How to choose your Home Trainer
Winter is here, the night falls early and it is getting colder and wetter... For many cyclists, the cold, rain and mud are an excuse to leave the bike for a few months. Fortunately, the Home Trainer has been designed to continue training at home during this winter season.
Initially used by professionals in winter or before a race, the Home Trainer has very quickly become democratized to meet the different needs of amateur cyclists and different wheel sizes. Easy to use, the Home Trainer allows you to ride your own bike indoors via the rear wheel attachment. Relatively space-saving, the Home Trainer is easy to store and transport.
Home Trainer comparison: the different types
In the family of Home Trainer, there are different models. To help you in your choice, we offer you a market overview to know everything about this essential accessory!
Resistance Home Trainer
They allow the bike to be fixed directly to the machine via the rear wheel. These models provide the same sensations as a classic outing because you are installed on our own bike and they offer the possibility to ride a dancer. Depending on the needs of the drive, the wheel can be more or less braked via a hydraulic, magnetic or air resistance. This resistance exerted on the rear wheel therefore makes it possible to vary the intensities.
An entry-level resistance home trainer will allow you to simulate a flat course and offer 5 to 10 braking positions. It will be noisy and your rear tire will tend to wear out quickly due to friction on the plastic roller. A mid- to high-end home trainer will simulate slopes and be quite quiet, especially if the drive roller is made of gel.
Direct drive home trainers
They allow the bicycle chain to be connected directly to the machine equipped with a cassette and not to the complete rear wheel. These complete home trainers do not wear out the rear tyre and allow you to simulate slopes of up to 18% in a rather discreet way. On the other hand, these products are relatively cumbersome because they do not bend. Among the market's leading models, we find the Elite Direto.
The Home Trainer with rollers
They allow you to work on balance, pedaling technique and velocity. On a roller, the bike is not fixed. It therefore does not allow to simulate slopes or to work on strength and power. The rollers are also more cumbersome than a conventional home trainer. The rollers are also very practical for a warm-up before a competition (track, cyclo-cross etc.)
The connected Homes Trainer
Training on Home trainer can scare some people because of the monotony of the exercise. Fortunately, all Home Trainer brands offer connected products that allow you to view a course on a screen (tablet, DVD, computer, smartphone), follow a precise training according to your needs (slope, strength, endurance...), have different data related to your training and even drive remotely with a friend (via Internet). With the emergence of many training applications such as Strava or Training Peaks, it is also possible to share your outputs on these platforms (this is the case, for example, on the Elite Drivo 2).
The rules to follow for effective training :
Once the home trainer has been chosen, it is now a question of training on a regular basis. For this training to remain a pleasure and to be effective, it is necessary to respect certain simple rules :
- Do not drive more than 2 hours on Home trainer. The best thing is to drive for 1 hour
- Hydrate well and fill up with mineral salts because sweating is very important indoors because of the lack of cooling caused by the movement.
- Protect the soil and the bicycle from perspiration.
- Bring a towel to wipe your face so that perspiration does not sting your eyes.
- Be equipped with a cardiac sensor to better manage your training (percentage of heart rate) and a cadence sensor (number of pedal revolutions per minute).
- Plan a warm-up of 10 to 15 minutes and finish with 5 to 10 minutes of active recovery (60% FC Max).
- Use a Home Trainer tire that will damage much less quickly than a conventional tire and that will be less noisy.
The different types of training :
As we have seen, the Home Trainer allows you to continue training during the winter and to preserve what you have learned. It should be noted that 30 minutes of Home Trainer is equivalent to 1 hour of road cycling. Depending on the type of exercise, a home trainer allows you to work on velocity, strength and explosiveness.
- Velocity work : the goal is to turn the legs quickly (high cadence). The higher the cadence, the more coordinated your movements will be and the more efficient your pedalling will be. This exercise also allows you to work on one or both legs at a time. For this exercise, it will be necessary to grind, work between 60 and 70% of your mac heart rate (FC Max) and turn your legs between 90 and 120 rotations per minute (rpm). Depending on the form, vary the sequences, the duration of each sequence and the number of repetitions.
- Force work : the objective is to drive with a large gearbox and high resistance on the Home Trainer. The pedalling rhythm should not exceed 50 to 60 rpm and the Fc Max should be around 80%. For this exercise, it will be necessary to opt for fractioned. Warm-up, 3 to 5 minutes of strength (50 rpm), 2 minutes of recovery. Repeat the cycle several times and then end with 10 minutes of active recovery.
- Explosivity work : here, the goal is to do short, violent exercises to get your body used to violent climbs or sprints. In this exercise, it will also be necessary to work in a fraction. 10 minutes of warm-up (60-65% fc mac) then repeat several sprints from 10 to 20 seconds at 95-100% fc max with a rest time of 45 seconds between each interval. End with 10 minutes of calm and active recovery.
In short, how to choose your home trainer :
If you wish to invest in a Home Trainer or change it, make sure that it is compatible with your bike (wheel size, axle). Then determine your needs. If you want to pedal quietly in front of the TV, you can use a classic home trainer. To do specific work, it is better to invest in a medium or high-end home trainer that offers different levels of resistance and different levels of slope.
Finally, if you are a connected person who wants to break with the monotony of a classic Home Trainer, opt for a "virtual Trainer" product that will simulate races or allow you to drive remotely with a person connected to the Internet.
If you live in an apartment, be sure to choose a compact model that is easy to store and does not make too much noise so as not to disturb neighbours. In any case, make sure you drink plenty of fluids during exercise, protect the ground and your bike, and equip yourself with a cadence and heart rate sensor to manage your training as well as possible.
Home Trainer Direct Transmission Elite Suito T
Elite Novo Force Turbo Trainer
Home Trainer Wahoo Fitness Kickr V5