Ask Levi: How Can I Ride Indoors During The Winter?

As you get more interested in cycling, you may want to keep your fitness up through the winter. But you might not want to ride outside in the cold, wet weather. So you wonder about riding your bike inside

I wont be able to ride my bike outside much this winter-so I was hoping to find a way to ride it in my house!

Do you know of a devise that enables you to ride in place-with the existing bike? As in – not an exercise bike. I was hoping there would be something I fasten to the wheels or something or even to the frame. I cant seem to find anything but people tell me of them. Any help would really be appreciated! Thanks.

You’re in luck, because I know exactly what device you’re looking for!

Actually, there are two different options for riding your regular bike indoors. And neither of them involves an outdated exercise bike!

The two options are known as a “stationary trainer” (or “indoor trainer”) and “rollers.” Here’s a quick summary of each one:

cycleops indoor trainer

A stationary trainer is a device that attaches to your bicycle’s frame and presses a roller against the rear tire, holding the bike upright and allowing you to pedal against resistance (so that it feels realistic.)

In other words, the trainer turns your bike into an exercise bike.

Trainers are great for beginners because they are stable, and they’re great for doing hard interval workouts because you can dial up the resistance for a hard workout.

The big downfall is that a trainer can be hard on the rear tire. So if you get a trainer, buy a cheap (replaceable) tire to go with it.

Rollers consist of three cylinders (or drums, or rollers) connected by a frame. You place your bicycle on top of these drums and ride your bike, much like you’d run on a treadmill.

cycleops rollers

This experience can be difficult for beginners because it requires good balance and a smooth pedal stroke to stay upright. However, riding on the rollers gives you that road-like feel of actually riding (as opposed to pedaling a stationary object.)

Personally, I prefer rollers over stationary trainers. But you might find that a trainer is a better fit for your needs.

To decide which is best for you, take a look at my article on the pros and cons of trainers and rollers. It goes into more detail about each option, so you can pick out the right one for you.

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2 Comments so far

  1. shirley on June 7th, 2009

    this is what i’ve been looking for. but didn’t no the name. thanks

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