Kinetic Rock and Roll Review

I bought one of these trainers in September as it had good reviews for its fluid resistance unit and I wanted to see what the side to side movement was like and thought it might add a new dimension to riding to the TurboTripping videos.  I’ve been using a Wattbike for the last three years.

The unique feature of the Kinetic Rock and Roll is that it allows the bike to lean from side to side.

Kinetic Rock and Roll videokurt kinetic rck and roll

Kinetic claim that the main benefit is that it enables to you to ride out of the saddle in a more natural way.  However it also provides a more natural feel when you’re seated.

The movement can be adjusted by turning two bolts to either tighten or loosen the tension.

First Impressions

The unit has two support legs that provide a wider support than the usual trainer and they are easily removed when not in use.

Resistance is provided by a oil in a sealed unit and a fairly heavy metal fly wheel.  Once you start pedaling the feel is smooth and it’s noticably quieter than most of the trainers I’ve used. Adjusting the resistance is done by changing gear so there’s no lever to mount on your handlebars.  This works really well.  Change into a harder gear and you have to pedal harder, change to an easier one and you have to pedal faster.  How simple could it be?

One issue I did find was that I felt as though the bike was leaning over to the right even though the bike was well positioned over to the left of the roller.  This may have been due to the bike I’m using but I did correct it by slightly turning the bars to the left.

Using it with the TurboTripping videos adds a new dimension as you can lean the bike round the corners. At first this required a bit of exaggerate upper body movement but now that I’ve loosened off the tension bolts and probably got used to the unit, I can get the bike to lean in a more natural way. It doesn’t actually lean that much but it feels more than enough.

I loosened off the tension bolts even further so that it’s quite a balancing act to get on the bike and once seated it’s difficult to keep the bike upright if the wheels are not turning.  This makes it even more like riding a proper bike.  I must add that I weigh 60kg/130lbs so if you’re heavier, and taller it might not be the best idea to loosen the bolts too far! With the added flexibility it required a smoother upper body movement to tilt the bike.

Pedaling Technique can be improved as any upper body movement or an over exaggerated pushing down on the pedals will cause the bike to rock. I also find that the constant resistance gives the legs an even better workout and feels similar to riding up a gradual gradient so should benefit your hill climbing technique.

Cornering technique.  What? On an indoor trainer?  Well it might sound daft but after a few of sessions testing out a new video I found that my transition and timing between corners felt nice and sharp once I got back on the road.  One part of your technique that will improve on the RnR is your counter steering as it forces you to push down on the inside hand to get the bike to lean over.

Kinetic Riser Ring

Kinetic make a riser for the front wheel that rotates. Unfortunately these were not available when I ordered my Rock and Roll so I have been using a fixed Elite riser. I’ll review the riser when I get to use one.

Kinetic InRide

It can be used with the Kinetic InRide powermeter which is a small gadget that fits onto the trainer and once linked to your iphone/ipod will give you reasonably accurate power information.  A shame it doesn’t work with other platforms such a Android and Windows. Another unfortunate decision they’ve made is that it’s not Ant+ compatible.

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