How to read the elevation profile while riding?

Few examples:

  • drafting not intuitive
  • What does Average Power mean during a ramp test? (i now know but this is poorly done)
  • Average power in ramp test covers other text.
  • Initial ramp test too easy for many users. Why not in zwift 101 just include a slightly longer test?
  • No mention of race lead in’s anywhere.

There’s heaps more examples, just have a look here:

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Thanks Gerrie,
I did see the profile superimposed in the same screen as the ascent/descent%. However when I did the mountain loop, I reached the top of the hill in the profile and was expecting a long downhill. Suddenly that profile changed and I was climbing 14-17%.

Thanks for the link. Great info there. But do you know if there is anywhere I can go to view the route and the profile ahead of riding it? That would really help. Just giving the total ascent doesn’t really tell you what kind of route it is.

Hi Frank,

Yeah you can see route details here on this third party website:

Oh no, Zwift wouldn’t want to integrate route details into the actual game, why would the users want that?! That would be so unintuitive…


Hi @Frank_Wilkes

That link has all the details you are looking for, just click on the route that you want to ride.

this is the Mountian route you rode.

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Awesome! That’s exactly what I was looking for! Just to show you what happened to me, this youtube video shows the same thing. Check out minute 20 mark of this video. It shows you reaching the top of the hill. This is where I thought I had a long downhill coming and got smacked in the face with a brutal 14-18% climb instead.

The profile on Zwift doesn’t show the route you’re doing, but the default direction. Not sure why.

Yes Frank this was brought up before. Zwift has a prescribed route profile that it think you will follow, this is usually the most popular route. I have hear that there is work underway to change this behavior, but like all good things it does take time.

I’ve been scratching my head to understand that profile for 2 months now. Sometimes it’s left-to-right, sometimes right-to-left, sometimes it just vanishes and resets - I’ve selected a route, I’ve not done a single deviation from that route, you know where I’m going, don’t you? Start doing the weirdo things if I deviate, ok?

Yeah somehow Zwift decided to not show the route you’re actually doing, but to show the route that’s most popular. Very silly.

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I think there are two basic improvements that would help:

  1. Make the direction arrow on the route profile more obvious. I did not realise until reading this thread that there was an arrow and had wondered why direction was seemingly random
  2. Show the profile of the actual route you are riding. I am not sure why it would show anything else to be honest.

Agreed. Though the direction arrow does not even need a direction. Always point right and have the next kms shown on the elevation map.


I am in this boat too. Zwifting for 2 years now and just learned about the arrow in this thread. Never could tell by looking at the profile if I was going left to right or vice versa.

Either always left to right or a much bigger arrow please.

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at the bottom of the profile…what does the the big green dot and Zwift dot represent?

Re direction of travel; I assumed it was always going right until i read this. I didn’t know about the arrow either. Really hard to see on an iPad. I guess it kinda makes sense, though, say for instance you did a U-turn and are now going the other way.

I might have this wrong @Jason_Hand but the green is the sprint banner (the green fluro line across the road) and the Z is the finish of the race/ride you are on. I have 55inch tv but pc only supports 1080p so I dont see granularity for small changes in rides like Sand & Sequoias, but do get the general gist of whats coming next that will hurt or provide some relief :wink:

Green is a sprint banner, and Zwift dot is the Finish banner and the red polka dot is the KOM banner


Imagine a car GPS that switches from direction-up to direction-down once in a while depending on which road you’re in and what the most popular direction for driving that road is, and you get the “logic” of this UI element.

The simple concept of “sometimes it’s left to right, sometimes right to left” is baffling. At least they didn’t extend this “concept” to the graphs at the bottom of the screen.


I too find this odd - the map view does cycle round different views but a perspective of the course with the terrain indicated would be super helpful. I had exactly the same feeling on exactly the same course - a climb that goes on forever that you don’t know if it ever has a down! It is a bizarre omission in my view.