Nancy Jones is a competitive cyclist from Monroe, GA, racing for Louis Garneau Factory Team.Recently Nancy has been enjoying the benefits of an indoor Rock And Roll trainer by Kinetic. Below Nancy describes her experience with the Kinetic inRide power meter, attached to her bicycle trainer.
I have been training with power out on the road for several years now. I started with hub based power and now I am running crank based power. I was interested in trying this new device to see how it worked for the indoors and how the readings compared to my crank based power.
In order for this unit to work you have to have a Kurt Kinetic brand trainer: Rock and Roll, Road Machine or Pro Trainer. You will also need a Bluetooth 4.0 compatible device like an IPhone or Android device and download the free app for the device to record and analyze the data.
The installation of the sensor and magnet to the trainer is simple and fast.It actually took me longer to download the app and figure out how to use it than it did to physically install it.
How does it work? By placing the small magnet in the unit, the sensor effectively becomes a speed sensor. Using speed it is able to predict power based on a known power curve. A power curve means that a given speed you will produce a specific wattage (regardless of gearing). From there the unit transmits the final power wattage (as well as speed) to the Bluetooth Smart power meter device profile. At this point applications and devices that support Bluetooth Smart can pick it up.
Once you have the app set up and running all you need to do is begin your trainer workout. You can scroll through 6 different pages to watch your workout unfold in front of you. When you’re done you directly upload to an email option like Mapmyfitness, Strava, Training Peaks, 2Peak, Ride With GPS, Garmin Connect or Dropbox.
You can sync your workout to your favorite playlist or tracks on your phone, or set up different triggers that play a certain songs for harder intervals.
For the testing I also used my crank based power info to compare to the trainer based power calculations. As I suspected they were not identical since there was a lag between when I was putting power to the pedals versus when the flywheel picked up speed. The inRide measured average watts 16-20 watts higher than my cranked based power unit did. The average cadence read 5 rpms lower than my crank based power. Who is to say that my crank based power is 100% accurate without a factory calibration? For the inRide to be most usable, a power test would need to be done on the trainer using the InRide, to get the best power zones specific to the that unit. (Because everyone loves a power test!)
I think this is a powerful tool in a tiny package. It is technology based with dependency on a smart phone and Kinetic Trainer. This is a very useful tool for someone that rides the trainer a lot.
This is a very useful tool for someone that rides the trainer a lot. This unit would also apply to someone that might have wheel based power in a set of carbon tubulars, that would not want to wear their race tire down on a trainer. It would be handy for someone who has a trainer bike and race bike. It would be handy for someone interested in power but not committed to the $1500+ price tag.
(They would totally be hooked after using this device.)
-Lots and Lots and Lots of display options. (if you’re a techie you will love the endless amount of data you can look at while riding.)
-Comfortable hear rate strap.
-Easy how-to video on Kinetic’s website.
-Upload to almost any online file analyzer site or email directly.
-You will need your own phone mount to attach your phone to your bike while you ride and protect it from sweat. (makes sense because different phones will be used so you need to get a case/mount made for your phone.)
-You need to own a Kinetic Trainer (best trainers ever!)
-Need to have some basic techie knowledge to navigate through installation and program on your phone.
- The lack of Ant+ turns some potential buyers away