Top age grouper and triathlon geek Matt ‘the Pumper‘ Palmer finally makes his debut for Trizone (after hounding us for more than two years) with a preliminary review of the new Wahoo Kickr. We dropped it off to him on the way home from Port Macquarie after Ironman Australia. We have heard school girls with lower-pitched squeals.
Wahoo Kickr – Getting a workout
The Wahoo Kickr is the first iPhone powered bike trainer on the market and is without a doubt a game changer. I was lucky enough to saddle up and ride the dream machine for the first time this morning, and it lived up to everything I had heard/read and more. This report is a just first look at the Wahoo Kickr, but over the coming weeks, I will be putting the Kickr through its paces with a variety of sessions as I lead into Ironman Cairns and providing a more detailed rundown on the finer details of the Kickr.
Getting started is super easy.Download Wahoo Fitness App (Free), plug into the power socket, remove the back wheel from your bike, sync the iPhone and you are riding indoors with power. Very simple. Works straight out of the box, which is a win for many of us. From there the ride was very smooth and was the closest simulation to riding on the road I have experienced on a home trainer. Through the iPhone and the Wahoo Fitness App I was able to control the Kickr in four different ways:
- Resistance levels: 10 levels built, each with a progressive resistance curve, just like riding outside. For example, the faster you pedal, the harder it gets simulating rolling and air resistance.
- Erg mode: With the KICKR, you can set a target wattage, and the KICKR will remain at that wattage as you ride independent of speed and cadence. This is the ultimate way to train with Power.
- Sim mode: With sim mode, you can enter your weight, bike type, riding position, headwind, and grade and the KICKR will accurately model the power curve just as if you were riding outdoors.
- Full manual mode: For those of you who need to be in control, this allows you to adjust resistance of the brake manually from 0 to 100%
I started the session using a resistance level and then reverted to full manual mode later. Power, Heart Rate, Distance, Cadence, Speed and time information was all easily displayed on the iPhone. Data from the session, once completed, was then quickly transferred to a variety of options including Strava and Trainingpeaks. See output below:
The Wahoo Fitness App is just one, and there are others available that I have not yet explored including:
TrainerRoad.com is an online community focused on providing cyclists incredible structured workouts and training programs. Check out www.trainerroad.com for more information
Compatibility: Latest generation Apple laptops and desktops with Bluetooth 4.0 built-in. Older Macs and MacBooks with a BT40 dongle Windows machines with ANT+ USB stick (control mode via ANT+ not available yet).
Kinomap is an online sharing site of geolocated videos. Choose a video of your favourite Tour stage or race course and Kinomap will control the KICKR as you watch the video, matching the resistance to the elevation of your virtual ride. Check out trainer.kinomap.com for more information.
Compatibility: Any iPhone with Bluetooth 4.0: iPhone 4S, 5; iPad 3 and newer; iPod 5G and newer; iPad mini. Older iPhones/iPads can collect data with the use of an ANT+ adapter for iPhone
iMobileIntervals is an iPhone app and online system for performing workouts and collecting, displaying and sharing data. KICKR support is a natural fit for iMobileIntervals, with intensity zones in its structured interval workout mode providing the wattage value for driving the trainer in ERG mode. Check out imobileintervals.com for more information. You can download the app from the app store here.
Compatibility: Any iPhone with Bluetooth 4.0: iPhone 4S, 5; iPad 3, iPod 5G and newer
Any ANT+ head unit
The KICKR broadcasts speed and power (wattage) via ANT+. Any ANT+ enabled bike computer, such as a Garmin Edge, will be able to read the data from your KICKR.
There is a variety of new Apps being developed including the Wahoo Strava App that will allow Kickr users to ride their favourite Strava segments indoors. The Kickr will automatically simulate course conditions from the Strava file. This again will completely revolutionise indoor training.
How to Order? (Australia)
Wahoo Fitness is now taking KIKCR reservations for Australia for late May shipment! Just sign up on one of the lists below to have your name added to our list! The price will be 1299.99 AU with 39.99 AU shipping including GST.
We are only taking reservations, and not credit card information at this time. We don’t believe in collecting payment in advance for a product that isn’t on the way to your front door. While we are confident in our date, a boat can sink, a train can derail and burn (it’s happened to us), or your credit card can expire.
When the KICKRs arrive in our warehouse, we will ask for your payment information and send you a confirmed ship date. We will fulfil reservations in the order in which they are placed.
Once you place a reservation, we will keep you up to date on progress and timing of delivery. After we understand demand based on reservations and our wholesale pre-orders, people will be assigned an order batch.
Stay tuned for more updates on the Kickr over the coming weeks.