Trainer Control Modes for KICKR, CORE, SNAP, or BIKE in the Wahoo app

Wahoo smart trainers including the KICKR, MOVE, CORE and SNAP can be used in four different resistance modes: Passive, Target Power (ERG), Resistance, Simulation as described below.  KICKR BIKEs and BIKE SHIFT cannot use Resistance mode due to brake design.


Accessing the Resistance Modes on your Wahoo Smart Trainer:

  1. From the main screen of the Wahoo app, select Record tab in the bottom center.
  2. On the Data Sources screen, select Indoor Cycling, and then Let's go.
  3. Select your preferred resistance mode from the tabs across the top of the screen.
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Once in the workout, changes to trainer control can be made on other workout pages by using the Control button in the bottom right corner.

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Differences Between Modes:

 Each mode provides a different kind of resistance, as described here.


This mode allows the Wahoo app to be used as a mounted display when riding a smart trainer paired to a third party app. The Wahoo app will not send any commands to the smart trainer while in this mode.  In Passive mode, the Wahoo app can connect to multiperipheral trainers (KICKR v4 and later, MOVE, CORE, and BIKEs) and passively record your output when completing your workout in a third party app (Zwift, TrainerRoad, Rouvy, etc).
Note - SYSTM workouts are already present in, and Zwift rides can now be uploaded to, your unified Wahoo activity history.  Speed/distance as recorded in the Wahoo app may also differ from what is recorded in the 3rd party app as it may be calculated differently, based on power, etc.

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Target Power (ERG)*

Target Power mode, also known as ERG or ergometer mode allows you to set your desired power output target and the trainer will adjust resistance to keep your effort at that power output, regardless of cadence or speed.  If your cadence slows, the trainer increases resistance to maintain the target power output. The reverse is also true: when cadence increases, the trainer bleeds resistance to avoid overshooting the power target. With a fast enough cadence you’ll feel very little resistance applied at all.  Decreasing your cadence too much may cause the trainer to apply more resistance than you can pedal through. 

When riding in ERG mode you may notice that speed doesn't seem to relate to your power output or gearing. This happens because ERG mode is designed to maintain the target power at any wheel speed or cadence.  The speed recorded will fluctuate based on the gear and cadence you have selected, and may not be accurate. You may need to try different gears to find which is closest to your desired or expected outdoor speed. We generally suggest using the small chainring and a cog in the middle of your cassette for a quiet chainline.

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Resistance mode allows for fine-tuned direct control of the trainer's brake resistance from 0-100%. Unlike Target Power (ERG) mode, brake resistance remains constant regardless of speed or cadence until changed manually via the app. Think of it like a manually controlled spin bike.

Due to brake design, Resistance mode is not available for BIKE and BIKE shift models.

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With Simulation (Sim) mode you can modify the nominal grade in .5% increments and the app will provide  resistance accounting for your weight as entered into your profile to simulate riding that grade outdoors.  When using this mode, ensure your weight and tire size is properly set in the KICKR's sensor details for accurate power calculations.

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*Additional ERG Settings:

Accessed through the trainer's sensor details

ERG Mode Speed Simulation: This setting simulates speed based on power input for greater accuracy of speed data. Enabling is a personal preference, will not impact overall trainer functionality, and not required (most who train with power are not concerned about speed data).

ERG Mode Power Smoothing: this setting enables smoothing reported power to eliminate small inconsistencies in pedal strokes, making power graphs appear less erratic. Enabling is a personal preference, will not impact overall trainer functionality, and not required.

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