Wahoo Kickr Axis Review | Wahoo KICKRmat, Trainer Floormat too

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Wahoo Kickr Axis Review | Kickr Floor MatWahoo Kickr Axis Review | KICKRmat Floormat

I thought that a review of a mat was pushing it a bit so the timely arrival of the Wahoo Kickr Axis action feet set was a good excuse to combine some thoughts on both the Wahoo KICKRmat Floormat and Wahoo’s new ‘road feel’ feet, retro-fitted on my Wahoo Kickr17.

Here’s a quick summary and you can scroll down to the details further below.

 

Wahoo Kickr Axis Review
  • Price - 70%
    70%
  • Build Quality & Design - 90%
    90%
  • Ease of installation - 95%
    95%
85%

Wahoo Kickr Axis Feet Upgrade - Verdict

The Kickr Axis Feet upgrade is DEFINITELY an improvement for all pre2020 KICKRs. However, it delivers only a slight improvement and I hoped for more. That said, I’m happy enough as the comfort levels on my indoor rides have improved once I get over the hour.

Pros

  • Axis gives a comfier, quieter ride with a better road feel but perhaps not as much as you hoped for.

Cons

  • Axis is about 5mm higher, you might need to dust off your old riser for the front wheel
  • Not compatible with CORE and SNAP models
Wahoo Elemnt Roam Review
Shop Wahoo – Choice of Retailer Partners

Wahoo Kickr Axis Feet – Why? An expensive mat – Why?

The Kickr Axis feet claim to give a more natural feel to riding indoors by allowing lateral movement of up to 5 degrees. I find riding indoors over one hour to be a little uncomfortable, so I have some hopes of the new Axis feet helping me out here.

The claims for the Wahoo KICKRmat Floormat are that is waterproof, antislip and noise-reducing. I don’t have a need for any of those other than to protect the wooden floor in my pain cave.

In The Box

You get all the bits you need to replace the 4 points of contact that your Kickr has with the ground each of which has more cushioning than previously. You will also need a small Allen wrench and a Phillips screwdriver as well as they are not supplied. The instructions that come with it weren’t great but it was obvious to me what to do, someone at Wahoo needs to get some tips from Ikea for the documentation.

And the mat? Well, it’s just a mat. It’s only 0.24″ thick and for some reason I had imagined it would be thicker with a bit more cushioning; it’s more like a very sturdy yoga mat rather than one of those larger, thicker mats you sometimes get in gyms.

Choosing Your Kickr Axis Feet

Here you can see an example of the new Kickr Axis Feet on the left. They have a notably bigger footprint and you can compress the grey rubber by several millimetres with your hands. Contrast that to the original Kickr feet which feel almost solid.

Wahoo Kickr Axis Review | Kickr Floor Mat
Left-New Foot|Right-Old Feet

When you choose which of the 3 replacement feet you want to use, you are only choosing which black spacer goes on top of the grey rubber foot. So you are supplied with a total of 3 spacers and one grey rubber foot supplied for each of the Kickr legs aka ‘outrigger feet’.

The choice of spacer comes down to your weight. If you are 63kg-81kg (141-181 lbs) then you use the medium-sized spacer that is installed by default. So if you are lighter than 61kg you choose the smaller spacer and if you are heavier than 81kg you choose the largest.

You could perhaps gamble that using a smaller spacer than recommended would give more lateral movement than claimed by Wahoo.

Installing the Kickr Outrigger/Side Feet

For Kickr Gen 1, Gen 2 and Gen3 (Kickr18 and earlier)

  • Use the alternate nuts+bolts that come supplied without the rubber cushion.
  • Take the grey rubber off the bolt it comes fastened to and switch it to the alternate bolt
  • Add your spacer of choice (image above shows the small spacer at this stage)
  • Switch the existing blue lock ring from your existing Kickr to the new, alternate bolt
  • You’re good. Screw it in, repeat for the other side. Done

Installing the Kickr Front Foot

Simple. Unscrew the old one, take it off. Put the new one on and screw it on.

Installing the Kickr Rear Foot

Simple. Use an Allen Wrench/Key to remove the two inner bolts and their washers, then switch the feet over. Don’t touch the two larger, outer nuts.

 

Going For a Ride on my New, Modified Setup

I was standing on the mat with my bike shoes that have Shimano cleats. I mention that as they have pointy bits on the end which left indentations in the mat. I was immediately sad that my new mat was peppered with holes. Happiness returned within a few minutes as the mat is made from some sort of heavy-duty memory foam and the original shape returned.

After mounting the bike I immediately noticed that I was leaning forwards and pointing downwards. Not by much but the Kickr is now higher than it used to be. I have a riser so it’s not a problem, I just wasn’t expecting that. Important: The new bolts are about 5mm longer and I really could feel that difference.

The Kickr Axis feet on their own do dampen a bit of sound on hard wooden floorboards and the Kickr Mat dampens it even more, not that the setup was that noisy in the first place.

I’ve pootled along for over an hour a few times and I can’t say that the ‘ride feel’ is noticeably different at any given time. I can’t really feel the 5-degrees of rocking. However, the discomfort in my hips/core IS improved over those durations. So I’m a happy bunny.

Wahoo Elemnt Roam Review
Shop Wahoo – Choice of Retailer Partners

Specifications – Wahoo Kickr Axis & KICKRmat

For those of you with an attention to detail

Wahoo KICKRmat Specifications

  • Size: 36″ x 78″
  • Thickness: 6mm
  • Water Rating: Water-Resistant
  • Material: 6P free PVC

Wahoo Kickr Axis Review – Specifications

Not compatible with CORE and SNAP models

Pre-installed on KICKR20

  • Shipping Weight: 2 lb
  • Box Dims: 8.7 x 5.3 x 2.75 in // 22 x 13.5 x 7 cm
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 5.3 x 2.75 in // 22 x 13.5 x 7 cm
  • Weight: 2 lb
  • Max User Weight: 250lbs // 114 kg

 

Buy Wahoo Kickr Axis Review- Price, Discount & Availability

I’ll update the link to add choices of retail outlets over time. At the time of writing, November 2020, they are only available directly from Wahoo Fitness.

Here are the prices and links.

Wahoo Kickr Axis FeetUSA 80, UK £65, Eu80

Wahoo KICKRmat, Trainer FloormatUK £70, USA $70, Eu70

Alternatives

  • Mid-Priced, highly-rated, quality floormat c$50 – on Amazon
  • Cheap floor mat, claims suitability for bike usage c$25 – on Amazon

 

Wahoo Elemnt Roam Review
Shop Wahoo – Choice of Retailer Partners

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usr

“You could perhaps gamble that using a smaller spacer than recommended would give more lateral movement than claimed by Wahoo.”

I doubt that: heavy riders using a smaller spacer would sink deeper into the rubber from gravity alone. They won’t bottom out with a sudden stop like a cheap suspension fork, travel/force curve of compressed rubber feed will be highly nonlinear. But this nonlinearity will have the effect that heavy riders on small spacers are getting less travel from a given amount of force change because most of the available travel is already used up by the static part of the force.

PS: unfortunately I’m in the rubber business myself right now, apparently downstairs neighbors do hear my Neo 😥 – perhaps getting distracted by your little spacer riddle will help me find a good solution (I think I still have some downstairs-neighbor’s-ear-protection rubber somewhere from back when I was doing absurdly loud rollers)