FTP (Functional Threshold Power) is a very useful performance metric for cyclists. Not only is it a solid measure of overall fitness, it also determines power training zones for structured workouts. So whether you want to take on a structured training plan or simply track fitness gains over time, your first step should be FTP testing.
There are various ways to test your FTP, but the Ramp Test is the least daunting. It begins easy and only becomes hard in the final few minutes. You can expect 4-8 minutes of hard effort when completing a Ramp Test, making it the least intimidating option for most riders.
There are two ramp tests available in Zwift: the standard "Ramp Test" and "Ramp Test Lite". Ramp Test Lite is for lighter (under 60kg/132lbs) and more novice (<2 w/kg FTP) riders. If you are over 60kg or have an FTP >2w/kg, the standard Ramp Test is probably better for you.
Additionally, ramp tests are a great workout by themselves. Looking for a short, max effort? Want to test your limits? Hop on and crush a ramp test!
Here’s a step by step guide to determining your FTP using Zwift’s Ramp Test.
Begin by selecting the Ramp Test workout:
The first interval is a 5-minute free ride warmup. You are free to ride at the power and cadence you’d like, but we recommend keeping your cadence high and ramping up your power over this interval so you are warmed up and ready for the test effort.
As the instructions say, keep in mind this is a seated test. This test returns its most accurate results when you work to keep your effort and technique consistent through each interval. Staying seated helps maintain this consistency.
After your warmup, the Ramp Test has you perform an ascending series of 1-minute intervals. These begin at 100 watts and increase by 20 watts each minute until you can’t turn the pedals any longer.
Once you stop pedaling, the screen will change:
Click “I’m toast!” or let the timer run out, and Zwift will calculate your FTP based on how far you got into your final interval. Your new FTP will be automatically saved to your profile.
That’s it, all done. Congrats on your new FTP!