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Top 13 Free and Paid Indoor Cycling Apps

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Training and racing outdoors are one of the best feelings. And, the best way to train for a race.

Unfortunately, not everyone can bike year-round outdoors.

For this reason, indoor riding has become popular among cyclists and triathletes as they head into the “off-season” and start gearing up for next year.

Thanks to smart trainers, athletes can have a more interactive indoor riding experience. Most smart trainers allow athletes to ride together online, follow a structured training plan from a training app or coach, or even ride well-known routes.

best indoor cycling apps

Whether you are an avid racer or just enjoy riding, there is an app available that will help you reach your biking goals.

Best Paid and Free Indoor Cycling Apps 2022

Many of these apps do require a subscription. But, the good news is that the apps offer a free trial. An app might have a free version, but it won’t have all the capabilities as paid members. In this article, we’ll give a rundown of the top-rated cycling apps and why they might be a good fit for your training and racing goals.

ZWIFT

Subscription: $14.99/month for the cycling program and running is free
Free trial: 7-day trial
Device Compatibility: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, and Apple TV
Smart trainer compatibility: Bluetooth, ANT+ FE-C, BLE FTMS

zwift indoor cycling app review

Zwift combines online gaming with the cycling world. The app offers interactive worlds to explore either on your own or with your friends or training group.

You can follow your own training plan, choose a training plan, ride with a group or race, and many more options available.

On Zwift, you create an avatar and you can choose to explore different worlds within the Zwift app.

Currently, there are ten worlds to explore and hundreds of routes. You can choose to bike around New Zealand one week and then be on the streets of New York City the next. It’s up to you!

There are planned routes within each world or you can “explore” on your own.

Each world not only has routes but you can “see” other people riding. 

Since you can “ride” with people on Zwift, you have a whole community of riders no matter what time you hop on your trainer.

And, that’s the selling point for Zwift is the interactions with other bikers and it feels like a multiplayer video game. It makes winter training more fun if you can feel like you’re with your friends.

If you want to follow a structured workout or training plan, Zwift offers both through its app.

You can also sync a third party app in Zwift if you have a coach.

Triathletes and cyclists like it because it is a very interactive app that makes winter training fun and it works well with nearly every type of smart trainers and some “dumb trainers.” Basically, if you have the right technology you should be able to use Zwift. I recommend this cycling app if you want a multiplayer video game, interactive experience for your winter training program.

TRAINERROAD

Subscription: $19.95/month or $189/year
Free trial: Money back in the first 30 days
Device Compatibility: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android
Smart trainer compatibility: Bluetooth, ANT+ FE-C

trainerroad cycling app review

TrainerRoad offers rigorously researched planning, training, and analysis tools to its users.

When you pay for the subscription, you also pay for a customized training plan. You control when you start training, your weekly schedule, and which days you need rest.

Your subscription also covers plans that are tailored to specific disciplines.

For every training plan, the app divides it into three phases: base, build, and specialty. This ensures you have a good base before building up to your goals.

The app will give you clear objectives for each workout. And, you can see your stats for each workout and how you’re progressing.

Each workout can easily be “converted” to an outdoor workout if it works out better for your schedule.

If you’re new to the app, you’ll be “tested” by the app to assess your strengths and weaknesses.

Cyclists like the app because it’s very simple and it just works. The plans are well-researched and triathletes trust that the plan will work for them. Athletes like that work well with third party apps.

I recommend this app to those who want an app that is simple yet effective. And, the cycling app is easy to sync up with third party apps. It gives great instructions and all the training plans and workouts are well-researched so you know you’re getting good quality for the subscription.

ROUVY

Subscription: $12/month with two family members for an annual plan
Free trial: 14-day trial
Device Compatibility: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android
Smart trainer compatibility: ANT+ FE-C

rouvy cycling app review

To use the Rouvy cycling app, you’ll need some type of device or monitor.  Then you’ll need your bike, of course. The last thing you need is a direct-drive or wheel-on trainer.

If you don’t have a smart trainer, it’s still possible to use the cycling app. You’ll need a power or speed and cadence sensor if you wish. This helps the app calculate your final speed from the virtual speed.

What’s so great about the app?

Similar to Zwift this one offers virtual routes, official virtual races, and structured workouts.

The virtual races feature famous places and race courses with route videos to make it seem like you’re actually biking there. You can even make your own route or a race course you will be doing.

Many of the structured workouts come with interactive video guides so it seems like you’re getting one-on-one coaching.

After each workout, your data is automatically synced and uploaded to your training apps such as Strava, TrainingPeaks, and even your social media accounts.

On Rouvy, you can view your virtual training diary, personal stats, and heart rate zones.

What makes this app fun?

Rouvy has “Augmented Routes’ ‘ which cast outdoor videos on your screen with 3D elements on them such as cyclists passing you.

The virtual community shows leaderboards and public ratings so you can race your friends on a course. Or, challenge yourself against other riders around the world. 

Cyclists who have a subscription to this cycling app like it because the tech part of it is simple. All that’s needed is a speed or cadence sensor and a monitor to display the virtual world of Rouvy. The cycling app syncs up with any training app easily and automatically uploads workout data.

I recommend this cycling app to those who want one that is simple to use tech-wise. And, good news you don’t need a smart trainer or bike to use this app.

FULGAZ

Subscription: 12.99/month or $108.99 per year with an extra family membership
Free trial: 14-day trial
Device Compatibility: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android
Smart trainer compatibility: Bluetooth and ANT+ FE-C

fulgaz cycling app review

FulGaz features amazingly high-quality videos, precise mapping, and easy-to-use technology.

The videos on the app offer routes all over the globe and some even have 4k resolution.

The GPS data is used to make the videos life-like.

Set up is easy since the cycling app automatically syncs up to every smart trainer, power meters, and other sensors through Bluetooth.

To get started you need an iPhone/iPad, Apple TV, Android device, or windows device to download the app onto it.

Second, connect your devices and sensors with Bluetooth or ANT+ depending on what your set-up is.

Third, the app will adjust to your unique self. All you need to do is give the app, the correct information. It will ask for information such as the weight of your bike, your weight, and height, etc.

Finally, choose where ever you want to ride, and if you want to race or follow a training plan or structured workout.

The app offers 12-week training plans based on goals. If you want to improve your climbing or endurance, there is one available for you.

If you already have a coach, no problem. Just sync up your training app with FulGaz and you’re all set.

Unlike other apps, this one doesn’t compile mountains of data for you or your coach to analyze. This is a good or bad thing depending on what you like. If you want to keep it simple, then this might be a good choice for you.

Cyclists who have used this cycling app like it because the videos are filmed so well and some are even offered in 4k resolution. It really gives riders a sense of what it’s like to bike in different parts of the world. I recommend this app if you’re not keen on data and are more interested in “visiting” other parts of the world by bike. Even if it’s virtually the video’s resolution is quite impressive.

WAHOO SYSTM (Formerly THE SUFFERFEST)

Subscription: 14.99/month or $129/year
Free trial: 14-day trial
Device Compatibility: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android
Smart trainer compatibility: Bluetooth, ANT+ FE-C

wahoo systm cycling app review

Wahoo SYSTM (formerly THE SUFFERFEST) is an “all-in-one” app that includes everything that involves training. It has the actual workouts you can follow and the holistic side of training such as mental and strength training.

The cycling workouts have a patented Four-Dimensional Power complete fitness test which is more extensive than an FTP test. After taking this test, the app can customize the plans so that it matches your ability and helps reach your goals.

The Yoga workouts were developed with a certified yoga instructor. And, it hopes to help you build a stronger core and flexibility. It aims to improve your riding posture and prevent injury.

The mental training was created with the cycling app’s team of coaches and sports psychologists so you can be mentally tough for your races.

With a subscription, you have access to structured workouts with videos from different locations or events around the world. Each workout has a video, music, and other animations to make the experience immersive.

Most workouts are high-intensity, but you can balance it with yoga, strength training, running, and even mental exercises.

Even though Wahoo Fitness created the cycling app, you don’t need a Wahoo bike trainer. Any smart trainer will do as long as it meets the ANT+ and Bluetooth Smart industry standards.

Unfortunately, the app is not compatible with Android devices so you’ll need to have iOS, Windows, or Mac. Once it’s downloaded onto your device, you can connect your sensors and smart trainer through Bluetooth or ANT+ sensors.

After each workout, your data will be synced and sent to whichever third-party training app you use. You can also upload workouts to SYSTM.

Endurance athletes who subscribed to the app, like it because they receive everything from cycling workouts to mental toughness exercises. This app understands that an athlete does more than just go through the motions of the race and wants to prepare you to be a rounded athlete. Triathletes like the variety and high-quality videos and the audio are perfectly executed.

I recommend this app if you want high intensity workouts in “exotic” locations around the world. If you’re looking for an app that does more than just cycling workouts this is the app to consider.

XERT

Subscription: $9.99/month or $99.95/year
Free trial: 30-day trial
Device Compatibility: iOS, Android
Smart trainer compatibility: Bluetooth, ANT+ FE-C

xert cycling app review

The cycling app XERT gives you an adaptive training plan that gives you feedback during your workouts. This means that there aren’t any more formal FTP tests.

The workouts will adjust to your data in real-time so you know you’re getting the most from each workout. And, you don’t be over or underworked ever.

To get started, all you need to do is download the app onto your iOS or Android device and you can get started.

In the app, you’ll see your workout history and the recommended workout for the day. The app decides what workout might be best for you depending on your current stats.

Of course, you can pick a workout that isn’t your recommended one. The workouts that have “smart” next to it are dynamic and you’ll need to pair up your sensors.

When you start a workout, it will automatically adjust your power as you go.

After your workout, you can sync up your data to a third party app such as TrainingPeaks. However, the app has a calendar built in its program so that you don’t have to have a training diary in one app and your workouts in another.

The app has an “Activities Dashboard” that gives detailed reports from your previous workouts. And, at the top of the page, you can see your current fitness stats and how close you are to reaching your goals.

Cyclists who have subscribed to this app like it because it combines the perks of TrainingPeaks with an adaptive training plan. It works well since athletes always seem to get what they want from each workout. I recommend this app to those who want an adaptive plan that will keep up and slow down with life outside of the sport. After all, not all of us wanted to go pro in the sport. Many of us have to balance family and work.

RGT CYCLING

Subscription: Free or $9.99/month for a premium membership
Free trial: 14-day trial
Device Compatibility: Windows, MacOS, iOS, Apple TV
Smart trainer compatibility: Bluetooth, ANT+ FE-C

rgt cycling review

RGT Cycling gives riders a detailed simulation of riding with friends in a virtual cycling world.

The app has a library of high-quality, researched developed workouts with access to coaches through TrainingPeaks.

The cycling coaching team includes Tim Cusick, Pav Bryan, and Taylor Thomas to name a few. Workouts types include recovery, endurance, threshold, VO2 Max, and Anaerobic.

Just pick a workout you want based on these categories and press the start button. All your data is synced and can be sent to your third party app.

If you have TrainingPeaks, even better. You can use your TrainPeaks account to connect to a coach there and then ride your workouts through RGT Cycling.

Through the app, you can connect to other riders or friends or create and join group rides and races. This is great momentum for winter training. You’ll have a community of people to ride with no matter what time of day you train.

The app also allows you to connect to your training apps such as Strava and TrainingPeaks

Athletes who use this cycling app like it because it is simple to use and it works well with TrainPeaks. The ride video quality is nice and can compete with Zwift. The difference is that you can easily find a coach that will work with you. I recommend this app to those who are hooked on TrainingPeaks and want a cycling app that will keep up with their progress.

PELOTON

Subscription: $12/month for the app
Free trial: 30-day trial
Device Compatibility: Android, iOS, Amazon Fire, and website
Smart trainer compatibility: none

peloton app review

While Peloton is mostly known for its expensive bike, you do have the option to just use the app and use your own bike.

The workout library is full of workouts similar to spin classes but some are led by coaches, pro, and Olympic cyclists. These are very good workouts and are at the same level as leading cycling apps.

Once in the app, you can choose to do a “Live” workout class or one that was pre-recorded.

Programmed classes are a sequence of workouts arranged by days that last for several weeks. While collect classes are like a channel on Spotify.

For triathletes, the Power Zone workouts are probably ones that give you a good workout. These workouts are available in four week blocks and based on power zones. Just choose which one works best for you.

Cyclists who have this like it because it feels like they’re in a spin class and they can see how they rank to others in the class. It’s very interactive and there are a lot of spin-type classes to choose from. Most like that they can attend a live class without leaving their own house.

I recommend this to those who want a simple app that can give you workouts and some stats. Unfortunately, most of the stats. stay in the app and cannot be synced to third party apps.

BKOOL

Subscription: €9.99/month
Free trial: 30-day trial
Device Compatibility: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android
Smart trainer compatibility: Bluetooth, ANT+ FE-C

bkool cycling app review

BKool tries to compete with other cycling apps such as Zwift and offers subscribers an immersive training experience with smart and accessible plans. And, with any online app, there is a community of virtual riders to meet, ride, and race with.

The BKool simulation software is filmed from a cyclist’s point of view or a car’s point of view with many different courses to choose from. The more effort you use, the faster the bike “rides” on the screen.

On each route, there is a video, 3D representation of the world like Zwift, and a map-view. Choose whatever one you’d prefer.

If you have a smart trainer, the app can sync to it and will change the resistance according to the hill’s gradient.

What’s great about this cycling app is being able to see your efforts while you ride up a hill. And, the app does factor in actual weather and headwinds as if you were actually biking there.

Structured workouts are offered as an instructor-led version or with a scenic bike route.

You don’t need a smart trainer to reap the benefits of the app, but you do need a good internet connection and a decent screen to cast the videos.

Cyclists who have subscribed to the app like it because there are live-events and you can even see how close you are to “closing the gap”. After combing through the live-events, there are structured workouts to choose from that vary in length and intensity. Athletes can also sync the app to their training app. I recommend this cycling app to anyone who wants a lot of live-events to choose from. And, wants a social community without having to always bike in a virtual world.

TACX TRAINING

Subscription: $9.99/month or $99.99/year
Free trial: 10-day free trial
Device Compatibility: Windows, MacOS, iOS, Android, website
Smart trainer compatibility: Bluetooth, ANT+ FE-C

tacx training app review

The Tacx Training app offers high-quality films from different locations, live races with opponents, 3D GPS workouts, training plans, and workout builder. After each workout, you can analyze your data through the app or send it to a third party app.

Fortunately, you don’t need a smart trainer to have access to all these features. As long as you have sensors on your “dumb” trainer, you can still follow structured workouts with a view.

Tacx is always uploading new high-quality videos from around the world so you’ll always have somewhere new to explore.

Or, you can replay a ride you enjoy outdoors. You can upload your Strava data and the app will recreate it with hills and all. You also have the option to make up your ride. Your imagination is your limit.

You can follow a power-based structured workout that has a five-week work up to your goals. Or, you can create your own power-based workout centered around hills, power, heart rate, or FTP.

The training room features more specific workouts. You can ride a podcast-like grouping of routes over weeks. When you complete a challenge in the training room the company will send you a prize in the mail.

The downside to this app?

It only recognizes other Tacx smart trainers which can be frustrating if you are already set up with Wahoo.

Triathletes who have subscribed to the app like it because the videos are shot really well and work on any type of device. It works similar to Zwift, B Kool, and Xert, but really only works with Tacx smart trainers for some reason. I recommend this app only if you already have a Tacx smart trainer and want to enhance your experience on it.

TRAINER DAY

Subscription: Free or $3.99/month
Free trial: Until you pay for the cycling app
Device Compatibility: Windows, MacOS, iOS, Android
Smart trainer compatibility: Bluetooth and ANT+ FE-C

trainer day cycling app review

Trainer Day gives you a lot of perks without breaking the bank on you.

The app has “10-second start and zero clicks”, power and heart-rate based training, training plans, ride by feel, and over ten-thousands workouts to pick from.

The “10-second start and zero clicks” feature let you hop on the bike and start pedaling. You can choose your workout during your warm up-no problem.

During your warm-up, you can choose between power and heart rate-based training, or you can choose a workout from your library of saved workouts.

Not into a workout? No problem you can ride how you feel and add more resistance during the ride.

The Training Plan feature will break up a long workout into pieces so you can fit it in throughout the day.

Triathletes like this app because it is budget-friendly and still offers plenty of workouts. It does lack some features such as videos and live races. However, this app is still new and is always evolving. So in years to come this app will have more to offer its riders. I recommend this app to those who don’t want or need the extra features. And, it’s budget-friendly to those who are still getting their feet wet in the sport.

KINOMAP

Subscription: $9.99/month or $79.9/year
Free trial: 14-day free trial
Device Compatibility: iOS, Android
Smart trainer compatibility: Bluetooth and ANT+ FE-C

kinomap cycling app review

The Kinomap has one of the best connectivity options compared to other trainers. Any smart fitness device or trainer you have, the app will be able to connect to it.

The app has videos, coaching (sometimes with videos), and intervals for its workout features.

The coaching section combines the interval feature with a pre-recorded live coach and is synced to structured training. If you have a smart trainer, it will automatically adjust the resistance.

The videos section is what sells the app. The app offers thousands of videos from every part of the world. Some are shot from a GroPro while others were obviously filmed with high-quality equipment.

The coaching feature offers classes similar to Peloton, and others that are more tailored to endurance athletes.

The intervals option offers simplified yet effective training. It’s not as rigorous or well-researched as other companies, but it offers enough to keep you busy on the trainer.

If you have a smart trainer, the app will adjust the resistance accordingly. I’d recommend this app if you want to look at videos from real rides all over the globe. The coached workouts can help you mix it up between biking in different countries.

BIGRINGVR

Subscription: $10/month or $99/year
Free trial: 14-day free trial
Device Compatibility: Windows, MacOS
Smart trainer compatibility: ANT+ FE-C

bigringvr cycling app review

BigRingVR gives riders high-definition videos and a realistic virtual riding experience that incorporates your chosen workout for the day. Your smart trainer will adjust the resistance accordingly.

The built-in coach and workouts give you a variety of workouts to choose from. It will teach you how to pace yourself and how to use your power effectively.

The user dashboard features a search bar for rides you might like to check out. And, there are the challenges and leadership board tabs. You can see how you rank against other users on a specific route. Or, you can choose a challenge to do.

The app gives you news about the app and updates may be available soon. I recommend this app to those who want an app that is challenge-based with good videos.

Photo of author

Ryan Jones

Ryan Jones is a USA Triathlon Level 1 Certified Coach, USA Cycling Level 3 Certified Coach. Since graduating college, Ryan has coached over sixty triathletes, runners, cyclists, and swimmers. He focuses on helping them select appropriate goals and guiding them towards achieving them.

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