Wahoo Kickr erg resistance too high


I’ve just completed the Tempo to Sprints workout on my Wahoo Kickr Bike and when the watts increase from 135 to 450+ its impossible to pedal, I need to stop pedalling and then I can bring the watts and cadence back up to the required level. I’m using ERG mode for this.

Does anyone else have this issue? Would be good to know if it’s Zwift or the bike where the issue is.



Hi Simon - thats quite a specific issue and I havent seen any reports similar. No other issues with resistances in rides or elsewhere in the workout?

Are you sure your not just having the Spiral of Death (not anticipating the changes and the resistance kicks in before you’ve had a chance to increase your cadence)?

Hi Dean, it happened each time there was a big jump in power and I was ready for most of the jumps with either higher cadence or higher power (obviously power was limited due to erg in the lower power segments) My max power output is around 1000w, I’d be surprised if I couldn’t make 500. This is probably the biggest power difference, between intervals, I’ve ridden on my new trainer and I’m concerned it’s a problem with the trainer.

Similar max to me so yes, you should be fine. I’ve not done a workout for a few weeks but generally I do HIIT sessions when I do, so I have similar jumps. Oh I just realised you are on the Kickr Bike - I had thought it was a Kickr.

Probably done this too but I’ll ask - have you calibrated with the Wahoo app?

@Andrei_Istratov You have a Kickr Bike - noticed anything like this?

I’ve had this problem on my previous Wahoo Kickr V4 trainer. Towards the end of the workout as the trainer got hot, it got progressively harder to pedal and I’d end up in first gear on the bike, standing. I put a high power blower fan on it to keep it from overheating and that did the trick. I probably should’ve contacted Wahoo about getting it fixed but the fan worked fine. I’ve got a Kickr Bike now and haven’t experienced that problem in workouts. Well other than I’m so blasted at the end of the workout that I can’t turn the pedals…

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Yes, if the next interval is much higher in power than the previous one, it can be very hard to increase the power quickly enough to not lose cadence and along with it lose the ability to even turn the pedals. My best known method in the ERG mode is to start increasing cadence some 5-7 seconds before the power increase. In ERG mode, power does not change when you increase cadence, so it is easy to bring the cadence up. Then, when the resistance increases rapidly, I lose some cadence, but if I started high (e.g., 100 or more), I will probably not drop the cadence too much.

I can easily do a step from 150 watts to 400 watts using this method. It gets a little sketchy when it goes to 450 watts. Above it, it becomes a matter of luck and there is a good chance to fail. One either needs to turn off the ERG mode before the step in power and ramp the power gradually while switching the gears, or create a custom workout with several small steps with increasing power target, 1-2 secs each, for the ERG mode, to be able to ramp up the power smoothly and gradually.

It is neither Zwift nor bike. It is an unnaturally steep increase in the power target - a workout which is poorly written for indoor cycling purposes. The Sufferfest recommends in the beginning of intervals with such large difference in power that they users DO NOT do them in ERG mode but switch to the level mode instead. You just go to the max which you can reach, and this max may very well be below the target. Zwift leaves it up to users how to handle such situations, but to be fair, Zwift does not have too many workouts with such a huge change in power between intervals. Or, at least, I did not run into them yet - but I did many such workouts in The SUF!

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Thanks for the responses! I feel better about it now. I’ve got a similar workout, in terms of power jumps, tomorrow, I’ll give some of the suggestions here a try to see which is best. I’m guessing switching off erg will be the best solution, but that requires thought on my part :smile:

My kicker just block, I am hardly able to move my paddle, I have first generation wahoo kicker, I did all spins including factory spin any advice?

It sounds like your kickr is locked up completely, that’s different to the issue I had. Mine locked up briefly due to a large increase in watts. If you are unable to pedal at all I would suggest contacting Wahoo support.

@Mohammed_Harb Exit Zwift.

Connect to your KICKR with the Wahoo App.

Find the app pages where you can control the resistance in terms of resistance, percent, gradient, or power. Turn all these values to something low, and be sure to leave from any screen that isn’t the one in which you enter a power on the three spinning wheels.

Be sure you can turn the pedals.

Leave the app

rejoin Zwift.

Mine does this as well. The thing is, I don’t fall into the category that Simon is describing. My jumps were far more discreet. On Zwift, I was doing Emily’s short mix which saw me take a jump from 250 to 290. As soon as I lost rhythm a little the resistance on the trainer went on to a point where physically standing on the pedals and trying to apply all my strength got me nowhere. I’d say that for a sprint I can apply between 700 and 750W and on some of the Zwift “just ride” courses I can regularly be maintaining above 300 so a couple of minute stint at 290 shouldn’t be a problem. For me, I was already maintaining the 290 pace then got distracted and the power just went on harder and harder until I was forced to stop and wait a second for it to back off.
Surely this can’t be by design?

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Did you find a solution because the same is happening to me?

I’ve not had the issue again, but I’ve not done a ride since with such extremes of power increases. I’ve done a ride recently on TrainerRoad that has spikes of from 200W upto 400w and there was no issues then. In hindsight I am thinking I just wasn’t having a good day and couldn’t live with the power increase.

Thanks for your reply - its been happening to me for a few days - definitely not just a bad day. There is no way I can push pedal down even with whole body weight.
I’ve also read it can happen after doing FPT which is what I did.
So I’m not sure if its Zwift or the Wahoo kickr that’s the problem?

I might also try TrainerRoad - looks good.

I mean FTP

I am experiencing the same issue with Zwift/Snap 2. Every single ride I calibrate it. There is a big increase in resistance on climbs and intervals. No such issues with Trainerroad.
I have tried everything, including a complete reset, it goes back to normal for 2 rides then the same issues persist.
I have commented on a few forums with no reply from Zwift.

same for me - cannot work out if its the Kickr or Zwift

same happens to me - is it the Kickr or Zwift?

I have a similar issue since a two weeks or so. When I get to an incline of 13/14 percent it becomes unrideable and I have to stand up and use massive amounts of power to try and push the pedals. This did not use to be the case, so I am unsure where the issue lies…
I can push high power outputs on percentages up to 12 but when it gets to 13/14 it is like a 10-fold on power is needed…