Many sports require some form of physical activity in the outdoors, with lush greens and smooth tarmacs complimenting goal posts and mountainous rises.
But Covid-19 has done its best to pull the red card on that.
The restricted ability to revel with a ball or a bike amid lockdowns, here and around the world, has opened the door for a more advanced form of physical activity to take centre stage.
Zwift is an online cycling training program, enabling users to pedal in a virtual world with anyone across the globe. Its primary use is to stage a lifelike cycling experience indoors, utilising realistic and beneficial fitness measures.
The game – for lack of a more technical term – is headed Down Under by former Australian cyclist Wesley Sulzberger, who is the Area Manager for Zwift Australia New Zealand. Not so long ago Sulzberger was one of Australia's bigger cycling names, with appearances in Grand Tours, including the Tour de France which he raced in 2010.
The 33-year-old was previously an avid user of Zwift before becoming involved in an employment capacity. He describes the growth they have experienced this year in New Zealand and Australia, which has come at the height of the virus' treachery, as a "really rapid journey".
The journey is thanks largely to people being forced to tough out the indoors.
"April 2019 compared to April this year – there were five times the amount of users using the platform," he says.
"We've seen tremendous growth. The biggest thing is being the community utilisation of the product, being able to connect with each other. It's an interactive and fun way to keeping engaged with each other while doing activities."
The 'community' that Sulzberger talks of is arguably Zwift's most attractive feature for average, every day cyclists. Users can race against or alongside professional athletes, be it cyclists or other well-known figures online. The app was a popular choice for Richie and Gemma McCaw during New Zealand's nationwide lockdown in April.
"Tri [Triathlon] New Zealand has run a series… about a thousand athletes, and it included a lot of the Olympic hopeful athletes that planned to go across to Tokyo," Sulzberger adds.
"[We've] also had pro athletes like Hayden Roulston jumping in that series, an Olympic silver medalist. It wasn't locked off to anyone as well. There were a lot of these professional athletes with a mix of community – from your top-end pros down to your weekend warriors, your general riding enthusiasts."
As well as the Tokyo Olympic Games, which are now taking place in July 2021, this year's Tour de France had to be postponed by a month while both the Giro d'Italia and Vuelta a España were pushed out to start this month.
A host of men's and women's races were cancelled.
The growth numbers for Zwift, on the other hand, are encouraging – users have more than doubled since this time last year. The biggest spike came in daily users came in April, which was more than double the figure from 12 months prior.
The program launched in 2014, and has since had over 17,000 Kiwis sign up.
As well as that the company recently announced a $450 USD million investment led by global firm KKR, as well as a range of other partners. The injection will be used to accelerate the development of Zwift's software as well as bringing hardware to market, and thus improving the experience for users.
Sulzberger is excited to see where this will take them.
"The development of the software is going to be one of the key factors there, along with mirroring that with the design of Zwift hardware and development of the hardware piece as well. That's one part that's really going to close the loop. There are other models there that can definitely be implemented to get Zwift to the masses, and that's something our CEO Eric Min is really driving home to develop that part of the business," he says.
But as work continues to progress in returning the world to normal, with countries getting a better handle on how to deal with the virus and better withstand potential outbreaks, the tendency to get out on a bike will grow. But Sulzberger says the usage of their app dropping fulfils part of their goal.
"It's not about just riding on Zwift… Zwift isn't taking away from outdoor riding, it's enhancing it… so you can get that training in during the week, and then you can go out on the road and be a stronger cyclist for your weekend rides. That's where we're seeing a really good fit."
In saying that, Sulzberger is not anticipating a huge fall in traffic.
"There may be a few that tail off there, but I think the majority will seek benefit - and the community side of it is the real glue."