Strava has launched a new “streaks” feature that aims to make people stay active.
The new tool encourages people to commit to challenges that will require them to do a range of different activities through the week.
Strava – a social network for physical activities – says that doing a variety of different things regularly has been proven to be an effective way of keeping people active.
And it said that doing so would be a healthy way of staying off their phones.
The first of the challenges is known as the “Escape Plan” and will encourage people to keep moving through the summer. Anyone joining up will be encouraged to be active at least five times a week, over the four weeks that the challenge runs.
“Staying motivated is the largest and oldest barrier in health and wellness. People are busier than ever and screen time is eclipsing moving time. The Escape Plan Challenge is designed to inspire people to put their phones down, declare a simple goal and create better habits,” said James Quarles, Strava’s chief executive.
Though Strava is itself a social network, it says that people who use it tend to actually go on their phones less. It claims that every one minute spent on Strava brings 50 more minutes of staying active.
The company said that the idea of the challenge feature had arisen from research that found that users who tended to do more than one sport would stay active for longer. If someone does yoga as well as running, for instance, they are twice as likely to stay active over the year than someone who only runs – and the advantages grow as the number of sports does.
Similarly, it has also offered a feature that allows users to commit to a certain goal over the course of the year, such as a certain amount of running miles. Strava says that 94 per cent of people who use that feature stay active nine months later.
But the new streaks tool allows people to set themselves challenges over the course of the week, too. Rather than rewarding a given distance or time spent working out, it is intended to encourage people to keep working out, a number of days through the week.
It also allows people to take part in the challenges using whichever of the 32 supported types of sport they want to participate in. Until now, those challenges have been geared around a particular sport – like cycling or running – but the new update allows them to be done by people in all sports, as well as mixing them up.
It says that a host of research taken from data generated across the world shows that such regular commitment tends to keep people using the app and staying active much more.
It also found that users who do a number of activities through the week are more likely to stay with them. If someone uploads five times per week, they will generally stay active for double the weeks as someone who only uploads a couple of times.
Strava has long offered challenges, which reward users for signing up and then taking part in a given exercise. Users might be challenged to run a half marathon, for instance, or to climb a certain number of meters on their bike over the course of the month.
first published https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/news/strava-update-challenge-streaks-app-download-new-features-a9070051.html & https://www.strava.com/challenges/the-escape-plan