Strava's Global Heatmap reveals where runners and cyclists travel the most

Take a look at the trail you're leaving behind
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Strava has announced a new feature that allows users to tap into heat maps of their activity and cities around the world.

Sounding a lot like a similar feature that Suunto offers on its Movescount platform, Strava Global Heatmap will allow users to gain an insight into 1 billion activities from over 10 million users. The total distance shown through the map, meanwhile, covers around 27 billion kilometres and 5% of all land on the planet.

Read this: Strava CEO on wearables and what comes next

Strava already has its Metro platform, which allows users to plan routes by accessing a similar map highlighting popular areas, although Heat Maps now also feeds into this by featuring data from the likes of cyclists, runners and swimmers. That means you're able to see just where congestion lies on your commute to work, for example, and also routes that are less travelled.

As the maps show, the most popular areas within the US are New York and Boston, while in the UK, Manchester and London rank out at the top. And as you might expect, parks and central landmarks within the latter are among the most lit areas.

"A global community can seem very abstract until you see its activities visually represented in your immediate location and across the world," said Strava CEO James Quarles. "It's not just runners and cyclists, either — skiers, hikers, kiteboarders and even mountaineers on Everest are all counted in more than a billion uploads from the Strava community."

All in all, the new heat map features activity from 31 different sports, with Strava Premium users able to access their own personal maps — something which we imagine would act as a push to explore more of your area.

And although this is a handy addition for paying users, it all feeds into a wider picture. Once an activity is uploaded, Strava Metro then aggregates this into a package and works with transportation departments and cities around the world to improve infrastructure for both pedestrians and cyclists.

So the next time you upload something to Strava, keep in mind that you're leaving a trail and potentially helping exercisers in the long-run.

Strava's Global Heatmap reveals where runners and cyclists travel the most

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Conor Allison


Conor moved to Wareable Media Group in 2017, initially covering all the latest developments in smartwatches, fitness trackers, and VR. He made a name for himself writing about trying out translation earbuds on a first date and cycling with a wearable airbag, as well as covering the industry’s latest releases.

Following a stint as Reviews Editor at Pocket-lint, Conor returned to Wareable Media Group in 2022 as Editor-at-Large. Conor has become a wearables expert, and helps people get more from their wearable tech, via Wareable's considerable how-to-based guides. 

He has also contributed to British GQ, Wired, Metro, The Independent, and The Mirror. 

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