New Dunster Exercise Bikes are Tricked Out, Virtually

Video game junkies might have new motivation to get off the couch and onto a bicycle, thanks to two new spiffy pieces of exercise equipment in the Dunster House cardio room. Virtual reality meets aerobics in a pair of Trixter stationary bicycles, equipped with interactive screens that, à la Mario Kart, simulate rugged outdoor courses.

Take a trip down to the bowels of Dunster's I entryway to check out the tricked out bikes, which include handlebar brakes, front and rear gear adjustments, a water holder, and some snazzy-looking foot straps. An added bonus: the bikes have a headphone hook-up that tunes into the likes of Cyndi Lauper.

On the software side, the virtual routes vary in difficulty (as we learned, sweatily) and are titled "parkland," "semi-arid," "desert," and "highlands." As you pedal faster (or slower), the virtual (and toned!) legs of your brawny digital counterpart adjust accordingly. Race a (human) friend in "multiplayer" mode.

A warning to the couch potato cohort: this is not exercise-lite. After one lap, this Flyby correspondent was out of breath.

Photo by Melody Y. Hu/The Harvard Crimson.

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