Zwift, the online system that allows you to ride 3D courses with other cyclists from around the world via your turbo trainer and computer, is moving to a paid for subscription service and adding a new Workout Mode of structured training.
Up until now riders have been able to use the beta version (software that’s still in development, prior to full general release) of Zwift without payment but from 29 October there will be a non-contract pricing structure of £8 per month in the UK (US$10 elsewhere).
In the existing version of Zwift that has been available for the past year you can compete on Strava-style segments and go for King of the Mountains times, but the Workout Mode is an entirely new addition aimed at improving your fitness.
“Zwift’s structured training or ‘Workout Mode’ will focus on gamifying the training experience to make it more inspiring and engaging,” says Zwift.
“In the beta version that will be released later this month, riders will experience newfound levels of motivation as they receive encouragement from other cyclists on Zwift’s virtual course. In the year since Zwift launched, the community of riders pioneering this new form of indoor cycling have expressed a high level of interest in structured training. Zwift’s first step to offer workouts that are highly social and inspiring will provide a point of departure for users to train on Zwift.”
The beta product will offer you a selection of workouts. It will start with some pre-programmed workouts and will move to supporting user generated/created workouts.
Other Zwift users will be able to see when you are doing a workout by colour coded hologram screen out front, so they'll know when you're giving it a hard effort.
The beta mode of structured training, like the new subscription pricing, will be introduced on 29 October.
If you signed up and downloaded Zwift before this month, you’ll be in line for a founding member virtual kit when these changes are introduced. Zwift allows you to customise your image on the screen to a degree. You can now virtually ride the Canyon Speedmax CF SLX (below), for example.
Zwift says that over the past year riders from over 100 countries have put in more than 300,000 rides covering over 4.5 million miles.
For more details go to www.zwift.com.
Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been road.cc technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now pushing 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.