Play Controller & KICKR Bike?

When using the Kickr Bike, if the Zwift Play Controller is connected via BT Steering will that disable the Kickr Bike’s steering, braking, gradient & u-turn buttons?


Great question! One of my colleagues verified with his KICKR Bike.

KICKR Bike and Play can be paired as steering devices simultaneously if both are paired over Bluetooth LE (BLE). The bike’s U-Turn and gradient buttons work while Play is paired.

*If KICKR Bike is paired over ANT+ and Play is paired over BLE, an error notification appears on the Pairing menu stating the devices aren’t compatible with each other. This is relevant to Windows and macOS users who have ANT+ capability with a USB dongle. iOS and AppleTV do not support pairing over ANT+.

It’s also important to note the braking behavior of each is different. Play braking will only slow your avatar down. KICKR Bike braking adds resistance to your trainer (ultimately slowing your avatar).

*Note- pairing behavior over ANT+ is as of June 2023. This may / may not evolve over time.


Many thanks Shuji.

So from what you’re saying, I would still be able to steer using my Kickr Bike’s buttons if both are paired over BT?

The reason I ask, is because my PC keyboard/mouse is not in reach and the Play Controller would be a really helpful addition providing it doesn’t affect the functionality of my existing Kickr Bike buttons - which I use all the time.

I hope this topic will help others who may be wondering the same.


Two of my colleagues own KICKR Bikes and say yes to your question and pass along a pro tip. If you pair both KICKR steering and Play steering at the same time - leave them both paired for the duration of your ride. Unpairing / re-pairing gets convoluted if you don’t heed this advice.

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Useful info… thanks @Nick and @shooj :+1:

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For Play + KICKR Bike owners who google their way to this thread in the future - welcome!

If you are struggling with the unpairing / simultaneous re-pairing of both KICKR steering and Play steering - the quickest solve is delete the knowndevices.xml file.

This file remembers what devices (power, controllable, cadence, heart rate, steering, etc) you’ve paired to in the past. Deleting it will clear the slate the next time you log in to Zwift.

PC / macOS how-to

  • Open the Documents\Zwift folder
  • Delete the knowndevices.xml file (this image is Windows Explorer, but it’s nearly identical in Mac Finder)
  • Restart Zwift.
  • Keep both KICKR steering and Play steering paired at all times.

iOS / AppleTV / Android how-to:
Mobile OSs are much more locked down security-wise and don’t allow you to delete one specific system file.

  • Uninstall Zwift, then re-install.
  • Start Zwift.
  • Keep both KICKR steering and Play steering paired at all times.

I don’t know if this is the right place for this bug/issue/headsup:

after installing the play controllers on our Kickr Bike (V1) and pairing the controllers to Zwift while disabeling Kickr Bike steering I was able to complete the tutorial, but steering did not work (no steering icon either).

Do I have to keep them both enabled to use the steering function of the play controllers? Not that that’s a big issue, but it surprised me a bit :slight_smile:

If you have both Kickr Bike Steering and Play Steering enabled, you’ll need to keep both enabled for that session.

If you want to just use Play Steering only (i.e. no Kickr Bike Steering), then you can close Zwift, follow Shuji’s recommendation above to clear your known devices, and then only pair Play Steering during that session. We’re working on improving this experience.

I noticed a couple of things while using the Zwift Play and Kickr Bike on Windows 11. I have my Kickr paired as a Power Source and Cadence using ANT+ (Not connected as a Controllable device as I used separate App for ERG mode) and the Zwift Play paired for Steering.

Firstly I was still able to Steer and use Power Ups using the Kickr bike buttons as well as the Zwift Play buttons even though the Kickr Bike wasn’t paired using Bluetooth for any of the Devices.

Secondly and not related to the Kickr Bike I was able to Issue twice as many Ride On Bombs as usual as I could use both the Companion App and the Zwift Play.

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I moved your post into the thread already under way. Please see the posts above yours.

My setup experience: When I set them up , they both claimed to be connected. But the left one didn’t work. Quit Zwift, deleted that file, restarted and reconnected. Everything works fine. Steering feels very cave man though - no finesse. Completed repac ridge game but missed lots of stuff.

Bike and Play steering both work

Same experience here. I paired the Play controllers and UNCHECKED Kickr Bike Steering, but was still able to use the Kickr Bike buttons. That’s actually a problem, because with the Play controllers positioned as they are, it’s next to impossible to use them AND avoid inadvertently pressing the Kickr Bike steering buttons.
What’s worse, the mysterious Kickr Bike steering bug where one gets glued to either the right or left side still seems to happen in this configuration. Had it happen today, in fact.
I don’t know if it is connected to Kickr Bike steering and will stop happening if that could actually be properly disabled, or whether it’s a generic bug, e.g. due to my account being in some weird two year old unmaintained A/B test cell.

I’ve tried the above suggestion, and it looks like my controllers are paired, however, the left controller either lags by 3 seconds or becomes non-responsive.

Essentially it will work then stop. You can see it pairing and disconnecting on the Paired Devices Dash.

All firmware is up-to-date and I am running these on a Windows 10 OS.

This is what I do. And things mostly work reliably. Occasionally one of the controllers will randomly drop out but usually it reconnects in a minute or two.

I didn’t need to clear known devices but I definitely don’t pair Kickr bike steering.

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I have experienced that my Kickr Bike and my HR monitor started to have difficulties to pair with my Windows 11 computer after having added Zwift Play controllers. This can be avoided if I turn on the Zwift Play Controllers only after Kickr Bike and HR monitor have been connected, which I do now every time.

It is impressive, how instantly my computer connects with Zwift Play controllers after having them turned on. Wish that this would be the same with my Kickr Bike and my Tickr Fit HR monitor, which often need some time to properly connect.