Wattage Cheating


I’ve seen some strange results come up for another Zwifter, basically knocked 30 minutes off of Alpe PR, going from 90 mins to 58 mins. When looking at the segments for the whole climb and then individual segments the wattage is all short high spikes and then dropping to below 100 watts, rather than a smoothish power delivery. This looks like a wattage cheat, hard pedalling for a few seconds then stopping, but gaining a free 2-3 seconds of sustained power for no effort, rinse & repeat?
Screen shots attached.

What’s everyone’s thoughts?

My thought is that if someone wants to rig a lawnmower to a trainer and watch it go up the Alpe, so be it. It does not stop me from training, it does not detrain me, it does nothing to me.


There will always be cheaters; I have no time to report them all. Let those whose own results are impacted report them.


Yeah that looks like a known cheat to get some free wattage and bump numbers…

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that’s a lot of research into someone else’s ride

couldn’t you be doing something useful like cleaning your drivetrain instead?


Loads of cheaters…
I saw a portuguese, go up the epic KOM then Radio tower, maintaining an exact 4.8w/kg without it moving on a TT bike.
Yep there was no 4.7 or 4.9.

I don’t even bother reporting those idiots. If they are literally cheating on Zwift, I doubt they can even look at themselves in the mirror.

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Just asking a question to get an understanding, so if the boast of beating someone’s PB comes up the reply could be “Well done, now try it without using a well known cheat”
Obviously each to their own, if people want to fiddle their stats it’s up to them, only cheating themselves really.
Drivetrain is currently spotless, although maybe shouldn’t have used Squirt chain wax on the trainer bike, heard it comes off in bits, not good for flooring!!


That sounds like someone who has a problem with people investigating against cheaters…
You got a bad conscience?

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Dear Rob:

Yeah, I sympathise. 100%.

I noticed, a long time ago, that there were all sorts of records of people doing climbs and other segments that totally violated the laws of physics (let alone human physiology) on Strava and other such websites.

The short answer I got was that it was because some people liked to use “meet up” rides or similar, and that the rest of us would just have to tolerate it. OK.

As I noted at the time: This isn’t taking anything away from ME. Because I’m never going to legitimately challenge a KOM record. Who it is hurting are the legitimate athletic champions. The people who really can climb Alpe du Zwift in 41 minutes. Not the bullshitters who apparently cruise up there outputting 180 watts at 36 km/hr.

The best I can tell you is to smile, and relax. The real world can tell the wheat from the chaff.


yes it is cheating: https://zwiftinsider.com/sticky-watts/
and if it was in an event should be enough to get a DQ if raised to event organisers.
apart from that, only one they’re cheating is themself, and will be good fun when they get smashed up outdoors :slight_smile:


Hi Andrew,

Thanks for the reply. No sympathy required here.
As you say it could affect genuine contenders in races etc. Those who use it for bragging rights are only cheating themselves and will get found out eventually.

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Interesting read Ben, seems this is a well known issue that’s been exploited.

What’s wrong with cheating ?

I ask this because Zwift encourages you to cheat !

I can weigh 50 kg today and 100 kg tomorrow.

Also; Power-Ups are the mother of cheating. Basically they are cheats since they are not coming from your legs. Also, they exacerbate the difference in riders abilities so they are not only cheats, they are also not fair.

Calling Zwift a ‘game’ doesn’t mean you can destroy EVERYONE’S joy in Zwift. Also; why cross platform and not silly-power up-cheat-events only, specifically for riders with a childish desire for cheating and making everything easier and easier and easier ? Weight doping is a bad enough phenomenon already. Power-ups are making them even more super-human.

Let’s call Zwift a game. If you call it a game, all is fair and cheating is a fact of gaming…

Wait ! What ? It’s already called a game ?
Okay then ! Lets toy with the settings, weight, use Zwift’s very own home brewed cheats which are called Power-Ups !

No whining ! It’s a game so don’t be a sore loser. Want to win ? Get better at cheating !

Except that the vast majority of online games have extensive measures in place to guard against cheating.


Power ups are cheating but for a limited time and all of us have access to power ups.
Modifying your weight/height, or using an electric bike is cheating during the whole session, and not fair compared to the ones that are “playing” regularly.

Anyway, as most said, there will always people cheating. I don’t care about them as it does not impact my ride in zwift and the way I enjoyed zwift. I simply do not take them into consideration, they do not deserve it.


And most of them still fail and do very little because they are still getting those people’s money anyways

It is not a cheat if everyone has access to it fairly with in the game as it is a feature.

I assume you refer to power-ups and not to lawnmowers rigged to trainers.

I have a good friend who uses Squirt with no issue