While Strava and Endomondo allow users to track a large number of training activities, there are three activities that they are popular for: walking, running, and biking or biking. People have been flocking to Strava and Endomondo for years, looking for features, community, and a sense of belonging. Needless to say, the popularity of the app says it all.
While on the surface both apps look similar and even offer similar features, the devil seems to be in the details. There are some things that Strava is better at and some that Endomondo excels at. Depending on your goals, aspirations, and type and location of activity, you will find one more suitable than the other.
Let’s find out if you should go for Strava or Endomondo.
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Strava vs. Endomondo
I like an application that has been designed with ease of use in mind. Both Strava and Endomondo have a clean user interface with all the functions neatly packed into the menu. However, accessing that menu is different in both applications. Strava is still moving the sidebar menu, which is harder to reach, especially on a big-screen smartphone.
Endomondo has all the options in the bottom bar, which makes it much easier to tap the options and also switch between menu items. You can go from a workout to eating with one touch. For sidebar menus, you need to double-tap. It is not a deal breaker, but still, it could be improved.
Other than that, both fitness apps are professionally designed and everything works as it should. Nothing broke when I tried them.
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2. Logging activities
Registration is a simple matter in any of the applications. You will go to the activity screen where your location will be automatically detected on a map, you can select the activity from the drop down menu and get started.
Some common metrics that both Strava and Endomondo will measure are speed, calories burned, distance traveled, and time. These metrics will be used to further calculate average and maximum pace or speed and altitude figures. If you are using a smart wearable device, there are other metrics that can also be measured, such as average and maximum heartbeat or BPM.
So how do they differ?
Endomondo also offers mid- and max-beat details. That is not the same as average speed. Speed is most useful when cycling and pace is more appropriate when walking or running. This is why runners use an average pace that is calculated as time / distance, while speed is calculated as distance / time. Here are my personal stats on a night walk.
Once you have logged your activity you can add a photo or a selfie, the weather information will be added automatically and various charts will be created in both applications on the go. I like numbers better than graphs, but that’s me.
Endomondo relies on GPS to track the height of the terrain where you are running or cycling, which can be inaccurate. GPS is not very reliable for tracking altitudes. Any runner and cyclist will tell you how important that data is, as it makes it significantly difficult when it comes to altitudes.
Strava also uses GPS but has a built-in correction mode that will produce more accurate results. Corrections are made based on special maps that Strava has built over the years. If you are tracking or cycling in one of these areas, Strava already has all the altitude data, making it more accurate. They call it Elevation.
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3. Segments, training, challenges
Segments is where Strava takes the lead and makes for a really great running and exercise app for competitive athletes or those constantly looking to push their limits. Say, you went for a walk on a particular trail. Strava will record your time and other details. Now the next time you go down the same route, Strava will intelligently remind you of your latest stats and motivate you to do better.
That way, you will be able to know if you have improved or not. This is also done for cycling. Strava is currently the only app of its kind that offers this feature that works so well. A key reason why you will find so many professionals on the app. Learn more about creating segments here.
Endomondo has 4 different ways to start exercising. First is the Training Plan, where Endomondo will start slowly and automatically adjust your chosen plan based on your performance. A good way to start running. The second is interval training, where you can do predefined workouts or create your own. The third is Commitments where you will swear to run x miles in y days and then Endomondo will track you. The last one is Challenges (join or create one) where you will be part of a larger community facing the same goals and challenges.
Feeling the heat from Endomondo and other fitness tracker apps, Strava recently released training programs in beta. You can create your own programs, but that’s it for now. There are challenges that work in a similar way to Endomondo. Finally, there are clubs in which you are part of a community that works for common goals.
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4. Be social
Both Endomondo and Strava have a strong and active community. Strava made a name for itself in the cycling and cycling communities early on, so you’ll see a lot of them there. That is not to say that Endomondo is lagging behind. The benefit of Strava is that many professional athletes have chosen Strava and fans love to follow them.
Other than that, both apps will allow you to add Facebook friends and contacts. Once the syncing is complete, they can follow each other’s workouts, comment, and motivate each other.
Strava and Endomondo, both will allow you to see the routes taken by others in your community or groups. A great way to discover new clues. Endomondo goes one step further and allows you to record audio messages for friends, to help them stay motivated. Strava follows the Kudos system which works like Facebook likes. You can comment under each activity in both.
Strava vs. Endomondo
These are the key points to clarify. Endomond offers more statistics and graphs, but Strava offers specific statistics with segments that track past performance against current ones. If you are a cyclist, you are better off with Strava. Endomondo allows your spouse and family members to track you in real time. Helpful when encountering an accident, he / she can locate you and send help. Many professional athletes can be found on Strava.
Before you start, ask your friends which app they are using. Much will also depend on that. The free version of Endomondo has ads, the free version of Strava is ad-free.