Saddling up for a cycling class is a commitment. At the beginning of class, riders put their feet into the pedals and settle into their fate for 45 to 60 minutes. With that kind of commitment, cyclers are coming to expect a lot from classes on a bike. They want data. They want interactivity. They want teamwork. They want competition. Fanatics of indoor biking can now find all of that in one class – The Pursuit by Equinox.
(Image courtesy of Equinox)
The moment riders start to spin their pedals in The Pursuit, the connection between the work the riders are doing and the large, projection screen at the front of the room is created. The screen at the front of the dark, club-beat bumping cycling room is the heart of the class, showing a mix of visualizations that display all of the work that everyone in the room is doing.
Those beautiful visualization can be found in two different versions of the class – The Pursuit: Build and The Pursuit: Burn. The Pursuit: Build is designed to improve endurance, increase strength and improve riders’ ability to work harder for longer. The Pursuit: Burn is a ride made up of HIIT intervals to maximize performance and optimize caloric expenditure.
In my first pass at The Pursuit, I stumbled into a Burn class. Throughout the workout, a mix of individual challenges and team challenges drove the action. Making the in-class games interactive? That giant screen full of graphics, which displayed all of the action in the room and, after all, a picture is worth a thousand words.
Using real-time stats from the bikes in the room, the display at the front of the room showed graphics that responded to how much resistance was on each bike and how quickly each participant was peddling. Each bike was represented by a circle that resembled the sun and burned a little brighter whenever we worked a little harder.
(Image courtesy of Equinox)
The first game we played was one of technique and control. We were challenged to keep our RPMs within a set of specific ranges, but to track that that, riders had to watch the glowing ball that represented their bike and keep it from going above or below a line that represented the top and the bottom of our pre-determined RPM range. It’s harder than it sounds (or easier, depending on when you’re reading this).
After that first challenge, it was clear that we’d either learn to love or hate the screen ahead of us, but we’d need it to know how we were doing. Adding onto the layers of data-driven challenges: we were working as a class to reach a calorie burn goal of 8,400. Not bad for a Wednesday morning.
Our subsequent challenges broke the class into teams fighting for the fastest relay race time or the greatest distance traveled over the course of a challenge time.
After the sweaty bodies cleared the room, that data that riders worked so hard to generate doesn’t just disappear. Those stats are fed into Equinox’s website where members can view and track progress.
This data-driven approach to cycling can now be found in all of Equinox’s cycling classes via Connected Cycling, its new digital coaching platform. Connected Cycling delivers performance data and insights to members, whether they’re taking The Pursuit or another Equinox cycling class. Even more importantly, members are able to track their performance over time in addition to engaging with other riders within the Equinox community.
Want to try the class? Take a gander at the directions below.
Gym: Equinox Gold Coast, 900 N Michigan (The Pursuit is currently only available at the Gold Coast Location)
Class focus: Part video game, part cycling class, all hard work.
Cost per class: Equinox is membership-based, but aSweatLife readers can try one class for free. Email [email protected]