The 6 Best Free & Paid Indoor Cycling Apps to Keep You Engaged in 2022

Best Indoor Cycling Apps (Zwift, ROUVY, TrainerRoad, Wahoo SYSTM, RGT Cycling, FulGaz)

CyclistsHub is supported by its readers. If you buy products using our links, we may receive a commission (learn more).

These are the best free and paid indoor cycling apps. I tried & tested them all, so you don’t have to.

I help you choose the best one based on your preferences. All apps below will take your indoor training to the next level – they will keep you engaged and motivated.

Together with your self-discipline and effort, they will help you increase your fitness. Some of them even allow you to virtually visit beautiful places worldwide.

Are you ready to learn more?

Let’s dive in.


What Are the Best Indoor Cycling Apps?

The best indoor cycling apps are those apps that offer a free trial so you can try them. They should be available on major platforms like Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android, and help you meet your goals (e.g., improve performance, have fun, virtually visit places worldwide).

Below, you can find my selection of the best indoor cycling apps. I selected them based on the criteria you can find below. I also tried them all to better understand how they work and who are they for.

Feel free to skip to the comparison table to compare all apps that I tested.

Zwift

Game-inspired cycling app that makes indoor cycling fun…

Zwift Indoor Cycling App
  • Price: 14.99 USD / month
  • Free trial: 7 days
  • Connectivity: ANT+ FE-C, Bluetooth, BLE FTMS
  • OS Compatibility: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Apple TV
  • Ideal for: People who like playing games or look for social interactivity, competitiveness, races, and fun

Zwift is the most popular indoor cycling app out there. Eric Min, the co-founder of Zwift, said in an interview for Forbes, that they had about 3 million subscribers and at one point, around 45,000 simultaneous users (2021).

The Zwift app consists of a completely virtual world and avatars that represent individual riders. It’s a game for cyclists, triathletes, and runners.

Screenshot from my ride in the London world in Zwift
Can you guess what city I ride in in the screenshot?

In addition to the virtual world, one of Zwift’s main features is the social element. It allows you to ride with your friends or people from all over the world. Thanks to the Zwift Companion app, you can better interact with others using the in-built chat. You can also set goals, see your stats, etc.

What I also like about Zwift is the effort with which they improve it. The updates upgrade, for example, calculations, drafting, avatar behavior, etc. However, the in-app physics is not as sophisticated as in Wahoo RGT.

Zwift also contains a lot of gamification elements. As you ride, you gain experience (and drops) that translate into levels. Levels unlock new equipment that you can buy for drops, so you can build your “dream setup.”

Zwift's Garage - choose a frame
Zwift Garage

There are also various challenges and achievements. If you enjoy games, you will enjoy Zwift!

Thanks to its popularity, many websites, videos, and other content have been created with tips and tricks to help you get the most out of Zwift. I can recommend Zwift Hub, Zwift Insider, or What’s on Zwift.

Paradoxically, the main disadvantage of Zwift is the virtual world. After discussions with fellow cyclists, I found that it reminds them of children’s games. Additionally, the number of worlds/routes is also limited.

Zwift Route Library - Road to Sky route
Zwift Route Library

Therefore, apps with real-world routes like ROUVY, FulGaz are great Zwift alternatives.

Zwift can be considered a pioneer among indoor cycling apps. It is not the first application of its kind, but definitely the most popular.

If you don’t have a trainer yet, make sure also to check out my selection of the best bike trainers for Zwift to get the best zwifting experience possible.

…or read my in-depth Zwift review.


You might also be interested in these cycling apps. The article includes the selection of the best first aid, weather, training, and other types of apps suitable for cyclists.


ROUVY

Thousands of beautiful routes from around the globe…

Rouvy Indoor Cycling App
  • Price: 15 USD / month or 144 USD / year
  • Free trial: 14 days
  • Connectivity: ANT+ FE-C, Bluetooth
  • OS Compatibility: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Apple TV
  • Ideal for: People who want to visit beautiful routes worldwide, do structured workouts, or race

ROUVY was founded by two brothers from the Czech Republic. In 2011, they partnered with Saris Group (CycleOps brand back then), and ROUVY quickly grew in the foreign market.

These days, ROUVY belongs to one of the most popular indoor cycling training apps out there. According to the company, the g’rouvy’ing community counts hundreds of thousands of registered users.

It is also no surprise that the Czech National Championships in e-cycling (2021) used ROUVY as the main platform.

ROUVY differentiates itself from the other apps by offering real-world recordings of famous climbs and routes. These recordings are augmented with a virtual avatar and other ride data from your bike trainer or 3rd party sensors. This makes your training more realistic, and you can explore beautiful places around the world from the comfort of your home. Currently, there are more than 10,000 video routes in their database.

Screenshot from my ride in Arabba - Passo Pordoi in ROUVY
Me climbing Passo Pordoi

The possibility to ride official routes of races like Vuelta a España, IRONMAN, Tour de Suisse, and many others, and compare your performance with the elite WorldTour and triathlon pros is also unique.

You can even create your own rides and invite friends to join you on a group ride. So if you have a favorite route in your area, take a video of it, upload it to the app, and start riding.

Runners can use ROUVY too. It works on the same principle as cycling. ROUVY also introduced a new Career at the beginning of 2022 to keep you motivated and engaged. Additionally, they have a database of 10,000+ routes to ensure your workouts’ diversity.

ROUVY In-App Routes Library
ROUVY in-app routes library

ROUVY lags a little bit with reliability. Users report connection issues, and the app freezes from time to time. These issues should be addressed with the following app updates.

The ROUVY’s team plans to release localization of more European languages soon and host more virtual events of famous races.

I recommend ROUVY for every rider who doesn’t like the virtuality of Zwift and wants to enjoy the beautiful sceneries of famous routes in Italy, Spain, Switzerland, and many more countries.

…or read my in-depth ROUVY review.


TrainerRoad

One of the best apps for improving your performance…

TrainerRoad Indoor Cycling App
  • Price: 19.95 USD / month or 189 USD / year
  • Free trial: n/a (30-day money-back guarantee)
  • Connectivity: ANT+ FE-C, Bluetooth, BLE FTMS
  • OS Compatibility: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Apple TV
  • Ideal for: Serious and dedicated athletes who want to push their limits

TrainerRoad is a different type of indoor cycling app. It is not focused as much on your visual experience but rather on your training.

My ride data in TrainerRoad
My ride data in TrainerRoad

Improving your performance is also the main goal of TrainerRoad. Therefore, this app is ideal for serious cyclists who want to take their results to the next level and maybe win some races.

TrainerRoad focuses on structured workouts and it can create personalized training plans based on your goals. Their library includes plenty of them. Of course, you can upload your own.

TrainerRoad Training Plans and Plan Builder in web app
TrainerRoad plan builder

TrainerRoad developers even implemented artificial intelligence to adjust your workouts based on your data, latest coaching principles, etc. They call it Adaptive Training, and it helps to make the most of your training.

Jonathan Lee, TrainerRoad communications director, told me that they plan to constantly improve this feature to find the best way to make you faster. They will also move it to the open beta production phase soon.

TrainerRoad can also count your outdoor workouts into your whole training plan and adjust it properly based on your fatigue, fitness, etc. This is great if you combine your indoor workouts with outdoor training.

I also cannot forget to mention the analytics tools you get in the TrainerRoad web app. It will help you scrutinize your training and learn from it.

My Ramp Test Results in TrainerRoad web app
My ramp test results in TrainerRoad

I also want to point out the reliability and great connectivity of TrainerRoad apps. They are the best-rated indoor cycling apps on Google Play and Apple Store.

Keep in mind that the best way to use TrainerRoad is with a smart trainer with a precise and reliable ERG mode. However, this setup is not required, and you can use a budget wheel-on trainer with a power meter, for example.

I am sure you will like using TrainerRoad, but if not, you can take advantage of their 30-day money-back guarantee.

…or read my in-depth TrainerRoad review.


Check out the best bike smart trainers for indoor cycling to buy to enjoy your winter training to the maximum.


Wahoo SYSTM (formerly known as The Sufferfest)

Comprehensive training platform for a wide range of (endurance) athletes…

Wahoo SYSTM Cycling App
  • Price: 14.99 USD / month or 129 USD / year – you can subscribe to Wahoo X to get access to Wahoo SYSTM and Wahoo RGT at the same price
  • Free trial: 14 days
  • Connectivity: ANT+ FE-C, BLE FTMS
  • OS Compatibility: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Apple TV
  • Ideal for: People who appreciate a versatile approach to their training

Wahoo SYSTM (formerly known as The Sufferfest, you can learn more here) is not only for cyclists but also for yogis, swimmers, and people who want to strengthen their mental health and body. This makes this platform unique and suitable for a wide range of athletes.

The advantage is that you can download the training library and use the application offline. Unlike Zwift, ROUVY, or other applications, SYSTM doesn’t care so much about the social element. The individual workouts are accompanied by recordings (these vary depending on the interval you ride) and your ride data. You won’t find a virtual avatar in SYSTM.

Wahoo SYSTM Funny Quote: Only Couchlandrians hold back. And that is certainly not you.
Wahoo SYSTM is full of (sometimes funny) quotes

Thanks to many disciplines, you don’t even need a bike trainer for this app. What I mean is that you can strengthen your core muscles, for example, by following their structured videos.

Wahoo SYSTM Library (Cycling, running, swimming, etc.)
Wahoo SYSTM Library

The SYSTM workout library is extensive and well thought out. The workouts were designed by Neal Henderson, an acclaimed coach whose athletes have won more than 47 titles in various disciplines, Grand Tour stage wins, and Olympic medals.

Unlike other applications, SYSTM uses 4-dimensional power for structuring workouts instead of using just your FTP. It is a little bit more precise (especially for sprint intervals), allowing you to target the exact watts you need.

Wahoo SYSTM 4DP Test Results with detailed description of rider profile
My 4DP test results

Based on the info I got from SYSTM’s head of marketing, Dylan Robbins, they plan to release a game-changing feature at the start of the 2021-2022 season. I am curious what it may be. We have to stay tuned.

The main disadvantages of this app are the lack of a social element. SYSTM is great for riders who take their training seriously and who want to learn more about their strengths and weaknesses.

…or read my in-depth Wahoo SYTM review.


Wahoo RGT (formerly RGT Cycling) – The Best Free Indoor Cycling App

Virtual cycling with real-life-like physics…

Wahoo RGT Review: Screenshot from Zwift app put into MacBook Pro mockup
  • Price: Free or 14.99 USD / month, 129 USD / year – you can subscribe to Wahoo X to get access to Wahoo RGT and Wahoo SYSTM at the same price
  • Free trial: 14 days
  • Connectivity: ANT+ FE-C, BLE FTMS
  • OS Compatibility: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Apple TV
  • Ideal for: People who want to try virtual cycling on a budget

Wahoo RGT (formerly known as RGT Cycling) is the only indoor cycling app on this list with a free plan and premium subscription.

The free plan won’t allow you to access structured workouts, the workouts library, or create events, but it is sufficient if you want to try the app before paying for the Wahoo X subscription. Wahoo X provides you with access to Wahoo RGT and Wahoo SYSTM.

Wahoo RGT has more realistic graphics and physics than Zwift. The world is virtual, but it is inspired by real roads from around the globe.

Me riding in Wahoo RGT (Wahoo branding)
RGT Cycling to Wahoo RGT – Wahoo branding

One of the main advantages is the ability to control the application directly via your phone. It’s very convenient and user-friendly (for example, you don’t have to reach for the mouse or remote).

Unlike Zwift, you can easily choose on which part of the road you want to start your training. The movement of the avatar is also more realistic, especially during descents. Your avatar slows down automatically before corners and hairpins.

The number of available roads is pretty limited, though, so they may get repetitive over time. However, you can submit a route you ride in your area and the RGT team will create a ‘magic road’ with the same profile but a pre-prepared world.

Moto view of a Magic Road in RGT Cycling
Me at the start of a Magic Road in Wahoo RGT (moto view)

The last downside I found is the lack of the social aspect and gamification elements leading to lower motivation for long-term use. However, this should change after the acquisition by Wahoo.

Anyway, the Wahoo RGT app is perfect for people who don’t like the Zwift graphics, want to enjoy riding on virtual roads inspired by the real world, and who don’t need so much external motivation.

…or read my in-depth Wahoo RGT (RGT Cycling) review.


Don’t you have a bike trainer yet? Browse the best bike trainers on the market.


FulGaz

Worldwide routes without distractions and in the best possible quality…

FulGaz Indoor Cycling App
  • Price: 12.99 USD / month or 108.99 USD / year
  • Free trial: 14 days
  • Connectivity: ANT+ FE-C, BLE FTMS
  • OS Compatibility: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Apple TV
  • Ideal for: People who want to explore distraction-free footage from thousands of places worldwide

FulGaz is one of the applications that pay attention to details and ease of use. The initial setup and pairing with smart trainers are straightforward, and the app itself is intuitive.

One of the main added values of FulGaz is the quality of the footage of up to 4K. Therefore, you can easily transfer yourself to the summer Alps, for example, and forget about the winter outside.

FulGaz HUD Display ride view
FulGaz HUD Display

The routes library is extensive, thanks to the cycling community from all over the world contributing the footage.

FulGaz Properly Loaded Route Library
FulGaz Route Library

In FulGaz, you can ride solo or organize group rides. Just keep in mind that there is no drafting implemented, so it is up to you and your effort.

The lack of social interaction (as we know it from Zwift) is probably the biggest disadvantage for some riders. Personally, I don’t mind it as much.

I also asked the FulGaz team what their plans for the future are and found out that they want to host more events and bring the community of cyclists closer together. Hopefully, they will succeed.

Overall, FulGaz is a good alternative to ROUVY and other apps that use real-world footage for people who don’t mind the lack of social interaction.

…or read my in-depth FulGaz review.


AppPriceFree TrialWorldMultiplayerConnectivityPlatform Availability
Zwift14.99 USD / month7 daysVirtualYesANT+ FE-C, Bluetooth, BLE FTMSAndroid, iOS, Windows, macOS, Apple TV
ROUVY15 USD / month
144 USD / year
14 daysRealYesANT+ FE-C, BluetoothAndroid, iOS, Windows, macOS, Apple TV
TrainerRoad19.95 USD / month
189 USD / year
n/a**n/aNoANT+ FE-C, Bluetooth, BLE FTMSAndroid, iOS, Windows, macOS
Wahoo SYSTM (formerly The Sufferfest)*14.99 USD / month
129 USD / year
14 daysRealNoANT+ FE-C, BLE FTMSAndroid, iOS, Windows, macOS
Wahoo RGT (formerly RGT Cycling)*Free or
14.99 USD / month
129 USD / year
14 daysVirtualYesANT+ FE-C, BLE FTMSAndroid, iOS, Windows, macOS, Apple TV
Android, iOS (remote)
FulGaz12.99 USD / month
108.99 USD / year
14 daysRealYesANT+ FE-C, BLE FTMSAndroid, iOS, Windows, macOS, Apple TV
List of the best indoor cycling apps with the info about their price, free trial period, type of the world, multiplayer option, connectivity, and platform availability.
Updated on the 11th of July, 2022.
*You can only subscribe to the Wahoo X subscription and get access to Wahoo SYSTM and Wahoo RGT.
**30-day money-back guarantee

Honorable Mentions

Here are a few apps that did not make it into the list but are also worth trying:

  • CycleGo is one of the best free indoor cycling apps out there (in-app purchases available). It’s available for Android and iOS and it’s ideal for beginners and casual riders that want to spin their legs from time to time. The main downside of this app is that it can’t communicate with devices like trainers and sensors. You have to adjust the resistance on your trainer or shift gears and follow the instructions from the app. There is also no support for Windows or macOS devices.
  • Tacx Training works on a similar principle as FulGaz and SYSTM. You choose a real-world route that is prerecorded, and the app adds your ride data. Tacx Training is available for Android, iOS, Windows. Unfortunately, Tacx Training is compatible with Tacx trainers only when connected via Bluetooth Smart.
  • BKool was promoted by Chris Froome, four-time Tour de France winner. When it works, it is a good app but users report a lot of connectivity and accuracy issues. Hopefully, BKool developers will fix them soon. BKool is available for Android, iOS, Windows, and macOS.

How Did I Choose the Best Indoor Cycling Apps?

When selecting the indoor cycling apps for this list, I evaluated criteria like price, connectivity, compatibility, etc.

Below, you can learn more about these features and what to expect from indoor cycling apps available in app stores.

Price

Most indoor training applications are paid. You usually subscribe for either a month or a year. Subscriptions per year are, on average, about 30% cheaper. Subscription prices range from about $10 to $20 per month or $100 to $200 per year.

All applications on this list offer free trials for a week, two weeks, or an entire month. It is a great way to try an app without obligation, so I recommend taking advantage of it.

Keep in mind that the trial period can be limited by the number of miles or kilometers. This can vary from app to app. So, make sure to read the FAQ of the dedicated app. Here is an example from the Zwift FAQ page:

Zwift Free Trial Limitation
Zwift limits the number of miles (kilometers) for iOS, Apple TV, and Android.

Device Connectivity

Connectivity is important because if an app doesn’t offer connectivity with your smart trainer or sensors, you can’t use it. Luckily, all selected apps support ANT+, ANT+ FE-C, Bluetooth, or Bluetooth Low Energy Fitness Machine Service (BLE FTMS) protocols.

If you want to use the app on your computer running Windows or macOS, you will need an ANT+ dongle that ensures compatibility (learn more about ANT+ and how bike trainers communicate).

Operating System Compatibility

Depending on the device you want to use the app with, you should not forget about the OS compatibility. Most indoor cycling apps are available for Android, iOS, Windows, and macOS. But, if you want to use it on Apple TV, for example, double-check if the app is available.

We, as consumers, are pretty lucky because developers try hard to provide us with support for additional operating systems. Apps that don’t support some OS may include the support in the future.

App Design

There are three basic types of indoor cycling apps in terms of design.

1. Apps with recordings of the real world with or without virtual avatars – they are attractive because you can experience famous climbs almost on your own skin. These apps (e.g., ROUVY, FulGaz, SYSTM) will also allow you to relive memories from your vacation if you ride the route in-app.

Screenshot from my ride in Arabba - Passo Pordoi in ROUVY
ROUVY app design
Watermolenstraat segment in RGT Cycling app
RGT Cycling app design

2. Apps with complete virtual worlds and avatars – the best example of these apps is Zwift. It includes virtual worlds and artificial routes inspired by the real world.

Screenshot from my ride in the London world in Zwift
Zwift app design

3. Apps with a training plan and ride data only. The TrainerRoad is a good example of this type of app. It only displays your workout structure and the ride data like power, HR, cadence, etc.

My ride data in TrainerRoad
TrainerRoad ride data

User Reviews

Reviews from other users often help us decide whether or not even to try an app. The truth is there are dozens of indoor cycling apps out there, but just a few of them are worth using.

I did not include apps with an average rating of below 2.5 stars on Google Play and App Store.

Sometimes, an app gets bad reviews just because of one unsuccessful update that is fixed later. However, if an app gets bad reviews consistently, it is not a good app.


Conclusion

Based on testing and evaluating user reviews, I selected the following apps as the best:

I hope you enjoyed this list of the best indoor cycling apps. Which one is your favorite? What app did you try but didn’t like? Or is there an app that I should include? Let me know in the comments below.


Best Indoor Cycling Apps FAQ

About The Author

4 thoughts on “The 6 Best Free & Paid Indoor Cycling Apps to Keep You Engaged in 2022”

  1. the least expensive ‘good’ simulation of cycling worlds would be grand theft auto – after you buy the game, you can ride thereafter for free.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Scroll to Top