XP for climbs

I understand (I think) how TD works.
I use a dumb trainer so no real experience.
The above conversation misses my point.
If TD made little difference, I would expect to see podium winners with TD set all over.
I get the sense that races are won , almost exclusively, by riders with TD set 30 or less.

  1. Is that statement accurate?
  2. If so, then there is a difference.

I’ve never heard this, though I don’t know how you would confirm it one way or another since it’s not something you can see on ZP correct?

So many races in Zwift are flat enough that I wouldn’t expect TD to play a major role - I wouldn’t expect myself to do better in a typical Zwift race by lowering my TD further (I’m at the default 50%, and don’t ever feel the need to drop it lower) because I’m pretty much never even close to using up my gears on a typical Zwift race.

I’d suggest that max advantage is dependent on the course. If you have a course where the ‘hills’ are short rollers at 3-4% max, then a higher TD setting might make sense – I think you’d look for a setting where you can just continue to push the same cadence thru the hill without having to shift, relying on short-term power bursts. If the course has longer hills and/or larger gradients, then a lower setting would get you closer to this target.

That’s been a common perception for a while (set at ~30%) for racers (I have no idea if “lots” or “a few” do it however). I do. If I can avoid a minor momentum drop when hanging on for dear life up the leg snapper or libby hill for eg, then the difference could be you don’t get dropped on the descent that follows.

So, taking leg snapper as an example. I would imagine you still need to shift gears at 30% correct? Or are you saying that gearing is perfect for keeping a consistent cadence without changing gears for that style of a hill in a race. I always find I need to shift a bunch for leg snapper, but I still have a lot of gears left, so the issue of not having a low enough gear is not the thing that comes into play, but I have to think I’d still need to shift, just not as much.

For leg snapper as eg, I’m already in the right gear well before as I power up on the flat - the 30% probably avoids a gear change for me if I get that leadup and leg snapper section just right.

I dont discount that the benefits are all my head though, but it works for me :crazy_face:

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Sometimes when I read this forum I wonder if the posters have ever ridden a bike outside. It seems certain some have never ridden a real climb.

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Sometimes when i see people playing call of duty i wonder if they have ever really killed a man.


I’ve understood this to be common practice for years.

You can find instances of people discussing it and explaining why on this forum and elsewhere.

e.g. Lower trainer difficulty for racing? - #10 by Mark_Murawski

most racers probably set it to about 20-25% from what I have heard. I keeps your effort more consistent overall, but it also allows you to push much more on downhills when you otherwise might spin out too much. I usually ride at 40-50% so I can keep it in the big ring and don’t have to shift as much.

Or What’s the Best Zwift Trainer Difficulty Setting? | Zwift Insider

So how do I handle my personal Trainer Difficulty setting? It generally stays around 30%, except when I’m doing a flat TT and remember to bump it up to 70-100%.

But it’s by no means universal.

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