Strava App review: The Strava app has become a part of the life of all cyclic sports lovers, and now many cannot imagine training and just physical activity without it. It’s not for nothing that the expression “if it’s not in Strava, then it didn’t exist” appeared.
Strava App review
The love of Strava users has been achieved through a combination of workout diary, GPS tracker, and social networking features. In Strava, an athlete can record their activity and accompany it with photos and then receive credits and comments from subscribers for it. Of course, many apps today have all of this feature set, but Strava’s developers were pioneers and have won over millions of users worldwide in over 10 years.
The Strava app is available in mobile and desktop versions. It is equally suitable for athletes, amateurs, and clubs.
Strava, especially the Premium account, acts as an informative workout diary, which will display all the key metrics: distance, pace, speed, climb and calories burned, heart rate (if you have a heart rate monitor), heart rate zones, power zones, intensity and load for a workout.
For lovers of an active lifestyle
The service will collect statistics on a run or race and tell you how it was through photos and descriptions. Many hobbyists will find Strava motivated to keep going as the app creates interactions between users.
The service provides administration for clubs, including global brands and local communities: creating new events, discussions, and news. In each community, a rating is automatically generated based on the results of the week, which contributes to additional motivation of the participants.
How does the Strava app work?
So you’ve signed up with Strava. Where to begin? When customizing your profile, add personal parameters such as height and weight so that the best walking app for weight loss can analyze your activities more accurately. Users also have the opportunity to add their own equipment to keep track of how many kilometers have already been “run” in those sneakers and how many in these. It is generally recommended to change your shoes every 500-800 km to prevent injury, and the app will inform you about this.
In order to record your workouts in the application, a working GPS is enough. The service will offer to select the type of activity (running, cycling, swimming, etc.), after which you can safely click on the “Record” button. During training, if you stop, the Auto Pause function is activated.
Strava automatically calculates heart rate zones for its users based on their age, but you can also customize them yourself in the web version. Additional knowledge about you will allow the application to display the difficulty ratio of the workout – the so-called “Relative Effort.”
During exercise, your heart rate is tracked and compared to your maximum heart rate. The relative effort will show how hard you practiced. So, the indicator will be high if the athlete has been practicing in his “red zone” for a long time. However, it should be noted that this function will only be available to users of the paid version. On each workout page, the athlete will see how his pace or speed, heart rate, cadence, and power have changed. You can vary all this data using the slider, which highlights the intervals of interest.
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Cycling training analysis
The paid version, also called Summit, also has a Beacon function for the delight of family members who are worried about the athlete. You can share your location data with family members, friends, a coach, and a doctor in real-time.
One of the interesting social components of the application is the Strava Flybys service, which allows you to see on the computer screen how the user completed the recorded route and who trained nearby. Often, participants use Flybys to analyze a race or other mass sporting event: the screen displays the position of all participants who have this activity in Strava, and you can understand when the drama of the race began to unfold or how and where you missed that or another athlete.
Strava’s GPS workout recording capabilities don’t end there. From your watch, the data of activities in the gym, in the pool, on the treadmill, bike station, on the climbing wall can be loaded into the program. Running on a treadmill or stationary bike workout will be included in your overall running/cycling stats.
Strava doesn’t have an activity planner, but it does have a calendar showing the number of hours by month and yearly statistics. Use the “Training” option in the mobile version, which will not let you “get lost” in the lessons. It should be noted that the service opens such data only to the account owner; therefore, if a coach leads your training process, he will not be able to see such detailed information.
The training calendar will show how much the athlete is performing in hours.
Returning to our athlete, we add that on the main screen of the application, both web and mobile versions, the volume of classes of the current month and week is tracked in kilometers and hours. Motivating you not to give up your chosen sport, the app will compare the current month of activities with the past. The screenshot below shows that the user of the application in February cycled for a total of 18 hours 53 minutes, and for the current month has 2 hours 38 minutes of training, temporarily showing a decrease in training volume relative to volume on the same date last month.
Despite the fact that the application does not have an activity planner, it does have a Tasks option that applies to running and cycling. For example, the Run Climbing Challenge invites all runners to climb 2,000 meters in a month. There are also missions aiming at athletes to run a half marathon this month or complete a 100km long run.
All participants who complete the task receive a virtual winner badge. During the competition, you can track your position globally – among all users who have joined the challenge – as well as with a sample: among subscriptions, by country, by the club, by weight, age.
To maintain the level of motivation of its users, the service invites them to compete with each other in the segments for the “Site Record” or for the title “King of the Hill” (TSG). The users themselves create the sites, and then, every time they pass or run over it, the best result of each participant is saved in the rating table. On the other hand, the user has the entire archive of his own results on a particular segment, which allows him to see his progress over the entire time of using the application.
Since Strava was conceived by the developers as a social tool, in the web version, when viewing a page of an athlete, if he does not hide his data with privacy settings, it will be possible to compare his performance with the results of the selected participant. Together with segments, this function socializes our activities and, to some extent, turns them into virtual competitions, but users need to know when to stop.
However, it is possible to file a complaint against participants whose records are clearly implausible. This is done on the training page that aroused suspicion. The most common ban is setting a record on a segment using transport.
Strava integration with other programs
Not all users write their Strava activity directly to their smartphone, but the service has a huge database of supported programs in this regard. Here are just a few of them: Garmin, Zwift, Suunto, Amazfit, Fitbit, MIO, Polar, Tacx, TomTom, Wahoo. This way, while exercising with your favorite watch, you can then view activity data from Strava tools. To do this, you just need to link your own watch program with Strava.
Devices supported by Strava. All you have to do is sync your watch program with Strava to duplicate your workouts in the last one automatically
Strava can also be linked to a myriad of apps. The entire list is at www.strava.com/apps.
Big sports on Strava
What makes Strava different from most similar fitness apps is the fact that endurance sports stars often publish their workouts and races on it. Athletes’ accounts will be marked with the signature “Professional Athlete.” And if in Russia the pros have not yet come to this service en masse, in the West, athletes have long been sharing their routes and training data with fans. This is how, for example, the page of the 4-time winner of the Tour de France cycling race, Chris Froome looks like.
Professionals’ profiles are collected at www.strava.com/pros.
It’s not just professional athletes who have settled on Strava. The service has become an additional platform for companies, racing teams, and stores. For this purpose, the “Clubs” option has been created in the application. Any user can create their own community, but professional ones, again as pro-athletes cases, have a special tick and the signature “Confirmed club.”
For runners in the computer version, in addition, in the “News” section, there is a section “Running competitions,” which contains the most “top” races. The profile of the upcoming event will indicate the number of users who signed up for the race, their goals. You can discuss the race with the participants, and in the “Weekly training” section, you can get information for preparation.
When the event ends, the results of the signers will be added to all of the above. Visually in the screenshot from the Tokyo Marathon page.
Strava is not perceived as a purely physical activity recording app. The most appropriate phrase for him would be “sports social network.” This service is sometimes also referred to as “sports Instagram.” By the way, do you know what the word “Strava” means? This is a Swedish verb, the English equivalent of which is “strive.”
So, do you need to start a Strava account? A workout diary, social network, activity analysis, athlete’s fitness tracking, tracker, and a mine of virtual rivalry – it’s all about Strava, and therefore the service will please both the strict athlete who is not in a hurry to mix training and communication and the Instagram star who wants to share with the world.
Strava is not suitable only for a coach who cannot assign tasks to their students directly in the app or explore advanced analytics of the training process. Takeaway: Strava is definitely not about remote coaching.