How does strength training help improve your FTP?

August 21, 2023 2 min read

strength training to help with your ftp

How does strength training help improve FTP?

Strength training is a valuable tool for cyclists to improve their FTP. Here's how it works:

1. Increased muscular endurance: Strength training exercises, such as squats, lunges, and deadlifts, target the major muscle groups used in cycling. By strengthening these muscles, you can improve their endurance, allowing you to sustain a higher power output for longer periods.

2. Improved pedal stroke efficiency: Strength training helps correct muscle imbalances and improves overall muscle coordination. This leads to a smoother and more efficient pedal stroke, reducing energy wastage and improving power transfer to the pedals.

3. Increased power output: Strength training exercises, particularly those targeting the lower body, can increase your leg strength and power. This translates to a higher FTP as you can generate more force with each pedal stroke.

How to incorporate strength training into your cycling routine?

Here are some tips to help you integrate strength training into your cycling routine:

1. Start with a solid foundation: Before diving into intense strength training, ensure you have a good base fitness level. Focus on building cardiovascular endurance through regular cycling workouts.

2. Consult a professional: If you're new to strength training, it's advisable to seek guidance from a certified strength and conditioning specialist. They can help design a program tailored to your specific needs and goals.

3. Prioritise compound exercises: Compound exercises, which involve multiple muscle groups, are highly effective for cyclists. Squats, lunges, deadlifts, and step-ups are great examples. Aim for 2-3 strength training sessions per week, focusing on these exercises.

4. Gradually increase intensity: Start with lighter weights and gradually increase the load as your strength improves. It's important to maintain proper form and avoid overexertion to prevent injuries.

5. Don't neglect recovery: Strength training can be demanding on your muscles. Allow for adequate rest and recovery between sessions to avoid overtraining and promote muscle growth.

Equipment to Consider

1. Squat Rack

The squat rack is a versatile piece of strength training equipment that allows you to perform compound exercises such as squats and lunges. These exercises target your lower body muscles, including your quadriceps, hamstrings, and glutes. By strengthening these muscles, you can generate more power during your pedal strokes and improve your FTP.

2. Leg Press Machine

The leg press machine is another excellent tool for targeting your lower body muscles. It specifically focuses on your quadriceps and glutes, helping you build strength and power. By regularly incorporating leg press exercises into your strength training routine, you can enhance your FTP and pedal with more force.


Improving your FTP through strength training is a smart strategy for cyclists looking to enhance their performance. By incorporating targeted exercises into your training routine, you can increase muscular endurance, improve pedal stroke efficiency, and boost your power output. Remember to start gradually, seek professional guidance if needed, and prioritize recovery for optimal results.

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