How does Strava measure swimming?

How does Strava measure swimming?

In this guide, we will talk about how Strava measures swimming. Moreover, we will talk about how Strava calculates indoor and outdoor swims, an introduction to MySwimPro and how you can sync it with Strava and a few apps that can also become very helpful when talking about tracking swimming. 

How does Strava measure swimming?

If you love swimming you may wonder, how Strava measures swimming. Well, for outdoor swims, Strava records with the use of GPS data so a map will be displayed on the app. However, consider that a GPS-based moving time is used instead of lap time and the pace chart for outdoor swims is built with GPS points, Strava applies a bit of smoothing. 

For many Strava users, swimming is a bit part of their lives and recording their swim activities is a must. There are a few compatible devices that many athletes use to record their swim activities such as the Garmin Forerunner 920XT, 910XT and 310XT, Garmin Fenix 2 and Fenix 3, TomTom Multi-Sport, Polar V800, and a few others.

Moreover, Strava is regarded as one of the best apps for recording any type of sports activity and one of the most preferred among users. Needless to say, Strava is a free app and you can download it from the Play Store or the Apple Store but if you would like to use some of the premium features you will have to pay for a subscription. Let’s take a look at indoor and outdoor swims and how they are measured.

How does Strava measure swimming?

Indoor Swims

As indicated by Strava Support, indoor swims will not display a map, instead, a lapse view will be displayed. Moreover, most devices have an option to input pool length before you start an activity and you will have to hit the lap button to record your distance and time.

However, remember that it is important to input the pool length before you start your activity and there is no way to update the pool length later, once the activity is already on Strava.

Finally, distance is calculated by adding up the laps distance and moving time by adding up the timer time of any lap more than zero yards.

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Outdoor Swims

Unlike indoor swims, outdoor swims are recorded with GPS data so a map will be displayed on Strava. Here, a GPS-based moving time is used instead of lap time and the pace chart for outdoor swims is built with GPS points although Strava applies a bit of smoothing.

However, remember that if you are recording a swim activity outdoor, it is best to turn your GPS off and use laps. Moreover, to get the most accurate data, treat outdoor laps as indoor swims.

MySwimPro and Strava

MySwimPro is considered the number 1 swim and dryland app according to myswimpro.com. Additionally, you have the option to connect Strava to MySwimPro and to do this you just need to open the MySwimPro app on your Android or iPhone and tap on settings. Then, navigate to Devices & Integrations.

Finally, enable the option ‘Sync to Strava’ and authorize the MySwimpro app to access your Strava account and that’s it, you can choose a swim or dryland workout.

How does Strava measure swimming?

Analyzing and Sharing your Data

As indicated on myswimpro.com, “All of your swim and dryland workouts are recorded in the MySwimPro app, allowing you to analyze your performance and keep track of your progress. Instantly upload your swim to Strava and inspire your friends”. 

Moreover, Strava is meant to be a social network for athletes so it allows you to post a recap of every swim or dryland workout on your profile so you can share it with other users.When you have integrated MySwimPro with Strava, you can log all the activities and workouts to your Strava activity feed.

Other Apps for Swimming

It is not a secret that there are other apps for swimming you can use, especially for those users that have a smartwatch. For most of us, being able to track our progress is something that we look forward to, especially because it keeps us motivated. Here we will talk about Swim.com, TrainingPeaks and Tri Swim Coach. 

Swim.com

Swim.com is considered a very simple tool in order to track your training while allowing you to compare your stats with other peers. As indicated on superwatches.com, “The app automates the capture of information about your swimming performance meanwhile offering motivation. It’s great for people who like to go it alone or swim as part of a team”.

Finally, Swim.com is compatible with Apple, Garmin, Samsung and WearOS smartwatches.

TrainingPeaks

TrainingPeaks can be considered your best option if you are a beginner or if you are preparing yourself for a triathlon. With this app you are able to track your progress so you can improve your performance.

Moreover, the app offers you a step-by-step guidance to help you set swim zones and some general tips to help you get better. Also, there is a library of tried and tested plas you can pick from and the best part is that you have the ability to hire a qualified coach who can help you in your journey. 

Finally, this app is compatible with around 100 apps and devices (but it works best with Garmin devices). Your workouts will be automatically uploaded once completed so you can see and manage your data. TrainingPeaks can be downloaded for free but if you require some of the most advanced faetures you will have to pay. 

Tri Swim Coach

If youa re an advanced swimmer, this is probably one of the top choices. As indicated on superwatches.com, “Using My Tri Swim, which costs $2, you can have access to a full set of drills which are customised to the season and level that you pick”. This app can help you if you go from the basics of Olympic to half or full Ironman. 

Finally, you may probably get some advantage from the four seasonal options it has to offer such as off, base, build or peak. All designed to help you throughout the year. 

Why is this blog about How does Strava measure swimming important?

As we have discussed on how Strava measure swimming, we can conclude that for outdoor swims, Strava records with the use of GPS data so a map will be displayed on the app. 

However, consider that a GPS-based moving time is used instead of lap time and the pace chart for outdoor swims is built with GPS points, Strava applies a bit of smoothing. In contrast, indoor swims will not display a map, instead, a lapse view will be displayed. Moreover, most devices have an option to input pool length before you start an activity and you will have to hit the lap button to record your distance and time.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about How does Strava measure swimming

How do I manually add swimming to strava?

If you would like to manually add swimming to strava follow the instructions when adding an activity:

  • Log into your Strava account and click on ‘Upload’ at the top right corner of the page.
  • Next, click on ‘Manual’ listed on the left side of the screen and select your activity type. Enter the information required on the fields and click where it says ‘Create’. 

How does strava measure distance?

Strava measures distance using the data recorded by the GPS. Strava takes the distance data recorded in the file and parses it into a data stream to calculate total distance, average speed and max speed. However, distance does not contribute to your segments or segment times. 

How do you record a workout on Strava?

To record a workout on Strava, click on the plus sign icon in the lower right-hand corner to reveal the option to record and activity. By default, Strava will record the primary sport from your profile but you can change this by tapping the shoe or bike icon. To begin recording, tap the Start button which is located near the bottom of the screen.

What activities does strava track?

There are several activities that Strava will track for you and once the activity is uploaded or synced to the app, it can be edited to change the sport type ro any of the following options:

  • Ride.
  • Run.
  • Swim.
  • Walk.
  • Hike.
  • Alpine Ski.
  • Backcountry Ski.
  • Canoe.

What is a good swimming pace?

A good swimming pace will depend on your age and skills. In general, it is said that the average lap swimmers in a 100 m pool can comfortably complete a 100 m swim in 2 mins. A swimmer who has an easy interval time of two minutes would consider a 100 time of one minute 10 seconds as being very good. 

References 

Swim Activities on Strava 

Superwatches.com 

Myswimpro.com 

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Daniela Paez is a Clinical Psychologist with an MSc. In Clinical Neuropsychology from Bangor University. She has vast experience in working with children with disabilities, adolescents and their families, in extreme conditions of poverty and vulnerability. Additionally, she owns a private practice where she provides neuropsychological evaluation for children and adults, and treatment for mood disorders, anxiety, couple therapy, among other conditions.