How Accurate Is Strava Cycling? What Experts Have Suggested

How Accurate Is Strava Cycling_ What Experts Have Suggested

If you are new to exercise apps and want to know how accurate is Strava cycling, take a look at our in-depth inspection for some important and useful details.



Strava is one of the most well-known exercise apps for fitness enthusiasts. Cyclists can use the app’s measurements, but how accurate is Strava cycling

In terms of precision, the activity tracking app utilizes many criteria to calculate your result. To know what they are, we have conducted many tests. You can find all the necessary information below.

How Accurate Is Strava Cycling_ These Facts Are Sure To Surprise You

How Accurate Is Strava Cycling_ These Facts Are Sure To Surprise You

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How Accurate Is Strava Cycling?

It Depends On The Situation

How accurate is strava cycling? Like your lawyer often tells you, it depends.

For expert racers or mountain bikers, the app may struggle to collect fast average speed data, creating a relatively big number gap at the end of the session. 

In addition, due to the inaccuracies in short distances, you cannot record tracks that are roughly 300 meters long with cycling settings. 

So it is important to know how many miles you can cycle per week to avoid messing with the average statistics.

If you manage to adjust the settings, it can be an accurate tool to check your personal progress. It is quite easy to customize and create your own measurements.

The standard cycling settings are quite accurate if you are a slower rider or just want to cruise around the city. The map is regularly updated as well, making sure you don't get lost along the way.

So overall, does Strava track cycling? It can track specific movements of cyclists, but you do not expect the results to be 100% precise. 

The calculation is only as precise as the GPS device it uses to collect statistics. If that's your mobile phone, the quality may be affected by where you carry the accurate device. 

Your clothing might obstruct the transmission from satellites, making the numbers less reliable.

Things That Affect Accuracy


Nearby obstructions such as dense trees and uneven terrain can partially obstruct signal strength. Frequent spikes and delays are likely to occur even for top-tier apps.

Remember to check if the location setting in the app is enabled. It will attempt to create estimations and reduce the accuracy. Allowing the app to run GPS background to obtain extra distance updates.

Dense forests can block GPS signals.

Dense forests can block GPS signals.

The Hardware

Running Strava cycling apps on a high-end smartphone will provide more precise measurements than cheap ones. 

All gadgets that can submit data to the software, including smartwatches, cycling monitors, and even other applications, fall into this category.

To make full use of the app, we highly recommend using a wearable such as a smartwatch. The software is designed to work best on these devices and is easier to track.

About The Watts

If you are new to this app, it can measure your cycling wattage. This number acts as a measure to tell how much work you put into bike rides.

Unfortunately, Strava's virtual watts aren't precise enough due to the inconsistency of each session. The algorithm uses your average results and rounds the numbers. So you can only get an overall estimate.

On the other hand, the phone apps can record the changes in your average speed, providing you with a sense of improvement. There may be some changes in the data owing to the wind and other factors, but it will provide a far better estimate of progress.

This extra feature of the app is very handy, but is Strava Cycling Watts accurate? The numbers can give you some useful information on your progress. For fitness lovers, the wattage calculator is good for daily use.

Frequently Asked Questions 

How Does Strava Calculate Cycling? 

It calculates approximate calories burnt based on your mass, the weight of your bicycle, the activity distance traveled, and miles per hour.

Other than personal stats, Strava will calculate calories burnt based on your specific measurements and the length of your run. 

The final figure is generally fairly precise because it is generated using a sophisticated algorithm. Users beware that there are still variables that distort your personal result.

One example is overestimating your real calories burnt on group bike rides. A slower rider tends to drift leisurely in these activities, spending less effort. 


Group rides are fun as long as you try your best!

Group rides are fun as long as you try your best!

Since the app collects the entire group’s data, you can barely know how well you did in the mix.

A tip we have is to ensure that your body weight and bike model are both registered correctly in the software. 

You can further improve Strava's cycling measurement by adding the weight of your equipment to your actual body weight (shoes and helmet, for example). 

How Accurate Are Strava Distances?

While the general monitoring system isn't the best in the world when it comes to reliability, Strava Cycling excels at measuring long distances.

The corporation spends a lot of time and effort fine-tuning the formula. In practice, I'd expect a little 1-2 percent difference in total length.

Should you notice an issue with the length reported by your gadget, you can use the Strava post-upload technique to override the actual distance recorded by an accurate device.

Unstable GPS data, such as Bluetooth points that are disrupting your results, can be removed, improving the quality of the data. This action is reversible, so you can give as much testing as you like.

How Do You Cheat On Strava Cycling? 

It is fine to skip a workout day to enjoy yourself. Professional athletes, however, have to report their practice routine through an in-app interface. To loosen up this burden, we have found a way you can “enhance” your results.

While you can adjust the numbers, for them to become real, you need to utilize Digital EPO. It is a web page that lets you ‘improve' your cycling statistics before sharing them with friends, teams, and other people. 

The process is quite simple. After you have recorded your entire ride on Strava, go to the settings and export the data as a TCX file.

Then simply submit it to the EPO homepage and specify how many adjustments you would like to make to your session. You can increase average speed, reduce your heart rate, or raise the number of laps you complete.

Last but not least, reupload the modified file back into Strava. The results you have always dreamed of will be on the app for a show!

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And that was our thoughts on how accurate is Strava cycling. The numbers at first can be unreliable. But they can be improved with some minor tweaks.

Spend some time getting used to the app, and take note of the variables like location and hardware. By doing so, this cycling app can become as accurate as recording the training manually!

Thank you for reading, and we are really excited to see your cycling results in the comment section!

Ridge Davis

Ridgid Fitness represents the synthesis of Ridge Davis's career experiences in fitness and sports.

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