Notices
Indoor & Stationary Cycling Forum From spin to Zwift to Peloton, this forum is dedicated to any and all indoor training on stationary bikes

Zwift alternatives

Old 11-28-22, 02:30 PM
  #1  
ilovebiking
Newbie
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: West TWC metro
Posts: 21

Bikes: Currently 2013 Kestrel 4000

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Zwift alternatives

Hello! I have been a Zwift user for about 5 years and use it most days in the off-season. It has been fine, but I am getting a little tired with it and wanted to ask for suggestions for a good alternative, just to try something new. I currently use a Wahoo Kickr. I like the interactive format of Zwift, just wanted to try a different experience. Any good suggestions? Thanks in advance.
ilovebiking is offline  
Old 11-28-22, 03:35 PM
  #2  
PoorInRichfield
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Richfield, WI
Posts: 640

Bikes: Trek Domane SL7 Disc, Cannondale F29

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 351 Post(s)
Liked 264 Times in 161 Posts
Last year I tried almost all the major Zwift competitor platforms using free trials and coupons and long-story-short, I'm back on Zwift. The only other platform I somewhat enjoyed was Rouvy as it's not really a Zwift competitor in that the appeal is "virtually" riding in places you've never been by watching someone's recorded ride videos versus Zwift's virtual worlds. I'd occasionally see other virtual riders on there, but they were far and few between and the concept of group rides and the like didn't exist.

The problem for other Zwift competitors is that Zwift got such a huge head start that almost all the other platforms hardly have any riders. I got really bored with riding by myself almost all the time in fake/virtual worlds. Then there's platforms like Wahoo's that try to be everything to everyone and in my opinion, fail for everyone. I.e., I'm only interested in a cycling app, not an overall fitness app.
PoorInRichfield is offline  
Old 11-28-22, 06:00 PM
  #3  
kcjc
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 150
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 33 Post(s)
Liked 20 Times in 13 Posts
RGT, MyWhoosh, & Onelap. I was using RGT and its Magic roads for a few years until wahoo took over recently. Wahoo haven't tweaked it yet as far as I know. I quit it because I just don't care for wahoo. Onelap is ok but pretty lonely and limited road selection. I'm using MyWhoosh currently. Look and feel is pretty close to Zwift but don't have as much roads to choose from. Workout editor needs work. Its free.
kcjc is offline  
Old 11-29-22, 08:03 AM
  #4  
La Tortue
Full Member
 
La Tortue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 231
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 37 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 32 Times in 25 Posts
As a five year user you most likely have but I will mention just in case. You have gone the Zwift Power route, joined a club and participate with your team in events such as the ZRL? If not this is an avenue you might like to try. Without Discord and the group aspects Zwift wouldn't even be Zwift for me.
La Tortue is offline  
Likes For La Tortue:
Old 11-29-22, 10:26 AM
  #5  
msu2001la
Senior Member
 
msu2001la's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Midwest
Posts: 2,436
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1208 Post(s)
Liked 1,200 Times in 708 Posts
Alternatives that I'm familiar with:

TrainerRoad: Pure training app, not a simulator. If you love doing structured workouts and focused training, and find all the "video game" stuff on Zwift to be annoying/distracting, this is probably a good one to check out.
Rouvy: Real world video routes are cool, but only a few options and small user base.
RGT: Similar to Zwift, but the physics are a bit more realistic (i.e. you can't ride through other riders and have to actually pass them. Riders slow down/brake in corners on descents. Etc). The people I know who are on this app use it specifically for racing. The race leagues on RGT I'm familiar with require weigh-ins, dual power data streams, power data verification, etc and are more tightly controlled than Zwift races.
msu2001la is offline  
Likes For msu2001la:
Old 11-29-22, 12:26 PM
  #6  
blacknbluebikes 
Senior Member
 
blacknbluebikes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: NJ, USA
Posts: 1,062

Bikes: two blacks, a blue and a white.

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 367 Post(s)
Liked 610 Times in 297 Posts
Seriously, you could try "horrible weather outdoor adventure man" as an alternative. I'm not being snarky, though I do love to do that. You could approach off-season as a new persona, like "skier on a bike." Maybe a hard-tail mountain bike with full cold-weather kit, face mask, super gloves, shoe covers, the works. Snow, sleet, salt, storms, you don't care, you're sasquatch on a bike, IRL... Not that unusual around here, lots of posters are nasty-weather players. You said "something different" ... And no one seems to be saying that any of the alternatives are that good.
blacknbluebikes is offline  
Old 11-29-22, 01:41 PM
  #7  
himespau 
Senior Member
 
himespau's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 13,232
Mentioned: 32 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3732 Post(s)
Liked 2,541 Times in 1,514 Posts
Originally Posted by La Tortue View Post
As a five year user you most likely have but I will mention just in case. You have gone the Zwift Power route, joined a club and participate with your team in events such as the ZRL? If not this is an avenue you might like to try. Without Discord and the group aspects Zwift wouldn't even be Zwift for me.
This is what keeps me going in Zwift as well. Accountability of a team. Races that get me pushing my limits on a regular schedule (back to that being accountable to a team bit). People to interact with.
himespau is offline  
Old 11-29-22, 02:04 PM
  #8  
spelger
Senior Member
 
spelger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: reno, nv
Posts: 1,816

Bikes: yes, i have one

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 886 Post(s)
Liked 936 Times in 539 Posts
Originally Posted by msu2001la View Post
Alternatives that I'm familiar with:

TrainerRoad: Pure training app, not a simulator. If you love doing structured workouts and focused training, and find all the "video game" stuff on Zwift to be annoying/distracting, this is probably a good one to check out.
Rouvy: Real world video routes are cool, but only a few options and small user base.
RGT: Similar to Zwift, but the physics are a bit more realistic (i.e. you can't ride through other riders and have to actually pass them. Riders slow down/brake in corners on descents. Etc). The people I know who are on this app use it specifically for racing. The race leagues on RGT I'm familiar with require weigh-ins, dual power data streams, power data verification, etc and are more tightly controlled than Zwift races.
i've gone through other riders before. not a big deal. to the OP: try RGT, they offer free routes daily but what they do offer is limited. and speaking of limited, their routes are very limited...about 10 or so routes, that's it.
spelger is offline  
Old 11-29-22, 06:46 PM
  #9  
kcjc
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 150
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 33 Post(s)
Liked 20 Times in 13 Posts
Besides racing, Magic roads is where RGT really shines. Paid version. You ride any route up to 100km in a four hour window. I would recommend smoothing the gpx file first before submitting to RGT central. GPXmagic is really good but I generally clean up the horizontal first using GpsPrune. You can include up to 99 bots and invite others to join. Existing user's route can be found at RGT DB, https://rgtdb.com/Courses. A few are really well curated but most are just ok. You can find organized rides, races, and results on the site also.
GPXmagic Labs
https://activityworkshop.net/software/gpsprune/
​​
kcjc is offline  
Old 11-29-22, 06:49 PM
  #10  
dmanthree
Senior Member
 
dmanthree's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Northeastern MA, USA
Posts: 1,645

Bikes: Garmin/Tacx Bike Smart

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 630 Post(s)
Liked 275 Times in 181 Posts
Originally Posted by ilovebiking View Post
Hello! I have been a Zwift user for about 5 years and use it most days in the off-season. It has been fine, but I am getting a little tired with it and wanted to ask for suggestions for a good alternative, just to try something new. I currently use a Wahoo Kickr. I like the interactive format of Zwift, just wanted to try a different experience. Any good suggestions? Thanks in advance.
I use Rouvy and really like it. Nowhere near as many riders as Zwift, but a really nice selection of routes, and enough controls to allow you to make the experience (hills, etc) similar to Zwift. Downsides? you are restricted to the chosen route. Because it's video there's no freelancing. But some of the rides are really nice.
dmanthree is offline  
Old 11-30-22, 03:16 PM
  #11  
Ed Wiser
Full Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 376
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 143 Post(s)
Liked 126 Times in 76 Posts
Rouvy has challenges where a lot of users ride.
you can have several hundred users in one coarse at certain times if the day. Group rides are another big thing on Rouvy rides all during the day. As someone who has used all the cycling appís. I will go with Rouvy more often than Zwift as I have gotten tired of riding the same routes over and over and over again.
Racing on Zwift is just crazy so many people riding at speeds they could never maintain out doors.
Ed Wiser is offline  
Old 11-30-22, 10:28 PM
  #12  
spelger
Senior Member
 
spelger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: reno, nv
Posts: 1,816

Bikes: yes, i have one

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 886 Post(s)
Liked 936 Times in 539 Posts
Originally Posted by Ed Wiser View Post
Rouvy has challenges where a lot of users ride.
you can have several hundred users in one coarse at certain times if the day. Group rides are another big thing on Rouvy rides all during the day. As someone who has used all the cycling appís. I will go with Rouvy more often than Zwift as I have gotten tired of riding the same routes over and over and over again.
Racing on Zwift is just crazy so many people riding at speeds they could never maintain out doors.
this is the main reason why i left zwift.
spelger is offline  
Old 12-01-22, 12:43 AM
  #13  
downtube42
Senior Member
 
downtube42's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 3,421

Bikes: Soma Fog Cutter, Volae Team, Focus Mares AL, Nimbus MUni, Trek Roscoe 6, Detroit Bikes Sparrow FG

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 705 Post(s)
Liked 1,604 Times in 823 Posts
I'm on 'Wahoo SYSTM (formerly sufferfest), which is another structured training program rather than social platform. They emphasize having a training plan with goals, and workouts (which barely pretend to be rides) include video of riding in the peleton or training groups, but you're solo.

But then to me, one of the benefits of cycling IRL is getting away from people.
downtube42 is offline  
Old 12-01-22, 01:10 AM
  #14  
caloso
Senior Member
 
caloso's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Sacramento, California, USA
Posts: 40,849

Bikes: Specialized Tarmac, Canyon Exceed, Specialized Transition, Ellsworth Roots, Ridley Excalibur

Mentioned: 68 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2945 Post(s)
Liked 3,067 Times in 1,403 Posts
Originally Posted by msu2001la View Post
Alternatives that I'm familiar with:

TrainerRoad: Pure training app, not a simulator. If you love doing structured workouts and focused training, and find all the "video game" stuff on Zwift to be annoying/distracting, this is probably a good one to check out.
.
Iím primarily on TrainerRoad during the winter, but I keep Zwift because I like being able to ride with my friends virtually. And I can run it concurrently with TR when I need a mental distraction during a hard set of intervals.


caloso is offline  
Likes For caloso:
Old 12-01-22, 05:12 PM
  #15  
La Tortue
Full Member
 
La Tortue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 231
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 37 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 32 Times in 25 Posts
Zwift is king for a reason. They were one of the early starters trying to make indoor trainers more interesting. The others are copycat companies jumping on once the concept was proven. Today when a potential customer conducts research before selecting an app they almost all go with Zwift. This is because Zwift has the most to offer every type of cyclist. Over 300 miles of roads and growing, thousands of workouts along with the ability to custom design your own. Individual workouts, group workouts, group rides, Pacer bot rides, and free rides. The race leagues have every type category for every type of racer or even non-racer. The upper race leagues have curtailed the questionable type tactics seen in the early virtual race years. They must be good as 20,000 plus racers show up Tuesdays, week after week , to race in the ZRL. Show me an outdoor race that can claim this.
The Zwift app community numbers in the hundreds of thousands. Zwift promotes Cycling in a number of ways. This year women's Tour De France could not have occurred without the major sponsorship from Zwift. Every year Zwift provides two Pro contracts (1 male/ 1 female) for aspiring road racers along with a triathlon team for Kona. If you think you are good enough you can try out for the upcoming Zwift Academy.
Zwift has created a cycling subcategory out of a trainer workout. The other competitors are simply riding on their coattails picking up the recalcitrant riders.
La Tortue is offline  
Old 12-01-22, 10:16 PM
  #16  
spelger
Senior Member
 
spelger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: reno, nv
Posts: 1,816

Bikes: yes, i have one

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 886 Post(s)
Liked 936 Times in 539 Posts
Just curious, how much are they paying you?
spelger is offline  
Likes For spelger:
Old 12-02-22, 05:05 AM
  #17  
Ed Wiser
Full Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 376
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 143 Post(s)
Liked 126 Times in 76 Posts
Nice copy and paste. All the cycling apps have their good points and bad. Everyone likes different things. A there are people who donít like Zwift believe it or not. It is not the be all and end all.
Ed Wiser is offline  
Likes For Ed Wiser:
Old 12-02-22, 08:43 AM
  #18  
La Tortue
Full Member
 
La Tortue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 231
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 37 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 32 Times in 25 Posts
And this just in from last night's weekly Thursday Team Time Trial Race. The WTRL TTT race raised over $27,000 to provide life-changing Buffalo Bikes to families and communities around the world!
La Tortue is offline  
Old 12-02-22, 09:19 AM
  #19  
Ed Wiser
Full Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 376
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 143 Post(s)
Liked 126 Times in 76 Posts
That all well and good all the cycling appís do the same things. I subscribe to several. As with my wifeís illness I donít get to ride out doors much anymore. Zwift is not for everyone. If you like to race. I am sure Zwift is fun. But not everyone cares about racing.
Ed Wiser is offline  
Old 12-02-22, 09:54 AM
  #20  
msu2001la
Senior Member
 
msu2001la's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Midwest
Posts: 2,436
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1208 Post(s)
Liked 1,200 Times in 708 Posts
As long as we're talking about what's good with Zwift, I'll add a few things that I've always found bad about it.

I really hate the way Zwift displays elevation profiles. If I'm riding a pre-selected route, I don't understand why Zwift won't give the option to see an elevation profile for the entire route, with distance markers on it and gradient colors. The current elevation profile that is displayed (on a tiny sliver at the bottom of the equally useless "mini map") seems completely arbitrary. There are some climbs (like the Bonus Climb in Watopia) that are super steep, but barely register as a climb on the elevation profile. A total route elevation profile with KOM's and sprint points doesn't seem that difficult to figure out.

Also why are there no customization options for other metrics that are displayed? Average speed and power seem like pretty basic numbers that people have interest in, yet Zwift doesn't provide those until the ride is complete.

Why do they continue to include a confusing "trainer difficulty" setting, which incorrectly implies that a lower setting makes the game "easier" when in reality it just makes the grade changes less realistic. I feel like they should change the name of the setting and provide more of a description on what it does.

Why do I still, in the year 2022, have to first start a ride then pause and page through a menu to see my overall progress on a challenge? I can see my total miles/elevation in my basic profile from the website, but I have to be in the game (and on an active ride) to see my progress in a challenge. This makes zero sense.

Similarly - why doesn't Zwift provide other profile stats/metrics like % of routes/roads ridden, a heat-map feature that shows all the routes you've ridden, and which ones you haven't? All-time PR's. Averages for power/intensity/mileage based on days or weeks. Why do I have to piggyback Strava on top of Zwift to track all of this when Zwift already has all the data?

OK - rant done.
msu2001la is offline  
Likes For msu2001la:
Old 12-02-22, 10:52 AM
  #21  
ilovebiking
Newbie
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: West TWC metro
Posts: 21

Bikes: Currently 2013 Kestrel 4000

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
I am the OP on this thread. I sincerely appreciate all the comments and suggestions. I will give some of these a try, including maybe even a fat bike for outdoors. Although as I look out my window here in Minnesota at the 8 inches of new snow and 10 degree temps, I may hesitate a bit. Again, thanks to all.
ilovebiking is offline  
Likes For ilovebiking:
Old 12-02-22, 12:47 PM
  #22  
La Tortue
Full Member
 
La Tortue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 231
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 37 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 32 Times in 25 Posts
As long as we're talking about what's good with Zwift, I'll add a few things that I've always found bad about it. I'll give your questions a try


I really hate the way Zwift displays elevation profiles. If I'm riding a pre-selected route, I don't understand why Zwift won't give the option to see an elevation profile for the entire route, with distance markers on it and gradient colors. The current elevation profile that is displayed (on a tiny sliver at the bottom of the equally useless "mini map") seems completely arbitrary. There are some climbs (like the Bonus Climb in Watopia) that are super steep, but barely register as a climb on the elevation profile. A total route elevation profile with KOM's and sprint points doesn't seem that difficult to figure out. You can get this info concurrently running Zwift Power live where it provides the entire elevation profile .


Also why are there no customization options for other metrics that are displayed? Average speed and power seem like pretty basic numbers that people have interest in, yet Zwift doesn't provide those until the ride is complete. Same thing Zwift power live in the background gives you avg speed, watts, distance traveled, distance to go, normalized power, current HR, etc. Not only your stats but for everyone else's in the event.


Why do they continue to include a confusing "trainer difficulty" setting, which incorrectly implies that a lower setting makes the game "easier" when in reality it just makes the grade changes less realistic. I feel like they should change the name of the setting and provide more of a description on what it does. You don't seem confused anymore, you described it. The real problem isn't the name. It is the concept that the same watts are required whichever setting you have it on that causes confusion. If you have a better name to explain this I would love to hear it.


Why do I still, in the year 2022, have to first start a ride then pause and page through a menu to see my overall progress on a challenge? I can see my total miles/elevation in my basic profile from the website, but I have to be in the game (and on an active ride) to see my progress in a challenge. This makes zero sense.


Similarly - why doesn't Zwift provide other profile stats/metrics like % of routes/roads ridden, a heat-map feature that shows all the routes you've ridden, and which ones you haven't? All-time PR's. Averages for power/intensity/mileage based on days or weeks. Why do I have to piggyback Strava on top of Zwift to track all of this when Zwift already has all the data? Most of this is provided in the Zwift badges page or your Zwift Power profile page.


OK - rant done.
La Tortue is offline  
Old 12-02-22, 12:59 PM
  #23  
himespau 
Senior Member
 
himespau's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 13,232
Mentioned: 32 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3732 Post(s)
Liked 2,541 Times in 1,514 Posts
Trainer difficulty should be called "Trainer Realism". I've been posting that in forums forever and remain unchanged on that.

The rest of the information (minus the elevation, which is dumb that it's not included the way msu2001la states - Zwift has forever claimed that it's done this way for people who free are free riding because that's the only way it can be done for them since I've first seen people asking about it 3-4 years ago) is available in the highly customizable Sauce for Zwift overlay. It is annoying that you have to pay $2 a month to get an outside app to do all of the things that Zwift should be able to do inside the app, but it is what it is.
himespau is offline  
Likes For himespau:
Old 12-02-22, 09:39 PM
  #24  
spelger
Senior Member
 
spelger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: reno, nv
Posts: 1,816

Bikes: yes, i have one

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 886 Post(s)
Liked 936 Times in 539 Posts
Originally Posted by La Tortue View Post
As long as we're talking about what's good with Zwift, I'll add a few things that I've always found bad about it. I'll give your questions a try

OK - rant done.
you work for zwift, don't you? the whole point of this thread is zwift alternatives because zwift falls short in areas. zwift is like the eclipse IDE to me, i want to like it but it still stinks in ways it shouldnt'. everything msu2001la wrote is spot on. needing yet another application to get data readily available to the main app being used it pitiful.

i still do like that i can take a left turn in zwift or a right turn just because. that is where the video apps like rouvy fall short. but even with some programming that can be corrected. just a matter of time.
spelger is offline  
Old 12-03-22, 09:15 AM
  #25  
La Tortue
Full Member
 
La Tortue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 231
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 37 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 32 Times in 25 Posts
Originally Posted by spelger View Post
you work for zwift, don't you? the whole point of this thread is zwift alternatives because zwift falls short in areas. zwift is like the eclipse IDE to me, i want to like it but it still stinks in ways it shouldnt'. everything msu2001la wrote is spot on. needing yet another application to get data readily available to the main app being used it pitiful.


i still do like that i can take a left turn in zwift or a right turn just because. that is where the video apps like rouvy fall short. but even with some programming that can be corrected. just a matter of time.

LOL, no I don't work for Zwift. But as a 59 level Zwifter I am certainly a big fan. I do have a very good idea of what the product offers and does not offer. I do recognize at $15 per month it's a great product that offers more than any of its competitors do. Unless another product offers some very specific item they must absolutely have and Zwift doesn't offer it Zwift is the obvious platform. This is backed up by numbers and at this time these numbers aren't changing. The numbers aren't even close. Zwift is King and the reason is quality and bang for the buck.
La Tortue is offline  
Likes For La Tortue:

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2023 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.