumb is a problem…” idea, I think it’s probably without merit. There could be a consideration of the flywheel speed and related “momentum/inertia” on the trainer vs a smart trainer, but I don’t really think so in general.

There may be a consideration if you are comparing a really cheap dumb trainer (that typically have a very small and ineffective flywheel) vs a mid to high end smart trainer (that often have much larger and effective flywheels). Potential loading on the body may differ a bit with the difference in pedal loading around the circle. But even if this is “real”, it is not restricted to the TT position only.

My real take on this is that it has to do with inside vs outside, and the fact that a TT position is usually uncomfortable outside in the first place. Taking that inside and often using a rigid trainer will likely amplify any discomfort in magnitude and show itself sooner in a ride.

To combat that, I suggest adding motion via small methods like a thick mat, or taking the step to a full rocker plate. My discussions with Kinetic reps confirmed my opinion that the Rock and Roll trainer, along with rocker plates, can greatly improve comfort for any indoor cycling, but particularly for TT positions (per the reasons above). Adding that freedom of motion impacts saddle comfort in a big and notable way.


Thanks for this. I replaced my saddle (was going to anyway as I had been getting chafing and wanted a saddle with the nose “cut off”), and put a folded up yoga mat under the turbo. Definitely helped make 2x20’ @ sweetspot more comfortable than similar sessions beforehand. Thanks

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I have a Wahoo Kickr and a Feedback Sports Omnium for race days. I have ridden the TT bike on the Kickr, but absolutely hated it. Much less power, and uncomfortable writhing minutes (compared to riding outdoors). However, riding on the Omnium, where the bike „wiggles“ from side to side, I have much more fun riding in the TT position. That’s why I do road bike training/ Kickr roadbike to get my power up and Position training on the Omnium. And of course try to get outdoor whenever possible.

Similar experience to me. I have stopped riding in position on the turbo. It’s less fun and more uncomfortable. I wouldn’t mind if my body adapted to it, but it doesn’t seem to be, and may have caused a hamstring issue.

Now I just sit up and hold the base bar, which is probably similar to the drops on a road bike, not bolt upright.