Vasa Swim ERG and TrainerRoad

I have been using TrainerRoad with the vasa swim erg for about a year. I have seen a huge improvement to my swimming strength. For the first time in my life i podium and did it 3 times (Open water swim races).

I am looking for others that are using TR with the Vasa to share workouts, training plans and technical etc…



That’s really awesome, Mike! Huge congrats on the improvements and subsequent podiums! :muscle: :tada:

Ah, the creative uses of TR outside cycling. Very cool stuff you’re doing with the Vasa. Are you creating your own workouts?

I’ve used a Vasa with TR once, and it was… a profoundly tiring experience. :laughing: I definitely can see how that combo would make for a really, really strong swimmer. (Not to mention, there’s far less chlorine involved!)

I, too, am curious to see how other Vasa users may be leveraging TR to get faster in the pool.

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Hi Alex
thank you!!
I have been treating my swim training like bike training… Start wit a FTP test then follow a TP plan.
the first 3 months were painful ( arms felt like they were going to fall off), but progressively worked my way through the plan to 1 - 1.5 hours each workout.

I felt wiped out every workout!! no joke at all) This is very different feeling than training in the pool.
Pool training sets are distance\pace based. it is easy to get distracted and miss a set by a few seconds. and sometimes taking extra rest between sets…
contrast to the Vasa and TR, where your sets are time\power based and rest is timed. There is no slacking off on this combo.

During the winter i did 3-4 times a week on the Vasa and 1 day in the pool. then moved to all pool workouts during the summer. its that time of year again to be back on the Vasa\TR

Its hard to tell if i am doing this correctly (long term) , there is no coaching with the Vasa and Swim coaches dont know how to add the Vasa to the mix…

Sounds like quite a solid system you’ve come up with!

The Vasa being different from pool workouts is absolutely the truth. I swam for 7 years (before I got into cycling) and thought the Vasa would be easy when I tried it. It certainly was nothing like my experiences in the pool! I definitely can see how the Vasa + TR combination would hold an athlete really, really accountable for their workout. Just like on the bike, you don’t want to miss your interval targets. :slight_smile:

As far as how to best use the Vasa in conjunction with actual pool workouts, I’ll defer to any swim coaches out there with Vasa experience. It sounds like what you’ve been doing has been really successful for you though!


Hey @helix,

I am considering subscribing to TR because It might be the only platform that Vasa is supported.

  1. Do you use the TrainerRoad workouts for the pool?
  2. Did you do an actual 20min power test? Or did you do a 400m/200m TT and computed the CSS based on those?

Any tips would be appreciated.


I am a religious user of the Vasa SwimErg and coach with it too. I use the Vasa 2 times a week and swim in the pool 2 times a week, all of which between 4-5k each time and that seems to be the golden combo for me. I have noticed a big boost in my fitness and my swim form by using the SwimErg not to mention my back is ripped now :wink:

I have been experimenting with the power curve and how to get an accurate critical power to structure workouts around. Be consulted with a few coaches and while it needs some tweaking the two ways that I like are the 5min 1min test which is similar to the 400/200 CSS test but you take the average then multiply by .80. Or the 1000m TT then use that as an average. I use damper door 3 for both tests. My only issue that I have with using it and TrainerRoad is the problem of two FTPs/CPs. It would be great to be able to set the Vasa workouts as swims instead of bikes too.

I create all my own workouts but would be happy to share. I like to focus on workouts that I optimize me being on the Vasa without flipturns and the added resistance so longer sets, force and power work, and aqua-velo bricks

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How do you use a VASA with TrainerRoad? I am considering getting a VASA for SUP training – how does it work with TR? Or is it only swimming that it will work for?

Hi Seulunga

I select plans that are designed for biking (base and build per my ATP is calling for) .

The first 2 FPT test I did was the 8 minute test, then I was able to do the 20 mintues test 4 month into using the Vasa

Based on the FTP I use the time\power method (distance on a Vasa is subjective, if the unit is on level 1 vs 7 it will always be the same distance even though 7 is much harder)

The Vasa only broadcasts in ANT+

i found a device that converts ANT+ to Bluetooth
Its called CABLE (Connect Ant Bluetooth)
even though it called CABLE its all wireless

this way i can use a new iPad without the need for a ANT+ dongle
TR will run on tables, phones and iPads

I am a religious user of the Vasa SwimErg and coach with it too. I use the Vasa 2 times a week and swim in the pool 2 times a week

That’s exactly my plan. I am spending too much time commuting to the pool.

I like are the 5min 1min test which is similar to the 400/200 CSS test but you take the average then multiply by .80.

This is very helpful. Thanks!

It would be great to be able to set the Vasa workouts as swims instead of bikes too.

If you use Training Peaks, i think TP allows switching from bike to swim.

I create all my own workouts but would be happy to share.

If you could share some it would be great. I am not 100% sure if I should translate my pool workouts to be time/power based or treat my swim training like bike training (meaning doing things like sufferfest, etc)

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I’ll put them in a google doc and post the link

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Hello everyone, I just received and setup my Vasa. I’m super excited to add this into my training routine. I am the newest of the new so if anyone can give me pointers on how I connect to TR or so my Element or Garmin 935 I would appreciate it. How do I do the ramp test in TR? Any help and advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance and best regards,

Here’s how to connect your Garmin:

Also check out the intro program here:

It might help you get familiar with using the Erg and good form habits. Let me know if you have any questions. I’d be more than happy to help as best I can. :slight_smile:

Enjoy your training

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Tribuddha, thanks for the quick response. Have you used TR workout creator for creating and performing any of these workouts? Thanks for the links, im on it.

Best regards,

It is definitely doable but I have not yet. My only issue with using the Vasa through TR is that my swim critical power is 80 while my cycling FTP is 300 so it is hard to switch my FTP back and forth between the two.

If I am on my laptop with an ANT+ dongle, I will sometimes use free ride so that I can display the numbers. If I am on my phone or iPad I will use the CABLE bridge to go from the ANT+ to bluetooth signal and connect that way.

Rouvy works well too and will display your power balance but they are having issues right now.

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How did you test for your critical power? I wonder if I can connect my Power Tap app to it, for the power balance.

At first I did a 5min and 1 min power test (separated by 10min of very easy recovery) then took 80% of that average (use damper door 2)

Now that I have a few more kms in me, I like the 1500m TT and use that average.

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Hi, Can you share the workouts? Thanks in advance!

Hey Heliix, are you still using Trainer Road with your VASA. Im purchasing one now and would like to maybe create a group with shared workouts.

Do you have different profiles for the FTP? Or do you keep switching back and forth?