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The site, created by a group of avid cyclists, was initially set up as a cycling club to compare rides and create small competitions amongst friends. Miles apart, the site brought back the fun in riding for the group who were short on free time and created a sense of team despite being located all over the country.
In 2010, Strava’s site owners recognized its popularity and extended their network. They also added supplementary features to the site enabling users to upload their stats to share, compare and compete with other Strava cyclists.
With the release of the free iPhone app, cyclists can join the Strava community to track their performance, record up to five rides, compete with others, and check leader boards. The ability to track their performance through the app is a major plus. Previously, cyclists had to record data on their own via GPS and upload it to the site for tracking.
The app also syncs wirelessly with users Strava.com accounts, eliminating double data entry. Additional performance data storage is available with $6.00 a month subscription.
There are a myriad of cycling apps on the scene for both casual bikes and serious athletes. Pedal Brain’s app takes an integrated approach, being an iPod and iPhone ANT+ accessory with a complete training log and coaching platform. While Cychosis, a cycling journal app, records routes and charts training and progress. While both successfully cater to cyclists, Strava’s new app remains the only application enabling riders to compare results and data with others in the Strava community.