If mountain biking wasn’t the first thing to pop into your head at the mention of an indoor trainer then you are probably not alone. Don’t worry though, all will be revealed when we dive into the 6 reasons mountain bikers should Zwift.
Until recently, indoor training has almost exclusively been the domain of road cyclists looking to keep their fitness up and maintain a structured plan during the cold winter months.
However, indoor training is now just as accessible for mountain bikers as it is for roadies. Thanks to MTB-compatible smart trainers and third party cycling apps, mountain bikers can take advantage of the warm indoors to get their miles in so you don’t get left behind when you hit the trails again.
Still not convinced? Read on.
1/ You can ride your MTB
With compatible trainers, indoor training doesn’t require you to don the lycra and get out the road bike, you can easily put your trusty steed on the trainer and ride away. Simply lock out your front fork and set your saddle height as if you are riding uphill.
2/ It’s convenient
When you get home from a day at work the last thing you might want to do is get the mountain bike out and head to the trails in the cold and wet. Luckily with an indoor training set up, you don’t have to go too far. If your bike is already set up at home then it’s much more likely that you will train. Just put your shorts and shoes on, grab your water bottle and pick the route you are going to ride.
3/ Improves your pedal power
Buying the latest carbon-framed biking monster to blast around the trails will help in making you a bit faster but nothing beats the power of just getting the legs spinning. Zwift provides you with the perfect platform to get your fitness levels up so you can rip through the trails. The more time you put into riding your bike the better.
Riding three to five times a week even for just 30 minutes at a time will help you see a massive improvement in your bike fitness. Even at that, you can control those efforts you are doing with all your key metrics being displayed on the screen in front of you so you can control your ride much easier.
4/ Get competitive
There’s no better feeling than beating your mates up a hill when out on the trails. On Zwift you can also get that same feeling. Zwift racing is the ideal setup for you to get your weekly bragging rights in.
Each week on Zwift there are hundreds of races from short fast sprints around Buckingham Palace to epic mountain climbs up Watopia. Racing just once a week can lead to some serious improvements in your fitness and mental wellbeing. However many times you decide to race on Zwift you can be sure that it will translate to more power for the next time you are planning to beat your mates in the ‘real world’.
5/ It’s Social
One major benefit of hitting the trails is the social aspect, cruising around the trails you can chat with your friends, meet other keen mountain bikers and also chat with some friendly locals. Zwift is no different. It may seem hard to believe as you are riding alone in the garage on your turbo trainer but Zwift has a massive community and it’s possible to join in on group rides with hundreds of other bikers any day of the week.
Using Zwift’s companion app you can talk about everything from bikes, to what you are having for dinner after the ride. Even give your friends a follow and you’ll be able to congratulate them on their latest ride and give them a ‘Ride On’ for their amazing efforts.
6/ It’s Fun
Okay, we agree nothing quite beats the thrill of the mud and wind as you are blasting down a trail and Zwift can’t provide this feeling. However, there might not be many mountain bike-focused features on the platform currently but this is just a sign of things to come as Zwift continues to add new fun features such as new trails, in-game steering, and rock gardens you will soon be able to enjoy the majority of thrills that mountain biking has to offer from the comfort of your own home.