Virtual Power on Unsupported Trainer

I feel dumb asking this but…. I am using virtual power and an unsupported trainer. My tested power and RPE feel out of whack and the curves online say that my virtual analog is higher than the curve for my trainer but I could only find one compatible level.

Do I lower the level on my physical trainer to try to get my curves to match? I don’t know enough about power curves to know if my virtual analog wand physical trainer would be consistent across all resins race levels x Or stay the course and use awkward gearing / resistance (lunges are fine in FTP range but my legs realllllyyy struggle).

As long as Virtual power is giving you a number that you can test and set your zones to, it doesn’t really what that number is so long as its consistent.
Do your ramp test and your training o the same setup and the training should carry across. Remember, FTP is just a number, it doesn’t matter how yours compares to anyone else, just yourself. You should be able to train and see progress regardless.

I used an off brand dumb trainer for my first year on Trainerroad and trained well enough on it to bump into Cat 3.
I was sorely brought back down to earth when I bought a power meter and tested properly to get my ‘real number’. I do miss my 500+W FTP :cry:


I’d email with the make and model of your trainer. There is a good chance someone else has used it and they might have a suggestion which profile matches it the closest.

Posting them make and model here as well as searching the forum for it might also help you or someone else with the answer.

Haha, I am getting a 185 FTP. Find of feel like my power range is a little squished together. I totally understand that it’s all relative. Might try a ramp test with a lower physical resistance level to see how it feels.

  • That is entirely possible, and the result of having an unsupported trainer in use, mapped to any other similar trainer purely based upon type (like magnetic). There is no guarantee the power curve is anywhere close since they have not tested it.

  • It’s a bit like trying to map Miles per Hour from one car to Kilometers per Hour on another car. We might know one well, but there is no connection to the other in any way guaranteed.

  • Testing other settings may provide better results, but it will be nearly impossible to confirm beyond a seat of the pants guess, since you don’t have any actual power device for comparison.

Excellent idea, I will give that a shot.

Have you taken a look at this website, perhaps your trainer is listed, try to find something that is close enough and input that into the app.

As others mentioned, with virtual power, the number is not that relevant, as long as you keep the conditions consistent (tire, tire pressure, roller pressure, etc.) it is good enough to train with. As long as your tested FTP feels like FTP (RPE wise) it doesnt matter if it read 200, 300 or 400 watt, as long as its consistent.

Best thing is to get a power meter, as i should do too, because virtual power has messed me up in the past too where my trainer was on level 4 while the knob indicated level 3, that can mess with you confidence in your legs big time.