3 dumb n00b questions

  1. I have a Road Machine 2. When in the game on a “hill” the machine doesn’t adjust for resistance. I note the “speed” going down on the screen, but should I be shifting the gears? On a real hill, I would push an easier gear obviously on the game, should I be adding resistance? (Does it matter?)

  2. When I pick a route in the game, it will say 12.4 miles and it’s a loop. I got confetti but when I looked at the route, I was a little short of the full loop. I did nearly 14 “miles” and started the next strava segment but still never closed the loop.

  3. When random people ride with me (not a pre arranged group ride) are they really riding with me or is the game handicapping one or both of use like Wii might do? Are all the other riders real riders or are some “bots”.

Hi @Steve_Venkman

  1. Sorry I didn’t look up your trainer. If it is a non smart trainer then you should change gears so you can go faster up hill. The trainer should always stay on the spesific resistance.

  2. Yes you will stay on the route some routes have a lead in part so they my be longer.

  3. All riders are real people. There are four bots but they look different.

Gerrie, it’s called “smart 2” but the game doesn’t change the resistance for the terrain. So I’ve kept on the same cadence but the speed has dropped…so you’re saying I should go to an easier gear?

I’ve done a ton of youtube videos where the “hill” requires you to push a harder (smaller) gear in order to pretend I’m on a hill.

If I had a smarter smart trainer, the game would increase the resistance…seems I should be making it harder myself in order to play along honestly, right?

Oh yeah…the other riders…are they doing the same thing that I’m doing? If I’m doing 20mph are they doing it exactly the same? Like in the real world?

It does not appear you really have a smart trainer but a fluid resistance trainer that broadcasts. KK has marketed “Smart” to mean it broadcasts your metrics so Zwift can pick them. “Smart” is supposed to indicate the trainer changes resistance based on the terrain. IMO this is a marketing scam perpetuated by KK.

So your trainer does not adjust based on the terrain. If you maintain the same cadence/power output you will slow down when going uphill. To speed up you need to increase power either through cadence or a higher gear…which is backwards to IRL (unless attacking).

The distance per course in Zwift is misleading because they do not tell you the leadin distance. Check here for actual total distances: https://zwiftinsider.com/routes/

Other riders are all real from around the world…you can even message them if so inclined…

Thanks @chris_benten1. I’m a little disappointed in the trainer as it was a recommendation for this specific activity but I can deal rather than fork out more $ for a different one.

Thanks for the tips on the lead in. In my neighborhood I know when I’m getting close to done. I’ll have to pick the shorter routes to close the loop.

I’d message the other riders but I’m using a laptop and I can’t reach it and usually huffing too bad to write anything coherent.

As non-smart trainer, the KK is fine. I have one and my wife uses it. But with the explosion of Zwift and other apps, the non-smart trainer crowd and the spin-bike mfrs are doing everything they can, including misleading consumers, to join in the fun.

You can also message through your phone/tablet via the Companion app.

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I think that the fact that it broadcast power makes it smart. Those that changes resistance is called smart controllable. But since all trainers these days are smart and controllable we just talk about smart.

But the KK is a awesome fluid trainer it has a very nice power curve.

I know people that has used that trainer for years.

You will just do the opposite in Zwift than IRL and you will get used to it very quickly. So when goin up you will go to your bigger front an small rear gears.

A lot of racers put their smart controllable trainers to 0% trainer difficulty for races, witch makes it the same as your trainer.


Anybody can broadcast…even Schwinn. Broadcasting is Dumb/non-Smart. But you have to be Smart to be Controllable. Controllable is hard and it takes real brains to get that to work…ask Schwinn (I know, I know…I am picking on Schwinn…could be KK or some others). Calling a broadcasting/Dumb trainer “Smart” is the marketing to fool consumers.

Only a few Smart companies around…

Note: This is all Tongue-in-Cheek…mostly…I am aware that the nomenclature has changed over the last couple of years but I have hope eternal…Marketing strikes again!

I have a KK Road Machine (none “smart” version) and I use it with my SRM power meter. So a similar setup.

As the trainer is a fluid based resistance the resistance is based on a flat road. So on the flats in Zwift the feel and speed is much like in real life. When you go up hill you would need to simulate the additional resistance by increasing the gear. If you want to. If you don’t and you still output the same power can cadence you would slow down in the game much like you would in real life. Increase your power and/or cadence and you’ll go quicker. :slight_smile:

The KK Road Machine is a pretty solid trainer. If you want realistic feedback you’ll need to look at the Smart Controllable trainers like the Wahoo Kickr or Tacx Neo (among others).

For chatting and getting more out of Zwift you should download the Zwift Companion app on your phone. You can control a lot of what’s happening in game from the phone and it makes the experience that much better. No need to reach for the mouse then. :slight_smile:

@Adam_Roberts_unfitsp. I’ll look into the companion. I’ve read the reviews that.its a little buggy. Not a big deal if just an add on but if it messes up the workout, no bueno.

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Not had any issues with it. Great way to interact with Zwift, does so many things the Desktop app or Website don’t do.


It could be better but then so could the site and the Desktop app. :slight_smile:

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Ok downloaded it. Tested it. Yes this is way cool!

Now I need to mount my phone on the bars.

Do you have a bike computer already, like a Wahoo or a Garmin? I bought a self adhesive adapter for the back of my phone case, like so:

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Oh, I don’t wanna do that. Like a pop socket. Nah, I’ll get some big rubber bands! Or the ram mount from my motorcycle. :wink: