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Zwift – The World of Virtual Cycling

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Zwift – The World of Virtual Cycling

Zwift is a very popular multiplayer online cycling and running game and training program that enables users all over the world to interact, train and compete in a virtual world. 

Zwift is more than just a game, it helps you train, race and have friends join in virtually for a virtual night ride. All you need is your bicycle to start with. You can buy 3 version of Zwift, The heart rate power meter at $40 is simple to use and inexpensive, the PowerCal provides a low-tech ticket to ride the wild world of indoor cycling. The Magnus Wheel-On Bundle at $630 is the recipe for a great smart trainer with an easy connection to Zwift, quick responses to mimic virtual terrain and drafting, and a wide range of resistance. Finally we have the Hammer direct drive bundle at $1,260 is a smart trainer which is renowned for its rapid response and accurate power readings. A 20-pound precision balanced flywheel replicates the feel of real-life roads, adjusting for hills and terrain changes in a flash. Just pop off your rear wheel, put your bike on the Hammer, and Ride On. 

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All 3 products come with a Zwift membership for a few months. After that the membership cost $10 a month. Using the power meter alone will accurately communicate your riding power to the Zwift. Using the Hammer drive smart trainer will make sure the trainer interacts with the Zwift and not only tells the system how hard you pedal but the resistance in the pedals will increase/decrease in uphills/downhills and also when slipstreaming. The Zwift Mobile app is synced with the main system which acts a remote control for various features such as turning direction, messaging fellow riders and showing hand gestures. Just make sure the mobile app and the main Zwift system is connected to the same Wifi internet connection. 

Coming to the main USP of the Zwift, the Routes! There are 3 different routes, 1 fantasy and 2 real world virtual routes. The Watopia, South pacific Paradise is the fantasy one which has 8 routes with 42kms of road in each route. The first real world route is from Richmond, Virginia on the 2015 UCI World Road Race Championships course which includes cobbled climbs. The second real world route is the 2016 London Prudential Ride course and comes with 2 modes, riding through all the famous city landmarks and also a route through the country side. 

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The display screen when connected to a computer screen or a TV will have a Zwift display with loads of features around the corners while your virtual self is cycling the middle of the screen. The display data includes Power beats per minute, revolutions per minute, current speed, distance elapsed, current elevation, time since you started, climb gradient graph, list of rider names with distances between each of the riders. 

Zwift is not just competitive races and leisure rides but they also have training courses. These training courses have preset programs but they are customizable as well. One can also customize how their virtual avatar looks like with a wide range of apparel to choose from. Also there is a downloadable ride report with a detailed breakdown of numbers which can also be synced to other riding apps like Training Peaks, Strava and Today’s plan. 

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There could be various reasons why a cyclist wouldn’t be able to go outside to ride like weather, body condition etc. The Zwift is a great console gaming system which merges the best of gaming and cycling to give a mind blowing experience of virtual cycling. 


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