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FTP 20-minute Power Test Protocol


It’s that time again! Each quarter we’ll bring you a little more information on FTP testing so you can continue to test and maintain an appropriate FTP value for your training.

There is a lot of opinion that a 20-minute FTP test is THE “proper” FTP test. The truth is that true testing can only really be done in a lab, but that there are a variety of tests to be done outside of the lab and each has it’s uses for different populations. Providing you’re using a metric to benchmark your training zones that is derived from a well-established and thoughtful test then that’s great. When you use a new test protocol, remember it’s only truly comparable to a result acquired from the exact same testing protocol. Make sure to compare oranges to oranges and apples to apples to check your improvements. So here it is! If you feel that you or your riders are at a stage where you can give this a go then we’d love to hear from you. It’s a tough one. Don’t be too aggressive in the first half and don’t be too weak in the second half.


This is definitely a workout you’ll have to build towards, so we’ll assume you have taken an FTP ramp test or 5-minute FTP test and are comfortable working to this metric for extended periods. Set up your console in Power Training mode and ensure your color is on to guide the initial “warm up” aspect of the test process.

Ride the warm up and main set using colors to guide your intensity. When it comes to the ‘FTP effort’ use the lap button (bottom right of console) and record your full 20-minute effort. Once the 20-minute effort is complete simply press the lap button again to end the lap. Before reviewing the results, complete your workout using color to guide your effort. It’s important during the 20-minute effort to ride as hard as you can manage for the duration. There are lots of different ways to do this but essentially, you’ll be hoping to ride at 105% of whatever power you expect your FTP to be. For example, if you’re expecting your FTP to be 300 watts then you would need to average 315 watts for the duration of the 20-minute effort.

Once the workout is completed then you can pause the workout and look at laps which can be found below summary in the workout paused screen. Your laps will indicate distance travelled, average watts, maximum watts and total lap time. You’ll need to look at your average watts for the 20-minute lap as this forms the basis of the equation to ascertain FTP from your 20-minute effort. Take the average watts (for example 315 watts) and multiply the number by 0.95. For example 315 watts x 0.95 = FTP of 299.25 (rounded down to closest whole number. FTP = 299 Watts.

The above workout can be used in a class scenario and is scheduled to last 60 minutes.

Good luck!

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