Anyone else suffer Zwift Migraine?

Weird one this. I’ve had about 3 or 4 migraines in my 50 or so years …but recently I’ve had 2 come on near the end of a Zwift ride. One was flat out but today was moderately paced. Anyone else experienced this or any ideas why it might be? I’m not blaming Zwift by the way :grin::grin::grin:

What courses were you doing when the migraines came on? And what camera view do you use? Just wondering if it’s a motion thing.

And what sort of device are you looking at, how big a screen and how far away?

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I hadn’t thought about the screen issues, but my husband normally gets migraines when he has not eaten enough and then gets dehydrated. Try drinking and add a nuun tablet (other brands available) for salts. Water with not salts goes straight through and isn’t absorbed

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Exercise induced migraines are a thing. I have given myself a couple after a grueling Zwift workout. I had a spate of several but haven’t had one lately. One of them was a doozy.

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Thanks. Been on various distances and done loads of rides with no ill effects so I don’t think it’s that. Obviously I’m not sure and thanks for your help. I’ll try changing the camera angle to see

Thanks. I’m sort of thinking it’s dehydration based although I was trying to drink plenty. I’ll look into that to see if it’s a possibility.

If it happened every time we rode it wouldn’t be long before we would throw in the. towel. Migraines are probably one of the most complicated medical problems to unravel. If you ever have known someone with the debilitating kind you will know how insanely difficult of a problem it is. You know the old aphorism, “Take to aspirin and call me in the morning.”

Also, do you sweat a lot of salt? Turns out that there is huge variety in how much we sweat, and how much salt we lose. I am not allowed to put a link in but there is an interesting article in the new scientist about more salt and fewer migraines. Sounds interesting does-eating-more-salt-prevent-migraines-and-severe-headaches/

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As I think Steve was suggesting, another thing to think about could be your eyes and the distance from the screen.

You tend to use long distance vision in real life but short / middle-distance on Zwift. And you don’t tend to spend as much time trying to read data on a screen in real life. Could have an impact.

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Thanks everyone for your suggestions and advice. I am wondering now whether it could be the screen issue that Steve/Paul have mentioned. I am an old git and now wear glasses for close up vision, so maybe using a laptop sceen is affecting me. I struggle to read the names on the right side of the page on zwift, so it makes sense that if im struggling to focus it may give me headaches.

Ill look into alternatives such a s a bigger screen etc. Thanks again everyone, much appreciated

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I had the same issue in the past, but it had something to do with salt.
After heavy training, I had a real headache afterwards, but it quickly disappeared after eating something salty.
Training indoors you are more likely to sweat more than outside…
Adding a pinch of salt to my bottles when I know I’m going to sweat a lot got me rid of this issue! All the mineral stuff with flavour has actually quite a good part salt in it.
If you can taste the salt in the water it’s too much!
Just a slight hint of salt is OK

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Cheers Markus. Funnily enough ive got some salt tablets that i have used in the past…but forgotten about them. I do lose a load of sweat, as do most people, when on the turbo so perhaps i need to go back to those as well. Thanks

I uninstalled Zwift about 2 months ago after experiencing more frequent migraines after exercise. I had previously used Zwift for about 2 years without any migraine issues and I haven’t changed up the view, distance of the monitor, resolution, or anything else that I could see that would lead for this to happen. My migraines have also included blind spots in both eyes. I have suffered from migraines from playing video games in the past (which I’ve discontinued completely) and from using a computer screen for hours at a time, but never from using Zwift for up to 2 hours, until about 2 months ago.

I’ve tried using trainerroad but it’s far too boring for me. I need the competitiveness of Zwift to increase my cycling strength and I’ve found that my FTP has increased significantly since I stop using the program. Any suggestions on what I can do to prevent migraines? I know I haven’t provided much information, but any suggestions in addition to what’s already been posted in this thread will help.

Thanks,

James

Hi James…touch wood, but since I wrote this post I haven’t suffered any more migraines. Whether that is down to the changes I’ve made or something I don’t know, but here’s what I have done so far…

  1. Added a 21 inch monitor (old tv) so bigger than the 15 inch laptop screen

2 Added vit c to my water and always finish one bottle before I do a race. I also drink another bottle straight after

3 if a hard or really sweaty ride, I take a salt tablet half way through

4 I train in the garage, open the back door and try and look at something else for a bit

5 I moved slightly further back from the screen.

Like I say, some medical expert may tell you that none of these make a blind bit of difference, but I’ve not had once since I did them.

You sound exactly the same as me…I tried Rouvy and Bkool but I need the chase or I can’t get motivated. Trainer road to me looks like my worst nightmare.

Anyway, good luck, see how you get on

Nick

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I get migraines whenever I do extremely hard endurance efforts. I do think that it’s exercise induced and stems from water imbalance in my brain; Sort of equivalent to hitting the wall in a marathon where you cannot replenish glucose fast enough.

I don’t think it’s Zwift. Set a timer and drink a small cup of water with electrolytes every 15 minutes and see how you go.

Another option (I am not a doctor and I am not dispensing medical advice simply anecdotal information which you may uptake at your own risk) may be to take half an asprin before something like an Über pretzel.

Let us know how you get on.

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I have started drinking Body Armor sports drink. I find that I drink more often and I am taking in some carbs while I ride. I haven’t had an exercise induced migraine recently. I was sure one of my causes was weight workouts. Lately that doesn’t seem to be true. The other possibility, I thought, was extreme Zwift experiences. Been through four 50+k races in recent weeks and no migraine. To be continued…

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I appreciate all the advice Nick, David, and Greg. I’ll give your suggestions a try and give an update on what changes I made and if my migraines have been reduced. Looking forward to giving Zwift another try.

Hi. This comes because of stress. I would bet a pretty big amount of money on it however.

Yes mate I had this quite regularly and put a post up similar to yours. Touch wood I’ve not had it since I made a few changes…

Bought a slightly bigger screen
Moved slightly further back
Always drink plenty
Open the garage door so I can look around to stop focusing so hard on the screen.

Not such which has been the one, or indeed it’s just luck but see how you go

To be honest the best advice is ‘see your doctor’. It’s probably nothing but diagnosing without an examination is problematic.

Dr. Colin

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