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The best indoor smart trainers

James Varner - Thursday, January 18, 2018

Wahoo Fitness wasn’t the first to introduce a computer-controlled indoor trainer when it debuted the original KICKR at the 2012 Interbike show. At the time, its lofty price tag was deemed highly aspirational by critics, but the way the KICKR automatically adjusted its resistance in response to terrain changes on the compatible TrainerRoad and Kinomap software packages was a dramatic leap forward from what CompuTrainer offered at the time.

It was only when online cycling simulator Zwift came on the scene late in 2014, however, that Wahoo Fitness found itself in prime position as one of the only trainers on the market to be fully compatible with the exciting new virtual-reality environment. Suddenly the idea of a trainer that cost upwards of US$1,000 didn’t seem to insane. Since then, other companies have followed suit with high-end trainers of their own, and despite initial doubts, the segment has exploded.

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