Q: What is category enforcement?
A: Category enforcement examines a Zwifter’s historical performances based on power curve data and then identifies the best minimum category they can join for a race. Category enforcement prevents a Zwifter from joining a category that’s too easy for them based on their power data.
Q: Why is category enforcement beneficial?
A: Category enforcement provides a fair race environment by calculating a minimum category to compete in based on each Zwifter’s power curve data.
Q: How do I know what category is considered the “right” one for me?
A: The lowest available category you see when signing up for an event is the category you’ll likely find the most appropriate based on your historical power performance. The choice is yours, of course, if you’d like to race in a higher category or not.
Q: How is my minimum category calculated?
A: We take a historical look at your maximum values for VO2max, Maximum Aerobic Power (MAP), and Critical Power as it’s captured in Zwift for all activities over the previous 60 days. Every ride you do in Zwift—regardless of if you’ve saved the ride or not—saves the power data that we use to determine your available categories. Check out the category minimums for more info.
|If you don’t have any activity in Zwift for the previous 60 days, you can race in category E if it’s available. Or, you can do some activities in Zwift to build up your data in order that we can calculate your minimum category.|
Q: What are the values for the category minimums?
If any of your maximum values are equal to or above the minimums shown in the following tables, you’ll only be able to race in that category or higher. For example—in a women’s only race—if your MAP value is 4.3W/kg you can race in categories B or A. In an open race, if your MAP value is 3.2W/kg and your watts are 140, you can race in categories D, C, B, or A.
|Anyone who doesn’t have any activity on Zwift within the previous 60 days can only race in category E. Category E is optional, and must be requested by the race organizer.|
|Open Races||VO2max and Watts||MAP value and Watts||Critical Power and Watts|
|Category A||≥60 and ≥250W||≥5.4W/kg (65 VO2) and ≥250W||≥4.2W/kg and ≥250W|
|Category B||≥50 and ≥200W||≥4.2W/kg (55 VO2) and ≥200W||≥3.36W/kg and ≥200W|
|Category C||≥45 and ≥150W||≥3.3W/kg (45 VO2) and ≥150W||≥2.625W/kg and ≥150W|
|Category D||<45 and <150W||<3.3W/kg (45 VO2) and <150W||<2.625W/kg and <150W|
|Women Only Races||MAP value||Critical Power|
Q: Why can I still join categories that might be too hard for me?
A: We believe in the philosophy of racing up. The lowest category visible when you’re signing up is likely the best fit, but if you’d like to race in a potentially more challenging environment we leave the option open for you.
Q: My fitness has changed within the last 60 days and my category is no longer reflective of my ability, what do I do?
A: Your options differ depending on how your ability has changed. Since your minimum category is calculated from your maximum efforts, your may need to wait until your previous data passes 60 days so it’s not included in the calculations. Or, you may want to ride more on Zwift so your higher maximums are included in the calculations.
Q: Is category enforcement always on? How do I know if category enforcement is being used in an event?
A: No, category enforcement is an optional race rule. There should be mention of category enforcement in the event title or description, but if there’s a limited selection of categories for you to join, category enforcement is likely being used.
Q: What happens to my category if my trainer or power meter misreports my power numbers?
A: Your category is based on the data provided by your trainer or power meter, we recommend calibrating your devices on a regular basis so the info provided is as accurate as possible to give you the best experience.
Q: Someone in my household used my account and my category has changed, what can I do?
A: Remember, your Zwift account is for your use only. If someone else has used your account, you’ll have to wait until 60 days has passed so their data isn’t included in the calculations.
Q: Will the categories available to me in Zwift be the same as my categories in ZwiftPower?
A: Not necessarily, ZwiftPower is a supplement to Zwift that can use its own custom rules and category limits. Your info in ZwiftPower doesn’t dictate your available categories in Zwift, your rides in Zwift are used to determine your available categories.
Q: Will I be able to see riders from other categories in the results for category enforced events on ZwiftPower?
A: Yes. Every race will have results for A-D categories available and A-E if category E was requested. Remember, the categories you see when signing up for the event are the categories available for you to race in, with the lowest category visible being the best fit.
Q: Is this like WTRL’s auto categorization?
A: No. Category enforcement isn’t designed to automatically place you in a category. It’s designed to show you the categories available to you to race in, with the lowest available category being the most accurate match to your power.