It’s hot, damn hot! Stop the sweat, get a cycle training fan. There is a wide range of fans to choose from and while there are no best fans for indoor cycle training I will give you pointers of what to look out for when buying a fan. There is no need to spend a lot of money.
Hot hard training.
What a training session, the best yet! It was hot and hard and look at the pool of sweat on the floor, proof that I’ve trained hard… result.
But that is wrong, yes you have trained hard and yes you did get hot but it was your overheating that made it hard… You could train better and harder if you stayed cool, with the bonus of less sweat to clean up afterwards.
Those of you who never used a fan before but now have upped your game and train harder probably with a cycle training app you would benefit by using a Zwift cooling fan to keep your cool.
The easiest way to stay cool is with a fan. But all fans are not the same, size does matter (yes you could get one that is too big!) and not all fans blow air the same.
I have looked at many indoor cycle training set ups and researched forums to come up with the most popular fan used, I tell you why they work for bike training and why these are the ones to look for and which fans should be avoided and why.
What type of cycling trainer fan?
The main type of fan used by cyclists while training is usually an axial household fan, but these come in two varieties:
Non directional fan
OK not quite non directional you can direct the air flow after a fashion but the air that is produced sprays around the room, which works well for most people training but once you start to really up your game with intense workouts people have found that they start to become less effective at cooling and so they have to get bigger fans.
This is why you will see a lot of people recommending that you need a fan of 16” or more. With an increase in size you get more noise, which can be a problem for some. There is an alternative below.
Because we stay in a static place on the bike trainer a true directional fan comes into its own. These are smaller, quieter and force more cooling air onto you in a controlled way, these are now becoming a favourite with indoor cycling trainer setups. They also have the bonus of being cheaper than a larger non directional fan.
Use the Dyson fan for indoor cycling
Just to throw an extra option at you, there is the very different and stylish Dyson tower fan. This is a directional fan but the air blown at you covers a larger top to bottom area. I saw this one recommended on forums but I could find no reviews of it being used in a training session, however if you wish to check it out here is a link to Amazon.
You can get a fan that is too big! Yes really, a large fan can blast you and make you too cold and uncomfortable making for a poor training experience. Also a large fan can make a great deal of noise, not a problem to someone with head phones plugged in but to others it may be a concern.
Get a fan that is too small and you are not going to get any overall benefit however I have seen set ups where a small fan is used to directly cool the face.
What to look for in a turbo trainer fan.
We have established that we probably need a small directional fan but there are other concerns and extras to look for.
Noise level may be a problem for some. If you find a fan you like you can check its noise levels over on YouTube (there is usually a review for most makes).
Having a fan with adjustable speeds is also a bonus; this will allow you to have more control over your temperature while you train.
There are now fans which are remotely controlled and these are extremely useful. You don’t want the fan on when you start training as you will be already cool, it’s only when you have warmed up that you want the fan to blow on you.
This would stop a common complaint that I came across where some people moaned that they had to stop training, get off the bike just to turn on the fan.
If you find a fan you like that doesn’t have a remote built into it, there is a work around. You can get a remote for your electric plug socket to turn the fan on and off. For an example I have linked one here.
A feature that kept cropping up was the need for a stable base as many kept knocking theirs over! I suspect that this was from them adjusting the angle with a stick, so maybe a stable base or a remote would be of benefit here.
How to set up your fan
I have looked at a lot of indoor training setups and a noticeable difference between an amateur and a professional one is the placement of the fans. You would have thought that placing the fan directly in front of you would be just like riding outside.
However a more professional set up will have the fan off to one side so that more of your body surface area is affected making the fan much more efficient at cooling you.
Do you need two fans?
A common fan set up I saw was the use of 2 fans, and these also were commonly set up in 2 configurations.
The first was to use a large non directional fan directed at the whole body with a smaller one blowing on the face and head.
The second combination is with 2 small directional fans, one blowing over the lower body and the other toward the upper body but aimed to miss the arms which can sometimes get too cold during training.
My recommended indoor cycle raining fan.
There is no one best cooling fan for Zwift or other cycle training systems but I have seen the following is the most popular in cycle training rooms and they cover most points above.
The fan below is the most commonly recommended by other cyclists who train indoors because of the following features:
- They blow a lot of air in the place that it is directed at.
- It is small
- These are quiet
- 3 speed settings
- Best of all cheap
But unfortunately they are not remotely controlled so you will have to get a remote for the electric socket if you want that feature.
USA – Honeywell HT-908 Turbo Force Room Air Circulator Fan
- I have included a link to amazon if you wish for more information.
UK – Honeywell HT900E Turbo Fan
- I have provided a link if you wish to check it out on Amazon.
Check out the video below for a review and sound level check on the Honeywell Turbo Fan
Summary of best fans for indoor cycle training
As I have shown you above there is no one best indoor cycle trainer fan but there are some features you should look out for when choosing the fan for your pain room.
Size – some people may have to train in a small enclosed space and a large fan just won’t fit or end up being too close.
Quality of air flow produced
Noise level – you can probably check this out on YouTube. Some of you may want to listen to music or the TV while you train and having the sound drowned out is not desirable
Price – Nearly always a factor.
A remote is a great feature and who wants to stop riding mid race / ride?
If you find a turbo trainer fan that meets all or most of these criteria you should have a great cooling experience.
I hope you have found this post helpful, you will find more here at Biketrainerstands.com I hope you will check them out.
Protect your bike. Another overlooked essential extra is a sweat net! Check out my post on bike thongs here.