Written by Daan

Which bike trainer do I need?

If the weather outside isn't that great but you still want to go biking, a bike trainer is the solution. Simply attach your own road bike or mountain bike to a trainer and you can get started. But which one do you need? On this page, the most important differences are explained. Each trainer matches a specific type of biker. Carefully check what's best for you and make your choice!

Direct Drive interactive bike trainers

For the most realistic indoor training, you use a direct drive bike trainer. On these bike trainers, it's possible to cycle with heavy resistance and simulate high inclination percentages. In addition, the trainer communicates very quickly with applications, making the interaction almost without delay. You don't have to use a training band because you attach the bike to the trainer without its wheels. Partly because of this, the noise level of a direct drive trainer is relatively low.

  • Very precise reading of your cycling performances.
  • Possibility to train with a steep incline.
  • Interaction with software is in real time and very fast.
  • The noise level is lower than with other trainers.
  • Direct Drive trainers are relatively expensive.
  • You usually need to use the power grid to use the trainer.

Wheel-on interactive bike trainers

With a wheel-on interactive bike trainer, you have more options for a realistic cycling experience. Because you usually use AC power, the brake is more powerful, making the resistance heavier and more realistic. Moreover, it's possible to connect applications to the trainer. As a result, the resistance adapts to the route you take in an app in real time. You use your own rear wheel with a trainer tire on a wheel-on trainer, which makes relatively much noise.

  • Realistic bike feeling through powerful electric brakes.
  • Possibilities for interactive training with applications.
  • Your cycling performances are easy to track.
  • A wheel-on trainer makes relatively much noise.
  • Recording your power is less accurate than with direct drive bike trainers.

Basic bike trainers

A basic bike trainer is a starter model bike trainer that you can use without power. It's not possible to keep track of your cycling performance without separate accessories. This makes basic bike trainers especially suitable for a warm up or a fitness training. A basic trainer has a manual switch at the handlebar that you use to adjust the resistance. In addition, you always leave the rear wheel on your bike. That's why you have to use a trainer tire to prevent wear of your tires and minimize noise while driving.

  • The bike trainer can be used without AC power.
  • Suitable for basic training or warm ups.
  • Lower price than other trainers.
  • You can't record your performance without other accessories.
  • The brake mechanism feels less realistic.

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