Indoor cycling may lack the fresh air and panoramas of riding in the great outdoors, but it’s still a very effective way to exercise and train. Just because you’re riding stationary doesn’t mean you can’t calculate your power or track your performance as effectively as you would riding roads and trails.
What is a power meter?
Bike Radar writes that “a power meter is a set of moving scales that measure your power output”, telling you in watts “how much energy you’re putting through the pedals at any given moment”.
Power meters are more accurate for performance tracking because they don’t rely on subjective data. For example, a cyclist’s heart rate can vary from session to session and may be influenced by fatigue, mood, illness or dehydration.
For outdoor cyclists, differences in terrain and weather conditions will also play a role, making it difficult to judge whether or not a ride went well accurately. Using a power meter to track functional threshold power is one way to ensure you’re performing consistently, especially when following a training plan.
Indoor cyclists don’t need to worry about the weather or different terrains, but many still want an accurate and consistent picture of their fitness and progress.
Can I buy a stationary bike with a power meter?
Yes, you can.
And you’ve got several options. You can buy an indoor smart bike with a built-in power metre like the electricity-generating RE:GEN. We added a power metre to the Ohm battery so riders can see at-a-glance whether they’re cycling in the green zone or whether they’re underperforming for their FTP.
You can also buy a power meter for your existing static bike (you may need to buy a trainer with this, too). According to the Cycle from Home website, two types are suitable for indoor bikes: pedal and crank power metres. Although, it does advise riders to check the compatibility of crank power meters with their static bike before purchasing because some indoor cycling bikes don’t have the right bracket on the bottom to attach a crank power meter.
Pedal power meters are most likely to be suitable for indoor bikes and are the most popular. They’re easy to install and use, especially if you’re using them on another bike too.
You also have the option to buy a smart trainer for your bike. Smart trainers measure power slightly differently from power meters, and they’re more expensive, but they offer variable resistance, making them popular with many cyclists.
Ready to ride the RE:GEN? Put down a deposit today to secure your electricity-generating indoor cycling bike with a built-in power meter.