Controllable smart trainer not working in training


  • Direto X
  • Apple TV HD 2021

Whenever I select a freeride, my Direto X is controlled perfectly fine.
Whenever I select a training, it acts as a dumb trainer, and power is not controlled.
I can switch between training and free ride at any given time, the outcome is always the same: controlled in free ride, not controlled in training.

Not using ERG mode.
ANT+ not an option on Apple TV.
Tested both with Companion and built-in Bluetooth.

Hi @Martijn_Cielen

Welcome to the forum

Do you say you don’t use ERG mode? If yes then your trainer is doing as expected, when not using ERG you have to adjust the resistance using the companion app or the on screen menu bar.

Hi @Martijn_Cielen

Thanks for sharing your concerns, and I’m happy to help!

As Gerrie implied, if you’re not using ERG mode, then the smart trainer (Direto X) won’t produce any resistance whatsoever during workouts (e.g. Training). When ERG is disabled in workouts, the terrain will always simulate a 0% (flat) gradient and there will be no changes in resistance. Once you toggle ERG on, you should be getting resistance but only in response to your efforts to reach power targets.

I suggest this article, which has a more detailed explanation of ERG mode and what you can expect.

If ERG isn’t behaving as expected, you’ll want to have a look at the troubleshooting in this article.

Otherwise, I see that you already reached out to our support team in a recent chat, so once our team responds via email, feel free to reply and our support techs are happy to work through any other issues with you.

Ride On.

You are still be able to increase the resistance of the trainer. So I would not say any resistance, It will only produce a flat line of resistance as set by the user, by using the companion app incline button or the onscreen menu bar.

Replying to all at once.

If any of what you say is correct, then why does it 1. produce resistance in sim mode when coupled with ANT+? And 2. Produce resistance when not using ERG mode in Freeride?

" Sim mode is simulator mode. This is the mode used in all Zwift activities other than workouts. In Sim mode, the controlling software (Zwift) sends parameters like rider weight, air density, gradient, and wattage to your trainer. The smart trainer then tries to replicate the “feel” of that virtual ride environment through its resistance on your drivetrain."

ERG is for holding power, not for simulating gradients.

That is correct. In ERG mode Zwift will control the trainer to adjust the resistance so that you are putting out the desired wattage target (and will adjust the resistance accordingly if you change gears and/or cadence). If doing are workout NOT in ERG mode, though, it is up to you to change gears, resistance, or bias manually to achieve the desired wattage target. Zwift will not control the trainer at all for you. (For what it’s worth, just use ERG mode for workouts.)

In SIM mode Zwift will control the trainer to simulate the terrain. (SIM mode should be the same as what you call ‘when not using ERG mode in Freeride’.)

So… sim mode only works in freeride?

Correct. Workouts are just about wattage targets, not terrain. What you will see in a workout, though, is that the in-game speed of your avatar will change with regard to the terrain, even though what you feel on the bike doesn’t change. The advantage (well, I see it as an advantage, anyway) of using ERG mode is that you can just find a gear and cadence that work for you (small chainring, middle of sprocket works best for me) and stick with that for the entire workout while Zwift adjusts the trainer resistance to the correct amount needed to hit the segment target.

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Thanks for the correction. You’re absolutely right, as I forgot about the incline button as a means of marginally adjusting resistance when ERG is disabled.

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Oh wow. That was absolutely not clear to me. :slight_smile:

As a beginning cycler I’m mainly focussing on heart rate right now, and use a workout plan that offers different trainings (cadence, power, endurance, you know the lot). I always thought I could do these with sim mode. :confused:

No problem @Steven_D

I have been using Zwift on a “smart trainer” that does not have ERG abilities so I go really good at adjusting the resistance using the ± buttons on the KB.

I think 90% of users never used workouts out of ERG and changed the resistance manually.

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