Peloton needs more 45 and 60 min structured classes

In recent months Peloton appears to have shifted their focus away from 45 and 60 min classes. They are producing a disproportionate amount of 20 and 30 min classes while leaving those of us who rely on 45 and 60 min classes in the dust. I feel Peloton is doing themselves and their customers a disservice.

There are thousands of on-demand 45 min long classes. Let’s narrow down the search, however, and see what’s available:

  • 402 “Intervals” classes,
  • 39 “Climb” classes,
  • 138 “Power Zone” classes,
  • 23 “Metrics,”
  • 56 “Heart Rate Zone” — which have not been produced since the fall of 2019,

If you narrow down the “Intervals” even further, you are down to a handful of “Tabata,” “HIIT,” or “HIIT and Hills.”

Even though there are over 2000 45 min classes out there in the on-demand library, only about 600 or 700 are structured training. Chances are if you had Peloton for two years, and you focused on Power Zone training, you have taken them all.

There is only 162 total of 60 min long classes, of which only 43 are Power Zone (all by the same instructor), and only 15 climbs. If you used Peloton for outdoor climb training, you have likely taken all 60 min classes more than once in the past few months.

In other words, for those of us who rely on Peloton for structured training and coaching, Peloton turned themselves into a sophisticated collection of exercise videos. They expect us to play the videos over and over and over again, ad nauseam.

Fundamentally, there is nothing wrong with taking the same class more than once. Many people do that. I’m not too fond of that. While I rarely take live classes, I do enjoy taking current classes. I want the instructors talking about current things, like the weather in New York, or Christine D’Ercole’s cycling accomplishments. I feel more like a part of the community taking recent classes than repeatedly taking old classes recorded at some detached point in time.

I am willing to concede that 60 mins and longer are the domain of advanced riders. It’s questionable whether the spin class format is conducive to classes longer than that. I get it. I cycle outdoors or in Zwift for longer workouts.

The silver lining is that short spin classes made me less lazy about planning my workouts. These days, I do 30-45 mins on the bike, and then I do strength or yoga and stretching. Holistically, this is a better approach than just spinning all the time like I used to. I see results, and they are better.

Something tells me this is not a temporary “COVID Glitch.” They seem to have made a strategic decision pre-COVID to focus on content that appeals to a mass audience. The majority of the population want a holistic at-home gym experience, rather than specialized cycling training. If Peloton’s goal is to push to a more holistic experience, then they need to put up programs and training plans on the tablet.

Categories: Analysis

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