Kinetic by Kurt, better know as Kinetic, is quite a famous indoor bicycle trainer manufacturer well known by cyclists across the world. The American company has long been a mainstay in the trainer business with its very characteristic green trainers.
Interestingly, Kinetic started out manufacturing the metal frames for another famous trainer brand CycleOps and then pivoted into making their own brand of trainers with some solid investment into Research and Development. Kinetic has been making some solid trainers ever since with a slew of innovation.
We will be deep diving into the Kinetic Rock & Roll Indoor Trainer today.
Kinetic decided to take the road less traveled (or not traveled at all) way back in 2007 when they made a trainer that sways from side to side as you ride. Most trainers work hard to simulate an absolute road like experience and the Rock & Roll technology created quite a stir as this let the trainer rock from side to side when sprinting or climbing simulating a real-life feel of riding a bike.
The Kinetic Rock & Roll is quite a successful trainer sold by Kinetic in India. While the unconditional lifetime frame warranty is a huge plus for all Kinetic trainers, the Rock and Roll technology are what riders appreciated the most.
The Kinetic, unfortunately, does not support two-way communications with third-party apps and does not come with a controllable resistance feature. Scaling a 10% gradient climb in Zwift? Well the trainer will not automatically increase resistance to match the incline and make you grunt all the way to the top of your climb!
- Comes fully assembled – you can pick up the trainer from the bike and ride away without any installation setup
- Pairs with your devices using Bluetooth Smart
- Compatible with Zwift, TrainerRoad, and Kinetic Fit
- Stable, solid and durable trainer
- Replicates road feel very well
- Large diameter roller
- Progressive fluid resistance
- 6.25-pound flywheel for smooth pedal strokes
- Two-year warranty on inRide sensor and lifetime warranty on frame
- Compatible with the Kinetic Pro Flywheel
- The frame accommodates 22” to 29” wheel sizes
- Measures speed, cadence, distance, power, calorie burn & heart rate
Kinetic has a patented guaranteed leak-free resistance unit, which they use on all their fluid trainers. In case you’re not aware, one of the biggest issues with sub-standard fluid resistance trainers is fluid leakage. The fluid resistance unit in the Kinetic Rock n Roll is completely sealed and only connected to the flywheel and roller via a magnetic coupling. That coupling is so strong there’s no danger of detaching it with a sprint effort or serious power, and the fact that the unit has no moving seals means there’s very little that can go wrong.
The other standout feature of the Rock and Roll is that the whole of the trainer assembly is isolated from the base by a rubber bumper, which allows the bike to move about when you’re climbing all over it on a hard effort. The movement keeps you focused on your workout and replicates an off-the-saddle effort on the road. It is highly unlikely that your mind will wander when your bike is moving on the trainer. The movement utilizes your core muscles giving you a thorough core workout.
The trainer’s wide footprint and 19kg weight mean it stays put even when you’re wobbling about on top. It is on the heavier side for a fluid trainer of its category. You can adjust the amount of side-to-side movement by tensioning up the bolts holding the top section to the bottom.
If you’ve head about Kinetic before then you know that they’re known for the best ride feel in the market. Their superior fluid resistance units are engineered to very high standards and are super accurate and durable.
1. ROCK & ROLL TECHNOLOGY
The Rock & Roll system used by Kinetic here is one-of-a-kind. You’re not going to be able to experience this anywhere else. If you’ve been on a indoor trainer before then this might feel strange the first time around.
How it works is that the base of the trainer is essentially joined to the rest of the frame using an elastomer pivot that causes swaying as you ride. The movement tries to replicate cycling on the road. The movement utilizes your core muscles giving you a thorough core workout. The amount of wobble is adjustable by tensioning the bolts.
The Rock and Roll has a wide and stable base. Although the trainer wobbles while doing hard efforts, the base does not move. You might feel a little unsafe but that is just a feeling —you have no reason to be scared. Moreover, Kurt Kinetic frames are among the best in the industry, meant to support your weight perfectly.
Of course, there’s only so much a trainer can do to give you the experience of riding outdoors. You are for the most part staring at a wall while pedaling indoor. We personally feel that the rocking movement is a nice and fresh feeling brought into the world of indoor trainers. It feels interactive and actually make a difference.
Kudos to Kinetic for thinking out of the box!
The pre-installed inRide sensor in the Rock & Roll makes it possible to pair your trainer with your smart devices through Bluetooth Smart. It also lets you access the most popular training apps like Zwift, Kinetic Fit, and Trainer Road for varied and fun workouts. In addition, you can collect and analyze your workout data (speed, cadence, distance, power, and heart rate among others) from your phone.
One drawback we found was the lack of connectivity protocols. The trainer only supports Bluetooth pairing which limits users to the kinds of other accessories they use. Would have been nice to see the inclusion of ANT+ pairing.
3. FLYWHEEL & ROLLER
The new unit is quieter than ever before and the 2.8kg flywheel delivers smooth pedal strokes. The trainer’s stainless steel roller is 2.5 inches in diameter; bigger than most rollers around. It reduces the temperature of rotating parts and causes your tire to wear less. It’s also rather quiet – we used a dedicated trainer tire for our tests.
Something to note is that the trainer tends to feel a little sluggish off the start. The silicon fluid inside needs a little bit of a warm-up – not much, just a little 3 – 5 minute spin. This will improve the accuracy of the trainer’s power readings too. Also, don’t worry about overheating on this unit – the 80 cooling fins do a great job of keeping temperatures in check.
Power on this trainer is calculated based on the wheel speed as opposed to direct measurement. Contrary to what you may think, this hardly affects the accuracy of the Rock and Roll as its accuracy is well inline with the claimed accuracy of +/-2%.
The power accuracy is what impressed us the most – not many trainers can boast of such accuracy at this price point. You may encounter minor inaccuracies during sudden RPM changes or while really pushing the trainer to the edge but that’s expected.
The Kinetic Rock & Roll can accommodate all kinds of bikes. Bikes equipped with thru-axles can use the Kinetic Traxle thru-axle adapters. They have something for almost any bike out there that won’t typically work on a stationary trainer. From BMXs, to track, to road or mountain bikes they all fit. By doing some simple adjustments, the trainer frame can accommodate any bike.
Accuracy: +/- 5%
Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.0
Max Resistance: 2000 Watts
Max gradient simulation: 20%
Thru-axle compatible: Yes
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WHAT I LOVE ABOUT CYCLING
I’m an avid mountain biker and I like riding fast and flowy singletrack. As I keep riding, I continuously work on honing my riding skills. I like to ride whenever possible, especially with friends. I also like to influence folk into getting to ride more often.
Working on bicycles has also been a keen interest of mine for quite some time.
DISCIPLINE: Mountain biking and Road biking
CURRENT BIKE: RockRider 5.3 & Specialized Allez Elite DSW
DREAM BIKE: Santa Cruz 5010