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How Sure Are You That Your Bike for eRacing is Set-Up Correctly?

In this short article, we will ask you some questions to get you thinking about your Zwift, RGT, Veloton, enter any other platform name here, set-up.

Firstly, let’s take a step back and consider what gets the best possible results in an eRace on Zwift or the other platforms. For the uber-serious outdoor racing cyclist or triathlete, what they want is specificity – that is riding within 1 millimetre of their exact racing position. For everyone else, does it really matter? That is if your objective is to get your best possible results in an eRace?

Let me clarify something – we are massive proponents of clean digital data and of course clean riding. What is clear is that on Zwift, people race TTs on a digital TT bike whilst riding a standard road bike in their paincave! If we start here, we can argue that sitting as upright as possible on your paincave set-up, means getting more oxygen in your lungs and more power out to your smart trainer. Aerodynamics is 100% not an issue in a garage at home!

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The benefit of smart bikes is that you can massively play out with your optimum position and the super-serious outdoor cyclist can dial in their racing position.

What is the ultimate eRacing position? It depends on your lower-back strength and it also depends how much money, time, or spannering that you want to put into this.

  • The first thing to try is out of the saddle racing. Warning! This takes practice as standing up for long periods – out of the saddle – means that you will be over your pedals smashing it out and pushing a bigger gear than you can sustain whilst in the saddle. At first, you may find that 5 minutes of this is tough and after time, you will be able to sustain it for much longer periods. Like anything, practice makes habits – good and bad! Comparing this to weight training, let’s call this the squatting method.
  • Check out the cadence of many on ZwiftPower and be surprised at the lower cadences than you might expect (you have to click through to the Strava profile and then analysis)
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This chap knows a thing or two about racing!
  • Getting more recumbent is something that can be tried for those with strong of the lower backs. This is effectively leg-pressing and if practised, you can push a bigger gear and generate more power. Getting out of the saddle to sprint will be slower and trickier and that is the drawback.
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Could a true recumbent bike be the solution for the fast flat courses?
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Steve Bauer rode this bike in the 1993 Ghent-Wevelgem and Paris-Roubaix
  • Do you even need road bike bars? A higher stem, flat bars and with old style MTB bar ends may provide more comfort, an upright position and the ability to get more air in
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Flat bars and just light the stem and add bar-ends
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Experienced eRacers out-of-the-saddle racing

What is the perfect eRacing position? Well, it probably isn’t your standard road bike position. It’s either getting up and over the gears, out-of-the-saddle, or right behind the gears, doing leg presses. It’s either of two methods:

  • Squatting
  • Leg pressing
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The lengths that some people will go to on Zwift!

What method works for you? Please let us know.

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