Global Ride: Strendurance in Hawaii

Sally Edwards, Matty Reed, Massimiliano Zambiani
Year Released: 2009

Categories: Indoor Cycling

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About Global Ride: The producers of Global Ride DVDs wanted to create a product for home exercisers which would bridge the gap between hard-core road cyclists and those of us who are confirmed spinners. In researching what consumers want in a virtual cycling DVD, the No. 1 thing they didn't care for was "looking at people's sweaty butts", so the Global Ride DVDs are marketed as "butt-free"! This means that the on-screen image is pure virtual reality. The ride is shot from the cyclist's speed and perspective, so you see exactly what you would see if you were cycling the highway in real life, with no shots of other cyclists. In this respect, the Global Ride DVDs are the most faithful to virtual reality compared with similar products.

Each DVD offers four different coaching tracks, with the choice of three international coaches, plus a live track from a spinning class using the DVD. So you can ride with a different coach each time, choose the one whose personality and coaching style appeals best, or soak up the energy from a spinning class. All the coaches coach in real time as they ride with you; you can hear them breathing hard and the grinding of their trainer. Or you can select the "music only" option and just enjoy the music and scenery.

Each DVD also offers a bonus cross-training segment. Strendurance in Hawaii features a 30-minute strength training for cyclists session. Unfortunately, these sessions do not have great production values: the sound and vision are very out of sync which makes them almost unwatchable, and the session is filmed on a cheap-looking set.

The Global Ride DVDs are not without their critics. The on-road segments do have some camera shake. This doesn’t bother me, but some people are sensitive to it. Another flaw is that the disks use vocal music, which can make it hard to hear the coaching at times. Again, this doesn’t bother me, but your mileage may vary.

You can see clips of the rides, listen to samples of the music, and order the DVDs from

About Strendurance in Hawaii

My favourite Strendurance in Hawaii coach is Sally Edwards, the woman behind the Heart Zones Training system, and a professional triathlete. As you would expect, her coaching focuses on heart rate training; as she is training with a cadence meter she also gives cues on your target cadence. As you are riding along a flat stretch of road, Sally says, "See that mountain up ahead? That's where we'll be riding". The first time I did the DVD, I thought "Gah! You have to be kidding!" But we did. Sally expertly coached me through a series of "rollers", using both seated and standing climbs, as we worked our way uphill. The total working time for the ride, including the warm-up but excluding the cool-down, was 49 minutes. I was pleased, but not surprised, to see that I had achieved a personal best in my calorie burn per minute. This would be a great DVD for fans of hill training.

Ratings out of five:
Production values (ride only) ****˝
Workout design *****

Instruction *****

Fun factor *****

Music ****
Meets expectations *****

Overall 4.75

Instructor Comments:
The coaches’ years of training and cycling experience shows in the quality of their coaching.