If you have ever been with a cyclist coach then you must have come across the term FTP or functional threshold power. This term is very prevalent in the cycling world. A common course of testing fitness and sometimes a source of competition. It may have sounded intimidating to you but what it is and how it works are the major questions coming up in your head. To get the answers to all your queries about FTP, you just need to go through our detailed guide.

What is FTP Cycling?

The first and foremost question is What does FTP stand for? FTP stands for functional threshold power, basically, it is a measure of power that a person can hold for an hour. FTP Power is expressed in terms of watts per kg. This term refers to the efforts that a cyclist is making.What is FTP Cycling?

It is a common metric of cyclists that is usually used by trainers to decide the level of training that should be given to them. Nowadays, advanced training apps also started using these parameters to prepare training charts for cyclists. Regularly taking tests can improve your strength and heart rate as well. A lot of experts also say that  Heart rate training cycling is a must for people to be healthy.

How to Measure FTP?

Measuring FTP is quite an easy process. But you must have some resources for it. Resources are a power meter and a place where you can ride straight for 20 minutes. The test approximately lasts 20 minutes but a standard test procedure would take the time up to an hour. So, here we are providing you with a full guide to measuring FTP power. What you need to do is follow the below steps.

How to Measure functional threshold power

1. Calibrate your power meter.

2. Warm up yourself for 10 to 15 minutes.

3. Ride for 5 minutes with full efforts and then slow down the speed for 10 minutes (with easy spinning)

4. Finally, it is time for all-out effort cycling for 20 minutes. 

Note: You need to make sure that you have pressed the tab button in your power meter to get it started.

5. After effortless riding for 20 minutes. Now, you need to slow down your speed but keep cycling for at least 10 minutes.

In order to calculate your FTP, you need to multiply the average power of that 20 minutes by 0.95. For instance, if your average power is 200 then you multiply it by 0.95 which would sum up to 199 so that is your functional threshold power. A good functional threshold power falls in the range of 200 to 300.

How FTP Works for You?

After knowing the calculation method, it is time to know how it would help you further. FTP in cycling is a must-know test you will ever come across. As this can help you in many ways, a few are listed below. FTP works for you as a heart rate monitor. Through this, you can monitor your heart rate as well.

Sustainability of Efforts Level

Through these tests, you can get an idea of the level of effort you are making. The more you rely on the power meter, the more you get the chance to know about your abilities. You should measure your power abilities, this way you can learn more about yourself.

Sustainability of Efforts LevelMeasure Improvements 

With the help of this test, you can improve yourself accordingly as you will get the improvement report whenever you do a test. If you are working on yourself then you must get the rapport that the training is worthwhile or not. 

Calibrate Training Zones

Through regular tests and measurements of your average power, you can calibrate your training zones as per your need. You should get precise about the training you are doing for yourself for example you can set the specific interval sets and power zones for you.

How to Improve FTP?

Improving your FTP is one of the major tasks that you should look up to. You can only improve when you train yourself regularly, instead of only riding. Here we are preparing a few points through which you can improve your average power measurements. How to Improve FTP?

  • You need to get along with the training process.
  • You need to set your training zones as per your average power. 
  • Use a pedaling tool just to improve your effectiveness. 
  • You need to work on your strengths and abilities.
  • Exercise bikes can help you to improve your score. 
  • Indoor cycling sessions can also help you to improve your score. Nowadays, Indoor Bike Trainer is available everywhere you can also get with option.

There are various options available to you through which you can improve your FTP By not just working hard work but also with entertainment. One of the ways is Treadmills with TV. You can use treadmills with TV as a way to improve your score. 


In a  nutshell, we have fetched each and every single detail regarding FTP cycling. After reading the above article, you must have come to know how to test FTP and how it works out. If you are facing any issues regarding the same then you can connect to us in the comment section.


Q1. What is a good functional threshold power?

The good functional threshold power falls between 250 to 300 but three are exceptions as well. For instance, you can say the pro ones would have a power of 400 watts which is also very good. Higher power can not decide the winner of any cycling race.

Q2. What if my FTP is not good?

You don’t need to stress about it. FTP is more likely to fluctuate as it depends on various factors so if you try testing yourself some other time then it would probably differ from the first. 

Q3. How do I know If my FTP is good?

Good functional threshold power is generally meant to be good when it falls between 200 to 300 watts. 


I am Mike, a senior technical staff writer at O.bike. I have been a professional writer cum editor contributing to thousands of bike-related equipment, books, workshops, and a lot more. Apart from industry-related experience, I love bike hiking and giving workshops.