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  1. #1
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    Rollers vs Trainer

    Thoughts?

    I've got a pretty good trainer but I've heard rollers can make winter training a bit less of a pain in the ass. Performance has these on sale right now...

    Travel Trac Technique Inertial Rollers - Trainer and Light Clearance

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  2. #2
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    Rollers require a bit more concentration (have to actually balance), but also seem to simulate the road a bit better. The position is more like on the road itself, so there's not as much discomfort with the continual sitting on the trainer. However, due to having to concentrate and work a bit harder (not being stationary and locked into position) it also can be a little challenging to do interval workouts. The trainer after a hard interval you can kind of sit up and "coast" as it were, but with the rollers you've still gotta stay upright.

    Maybe if you've got room try both and if need be sell one or the other.

  3. #3
    Wrench
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    I knew I shouldn't have looked at this thread... Now I am putting together plans to build my own.

  4. #4
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    Miss already said it all. Having both would be nice.

  5. #5
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    I like rollers with a bit of lip at the sides, helps me falls of less
    The state that separates its scholars from its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards & its fighting by fools.

  6. #6
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    Beware of PVC though. They have a potential for warping. A buddy of mine had two sets of warped PolyCarbonate rollers before getting some Krietlers.

    My friend and I bought our Krietler rollers ten years ago and they're still good today.
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  7. #7
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    I love my trainer. My winters are spent beating video games sitting on the trainer with a HR montitor set to yell at me if I get out of zone 2.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by miss rides a lot View Post
    Rollers require a bit more concentration (have to actually balance)
    Can you watch TV while on rollers...? Thinking about getting some but I also want to be able to zone out a bit (no pun intended) on long rides.

  9. #9
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    i use the inside ride emotion rollers, they are expensive but I use them a fair bit and they are a really, really nice product. I can ride out of the saddle and watch movies without really concentrating much and do 90-120 minute sessions without too much discomfort, which is what I need in the winter.

    Some of the cheaper rollers are not very round so they are loud. Kreitlers are good and half the price of mine. Mine are really nice if you spend a lot of time training indoors. I believe in training inside as a key part of what I do, but I also ride outside in crap weather.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jcm01 View Post
    Can you watch TV while on rollers...? Thinking about getting some but I also want to be able to zone out a bit (no pun intended) on long rides.
    Yeah, absolutely. It's better to look out at a TV than down at your computer anyway

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by jroden View Post
    i use the inside ride emotion rollers, they are expensive but I use them a fair bit and they are a really, really nice product. I can ride out of the saddle and watch movies without really concentrating much and do 90-120 minute sessions without too much discomfort, which is what I need in the winter.
    +1, I love my E-motion rollers, I have a trainer but I haven't used it in years. They're expensive, but when you look at the fact that they'll last years, the cost isn't too bad. My set has 3-400 hours on it and they still look brand new, no wear, no warping.

  12. #12
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    I've been debating between the two as well and have found a used Kinetic Road Machine pretty cheap so I think I am going that route. I want to preserve my rear wheel as much as possible so was going to buy a "training slick". Anyone have a suggestion for a cheap wheel that I could put on my 29er? I guess I am going to have to buy the cassette as well. It's just much easier to swap out the wheel/tire since I will still be riding outside some.

  13. #13
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    something like this would work for that if your local shop doesn't have some beater wheel:

    BikeIsland.com - Bicycle Parts, Accessories and Clothing at Affordable Prices with Free Shipping

  14. #14
    lgh
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    I would get metal rollers if you are in it for the long hall. I have some old plastic Tacx rollers that I have beat the crap out of. Melted the caps and had to re-glue them. They still work but I would get metal next time.

    If you want to perfect your spin (and who doesn't), the traditional way is to ride a fixed gear on rollers and try to make them hum.

    Larry

  15. #15
    Bro Mountainbiker
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    Its becoming that time of the year

    I think im just gonna be cold and ride outside. There is nothing more miserable than a indoor ride. I cant even go for an hour without losing my mind. I think i would rather brave even the coldest days/nights for an hour at a time than sit on rollers....

    If you get rollers, you will probably need an external resistance machine. I had borrowed a set and I was warming up for a race in 53x11 and still out of gear. Probably couldnt do intervals on it.
    Raised in a Chicken-Coop by Chickens

  16. #16
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    Noob Here.
    I am looking for a bike training for my 29er to ride indoors over the winter.
    If the training will fit a 700cc wheel, will the 29 fit too?
    Any suggestions on which trainer to get and which to avoid?
    Thanks.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by reking96 View Post
    Noob Here.
    I am looking for a bike training for my 29er to ride indoors over the winter.
    If the training will fit a 700cc wheel, will the 29 fit too?
    Any suggestions on which trainer to get and which to avoid?
    Thanks.
    A fluid trainer will be smoother and more quiet, the cyclops and Kurt are the two best ones. They should work fine with your 29 wheel with a slick tire.

    The lemond road machine is nice because you actually remove the wheel, it's loud but has the best "road feel" of any trainer

  18. #18
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    Thumbs up on kurt kinetic

    Kinetic smooth and quiet. Also I like the calibration - you can use it to roughly gage your "steady effort" watts with rear wheel speedo.

  19. #19
    Giant Anthem
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    I just got the travel trac rollers-awesome. They have 3 resistance settings so I was able to do a 30 min time trial on them yesterday. My old trainer did not have enough resistance not to mention the feel of the rollers is wayyyyyy more engaging and feels like your really riding.
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  20. #20
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    Yup, same here. I've only used them once as the weather so far in the SE has been phenomenal, but I enjoyed them. Took me a few tries to get going smoothly but after 5 minutes of playing I was good to go. Guess I have some bike balance skillz from the mountain biking.

  21. #21
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    Just depends on the rider. I've had both and just bought a trainer. The rollers are going on craigslist. I can only handle 2 1-hour indoor sessions per week and so need to maximize the workout with intervals. I can't go full blast on the rollers without falling off, so don't push myself as hard as I do on the trainer. The rollers are great for doing a nice spin for an hour but I get bored easily. I like the trainer so I can put some music on, hit the intervals, and not worry about tipping over while going hypoxic in the garage.

  22. #22
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    I've been riding rollers for nearly ten years, and I can't say the benefits outweigh the drawbacks, just because of the time investment in getting good at them.

    As someone said in another forum, rollers is all about developing skill:
    -Riding straight and balanced, while all movements only contributing to forward motion
    -Developing a smooth spin
    -Riding on rollers no handed, standing, one legged, and/or one legged-no handed, all contribute (maybe) to riding skill, which may increase riding economy/efficiency

    There's a lot of way to get ample resistance on rollers:
    -buy a resistance unit and/or added flywheel
    -lower the pressure of tires
    -stick a towel underneath the rollers

    But the combination of putting high power and balancing (i.e. doing intervals on rollers) may have some added benefit, since it's maximizing power, balance, and efficiency all at the same time.

    But I've been beaten enough times by guys who pedal squares and rock all over the place to really say it's beneficial.
    Last edited by Poncharelli; 12-05-2012 at 12:37 PM.
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  23. #23
    mnoutain bkie rdier
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    Stationary trainers wreck my IT band and knee. I am sure it has something to do with not being able to rock the bike back and forth as you would when actually riding.

    Rollers for the win..

  24. #24
    MSH
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    Quote Originally Posted by wetpaint View Post
    +1, I love my E-motion rollers, I have a trainer but I haven't used it in years. They're expensive, but when you look at the fact that they'll last years, the cost isn't too bad. My set has 3-400 hours on it and they still look brand new, no wear, no warping.
    +2 to the E-motions. Bought mine early 2008 and never used a trainer again. Out of the saddle sprint intervals? No problem. Great customer service as well. One of my bumpers seized up from my toxic sweat and they shipped me out a new, improved set no questions asked earlier this year

  25. #25
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    For those of you that have used power both on the road and on rollers, is the relationship between heart rate and power similiar? When I'm on rollers (or trainers for that matter), really seems that for a given power level, my HR is lower than it would be on the road. So when I'm done with a session on the rollers, my legs are toast but my ave. HR is low?! Sorry for the hijack...but I've always wondered this.

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