Wahoo has just launched what it calls a 'complete training app for endurance athletes'. More specifically, it has unveiled Systm, its first full foray into the software space, as it completely overhauls the Sufferfest platform it acquired in 2019.
Wahoo has long had a very strong hand in indoor cycling hardware. Its Kickr V5 turbo trainer is one of four trainers from the brand and it also offers a host of peripheral equipment such as the Headwind smart fan, desks and more to improve and add enjoyment and realism to the experience.
The brand telegraphed its intentions to dominate the indoor space when it acquired The Sufferfest in July 2019, a leading indoor cycling app targeted at helping and motivating cyclists to train and get fitter.
In the years since, Wahoo has been working hard behind the scenes to overhaul the platform and today, the fruits of that labour are laid bare as the brand unveils Systm, its new app that it claims will sit at the centre of its ecosystem of products.
Unlike Wahoo SUF, which was Wahoo's original rebranding of the Sufferfest platform, Systm represents a wholesale overhaul with a new code-base, a host of new features, and Android smartphone compatibility.
“Wahoo’s mission has always been to create the easiest-to-use connected fitness training tools and devices," said Wahoo CEO, Mike Saturnia. "Systm is a perfect complement to our hardware - it’s a training platform that serves athletes of all levels, from weekend warriors to aspiring professionals.”
Wahoo has retained The Sufferfest's proprietary power testing protocol, 4DP® (Four-Dimensional Power), as the foundation for its workouts, and has retained all of the Sufferfest workouts with 'Sufferlandrian' theme, pro-race footage and humour-led motivational commentary.
However, Wahoo claims that training has to be motivating to be effective, and to that end, those workouts are joined by a host of new immersive workout-adjacent content. These include 'OnLocation', which will include guided tours of famous cycling routes; 'Inspiration', which will be made up of cycling-based films and documentaries to accompany easy-intensity rides; and ProRides, which will overlay onboard footage from a pro race onto the same rider's power file (which has been converted into a workout), accompanied by highly motivating audio instruction from a faux directeur sportif.
Other ride types include 'GCN', which are spinning-style instructor-led workouts hosted by one of the GCN presenters; and 'A Week With', in which a user can ride seven days worth of workouts, all presented by a single celebrity or coach, allowing you to get to know them as you ride, and keep you motivated along the way. At launch, only two of these will exist - Unbound Gravel winner, Ian Boswell, or Head Coach Neal Henderson - but Wahoo claims more will follow.
In addition to the on-bike workouts, Wahoo has continued to serve multisport athletes with run and swim workouts, yoga, mental toughness, and strength workouts. These strength sessions will vastly expand upon the existing collection with new workouts designed to better target specific areas of weakness or imbalance. To top it all off, Wahoo has also unveiled a podcast, called 'The Knowledge', which comprises 15-minute deep-dives into specific training topics.
“We set out to build the most comprehensive training app available," explained The Sufferfest founder, David McQuillen, who currently resides as Wahoo’s head of Training Services. "Incorporating engaging content, the best sports science, useful training tips delivered in plain language, and tools that empower athletes across the spectrum to achieve their unique fitness goals."
However, McQuillen proclaimed to Cyclingnews that this is just the beginning, and various improvements to Systm are already in the works, including post-ride analysis, the ability to perform the cycling workouts outside, and more.
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Josh has been with us as Senior Tech Writer since the summer of 2019 and throughout that time he's covered everything from buyer's guides and deals to the latest tech news and reviews. On the bike, Josh has been riding and racing for over 15 years. He started out racing cross country in his teens back when 26-inch wheels and triple chainsets were still mainstream, but he found favour in road racing in his early 20s, racing at a local and national level for Team Tor 2000. He's always keen to get his hands on the newest tech, and while he enjoys a good long road race, he's much more at home in a local criterium.
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