The Clefty freakin' Boys
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Northeast USA
Bikes: Tommaso Ti frame w/dura ace, KHS flight 500, Myata 110, Motiv Rockpoint softtail, Motive Cross Creek Hybrid.
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I have a stationary trainer and rollers. I've always used the stationary but this year decided I wanted to try the rollers.
They have taken me a while to get used to but I do enjoy them (the rollers) much more than the stationary. They are very different and I'll try to define that a bit.
If you ever rode your bike on ice when you were a kid that's kinda what rollers feel like to me. When you make any kind of move with your handlebars there is a delayed reaction and then the rear of the bike moves (or more like slides). The difference is it feels like it's going to slide out from under you (just like riding on ice) but doesn't (as long as you keep pedaling and don't panic).
When I ride I set up the rollers in a doorway so that when I get on my bike my shoulders are pretty much centered to the middle of the door jam. While I'm clipping into my pedals I hold onto the top of the door frame with both hands (if you get on the bike from the left hand side clip into your right pedal first and vice versa). I then start to ride and when I get my speed up to about 15 mph I drop down onto my handle bars one hand at a time. If you grip your bars hard you will probably fall off the rollers. I try to keep a very loose grip and make very small steering adjustments. (If you ride without your hands on the bars the bike will track almost perfectly straight) I'm getting to the point now where I can get my water bottle and move around on my handlebars without too much trouble. If you keep your eyes fixed on an object in front of you that helps as well. The only thing I can see that I need to work on is I tend to drop my head down and look at the rollers or the floor. As you might imagine, this could be rather detrimental out on the road.
Also, I have a very large van that I've hung from the floor joists (I ride in my basement) that's about 3 feet in front of me and blows into my face/upper chest area.
My biggest concern going into the rollers was that of rolling resistance. I thought they'd be too easy. I've found quite the contrary to be true, the resistance is quite stiff and, if you stop pedaling, your wheels stop almost immediately (then you fall over). My top speed on rollers has been 40 mph. After that I get too much tail sway and end up all over the place. They definitely teach you not to bounce in the saddle!
I hope that's been some help.