A bike trainer or turbo trainer is basically a piece of equipment that enables you to ride a bike or bicycle at your home while the system remains stationery. These types of systems are installed at home for exercising purpose, warming up before races or when the outside is not allowing you to take a ride of your bike.
A bicycle trainer is basically made of frame and a clamp type instrument is installed in it to hold your bike’s back wheel securely and steadily. A roller is fitted in it where the rear wheel of your bike is pressed. When you paddle your bike and the rear wheel starts to move, the roller offers some resistance. Now, based on the mechanism of creating the resistance, bike trainers can be divided in two parts described below.
- Wind Trainers – These kinds of bike trainers uses a fan to generate the resistance. Here the roller attached to the rear wheel of your bicycle drives a fan that creates air resistance. These kinds of bike trainers are fairly inexpensive but produce a lot of sound. So, if you can bear the sound produced by a wind trainer, you can have a good training with this one at a low cost. Also, wind trainers come with limited resistance.
- Magnet Trainers – These kinds of bike trainers use two magnets that resist each other, and this magnetic resistance creates the resistance for the roller. The magnetic resistance used here remains at steady state, which means the amount of resistance does not change with time or how hard you are paddling your bike. Most of the magnetic bike trainers available in the market come with a feature that enables you to customise the extent of resistance produced by the magnets according to your preference. These kinds of bike trainers are a little costly, but absolutely quite unlike the wind trainers.
Other than these two old and primary kinds of bike trainers, several other kinds of bike trainers are also available in the market. These are more advanced in feature.
- Fluid Trainers – These are by far the most expensive kind of bike trainers available in the market. Fluid trainers are known for its realistic biking experience in an indoor training facility. Fluid trainers produce progressive resistance, which means the harder or faster you paddle your bike, the resistance increases accordingly. Here a magnetic flywheel combines with resistance chambers filled with synthetic silicone liquid resistant to heat, giving you consistent viscosity of the fluid for almost lifetime. Though the repeated heating and cooling of the liquid may result in leakage, these bike trainers work almost silently.
- Centrifugal Trainers – These types of bike trainers use some specially designed chambers to create centrifugal pressure while you paddle your bike. This chamber is associated with some plates that provide the resistance for your training. These are also very silent while working unlike the wind trainer. Some centrifugal trainers come with customisable options to adjust the resistance.
So, before buying a bike trainer for your training purposes, go through the bike trainer reviews and buy the one that suits your requirements the best.