Value to doing half intervals of VO2 workouts in small ring and half of them in big ring on erg mode

Hi Guys,

I am a New trainer road user here.
I trained a lot on the Kurt Kinetic road machine and finally decided to take the plunge and get a smart trainer (Kickr Snap) and a Trainer Road membership.
I am just getting used to the erg mode.

I was wondering if there is any value to doing half of the intervals of a Vo2 workout (Shortoff for example) in the small ring (39/17) and half of them in big ring (53/17) in my case.


Even wear on both chainrings? The small ring is cheaper though… so I’d wear that one out first

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There shouldn’t be… however i do sometimes think it’s easier in the little ring despite a watt being a watt.

Gearing and resulting flywheel speed of the trainer in ERG mode is largely a preference choice. Overly simple suggestions are along the lines of:

  • Lower gear / slower flywheel used for replicating feel of climbing and/or slower riding like off road.

  • Higher gear / faster flywheel used for replicating feel of faster riding on flats and rollers.

Lots of variables and personal preference here, so I recommend doing some testing, consider that feel with respect to your training needs and choose appropriately. A mix from time to time is a decent idea.

Do note though, that this flywheel speed has been seen to influence RPE and even FTP test results. As such, I recommend testing in a gear that you intend to use for the majority of your ERG training, to keep the FTP results and training more closely aligned.


Thanks Chad.
That makes sense.
I plan to do most of my sweet spot and threshold workouts in the small ring.
So will test in the same gear ratio.

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Which one gives highest ftp results? :joy:


Depends… :stuck_out_tongue:

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Big ring always seems easier - my FTP in the small ring is around 275W off the ramp - can get 300W in the big ring…both are wrong though as I can only do a 25 my TT at about 255W max…that said the ramp test results seem to scale alright with TR workouts except at the extreme end…e.g Spencer+2…However I always use the small ring now as if you don’t the flywheel inertia means I can’t get down to the recovery valley power while pedalling due to the wattage floor on my Kickr snap.

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I’m also a long time Road Machine/Kickr (V5) convert this year. I’ve found that I like the feel of riding in the big ring more than the small ring, probably because I’m used to flat road riding, but it also feels more like the Road Machine did. The small ring feels like pedaling through mud for me.

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