This is my comparison of TrainerRoad vs. Wahoo SYSTM – two indoor cycling apps focused on improving your performance.
I tried both apps, and in this article, I explain how they differ, their benefits and cons, and which one you should choose.
Here is a quick spoiler:
If you are a hard-core cyclist or a time-trialist, you should try TrainerRoad.
If you appreciate sports diversity (you cycle, swim, run, etc.), download SYSTM.
Continue reading to find out more.
TrainerRoad and Wahoo SYSTM Summary
TrainerRoad and Wahoo SYSTM are apps both focused mainly on improving your fitness. However, they differ in the way they achieve it.
TrainerRoad is suitable mainly for cyclists and time-trialists, while Wahoo SYSTM also includes other sports like running, swimming, or yoga, forming an ecosystem for a wider range of athletes.
In the following table, I summarized their most important features.
|Sports||Cycling||Cycling, running, swimming, yoga, and more|
|Screen||Ride data only||Ride data + video|
|Workouts & Structured Plans||Yes||Yes|
|Based on||Functional Threshold Power (FTP)||4-Dimensional Power (4DP)|
|Training Personalization||Yes (Adaptive Training)||Yes (Based on your 4DP)|
|Platforms Availability||Android, iOS, Windows, macOS||Android, iOS, Windows, macOS|
|Free Trial||7 days||14 days|
|Price||19.95 USD / month|
189 USD / year
|14.99 USD / month
129 USD / year
Updated on the 11th of July, 2022.
Let’s now dive deeper into the individual features.
TrainerRoad is super simple. During your training, you will only see your ride data.
Everything else is focused on planning and analyzing your efforts. The following pictures are from the TrainerRoad web app. However, the desktop (and mobile) app offers the same features.
Wahoo SYSTM is a little more diverse. Here are a few pictures from my Full Frontal test that determined my 4-Dimensional Power.
SYSTM also includes other activities like Pro Rides or On Location and training programs for other sports like yoga (more about them later).
Use a cycling rocker plate to take your indoor training to the next level. Learn more about how they can benefit your training experience in this article.
Workouts & Structured Plans
If you are looking for an indoor cycling app that can create a structured training plan for you, SYSTM and TrainerRoad are the best choices.
They differ in the main metrics they use to help improve your performance.
TrainerRoad uses traditional FTP, while SYSTM relies on 4DP (your 20-min, 5-min, 1-min, and 5-sec power).
According to SYSTM, the 4DP is more comprehensive and better for determining your rider type because of the test complexity.
Here are my results of the Full Frontal test:
SYSTM then creates a structured training plan based on your goals and other criteria.
The following picture shows that SYSTM can mix multiple sports, providing you with more complex training.
TrainerRoad differs a little. It uses your FTP, so once you complete the FTP test, you jump to a training plan builder and set the criteria.
Then, it also creates a structured training plan. The main benefit is that you can also complete the rides outdoors, and Adaptive Training can change them based on your fatigue and other data.
Naturally, both apps have workout libraries, so you don’t have to follow any structured plans, and you can do workouts based on your mood.
TIP: Get a fan for indoor cycling to stay cooled down and squeeze the maximum out of you.
One Big Benefit of Wahoo SYSTM
The biggest advantage of Wahoo SYSTM compared to TrainerRoad is its versatility. It can combine multiple sports into your training plan. When writing this article, its library included:
- Strength training
- Mental training
So, if you want to be a more versatile athlete, SYSTM is a clear choice.
TrainerRoad and SYSTM are super easy to use. I like their user interfaces the most of all the indoor cycling apps I tested.
They are simple, intuitive, easy to understand, and clean. Both apps are responsive, load quickly, and don’t freeze.
For example, I don’t find ROUVY or Zwift so user-friendly.
TrainerRoad and Wahoo SYSTM are available on all major platforms, including iOS, Android, macOS, and Windows.
Remember, they are not focused solely on your improving performance but also on making indoor training more entertaining.
Zwift is one of the most well-known indoor cycling apps. It is a game that uses many gamification elements, has a big community of users, and immerses you in its virtual world. You can also participate in group rides or races, do structured workouts, and more.
ROUVY is known for its comprehensive routes library. You can choose from thousands of places worldwide. ROUVY augments it with your avatar and other objects. You can also do group rides, races, or structured workouts.
TrainerRoad vs. Wahoo SYSTM: The Winner
TrainerRoad and Wahoo SYSTM belong to the best apps for improving your (cycling) performance.
If you are a pureblood cyclist who cares about his FTP and is self-motivated to improve it, download TrainerRoad. Its algorithm will create a training plan based on your goals and other criteria you set.
Additionally, the app counts with your outdoor training (if you sync it with a third-party app like Strava) and adjust your training plan based on your fatigue, etc.
If you prefer a more comprehensive approach, feel free to try Wahoo SYSTM. Its benefit is that it can combine multiple sports like cycling, running, swimming, yoga, etc. This makes it ideal for a wider spectrum of athletes.
SYSTM also has a module for training your mental strength. This unique feature helps you become more motivated and mentally resilient.
I like both apps, but I lean towards SYSTM thanks to its comprehensiveness and diversity.
What about you? Which one will you use?