Strava is the fitness recording service which allows you to track your training and routes using a mobile app or GPS device, and upload onto your cloud based profile.
Parkrun is kind of a social movement of organised 5k runs which occur every Saturday morning in parks around the world. It started in 2004, with just 13 runners who decided to meet every week for a timed 5k run around Bushy Park in London. From there it has exploded into an international phenomenon, with official timing and recording, and remains entirely free.
Why Connect Parkrun To Strava?So, you’re a Parkrun attendee and also a Strava user. You get your Parkrun time from the website, and you also record your race on Strava and label it as ‘Parkrun’ (or whatever) which allows you to keep track of your Parkrun time with the rest of your training.
So, why would you connect the two profiles? Are there any benefits or is this just a marketing gimmick?
The only benefit which you will currently see is that you will have a Strava badge against your profile name and race results on the Parkrun website. Clicking on this badge will take other users to your Strava profile and allow them to connect with you, offer encouragement and compare segment times.
Improving The Relationship...Connecting your profiles presents a good way of getting others to follow your Strava page (if that’s what you want), but how else could this relationship be improved?
Well, you may have noticed that your time logged by Strava is rarely the same as the time logged by Parkrun. This is due to a number of reasons;
- Not starting the timer promptly.
- Forgetting to stop the timer as your hit the finish line.
- Starting further back from the start line.
- Slight inaccuracies with the GPS tracking.
Even if there is an actual Parkrun segment for your park (which there is almost certainly going to be, maybe even several) it is not as accurate as a stopwatch due to the slight GPS variations. Still, we are talking seconds here, which during training is fine, but in a race it’s what the clock says rather than what Strava tells you which counts.
How Parkrun appears in Strava
That’s just one of the things I would like to see introduced, I’m sure there are many others can think of in addition to making your Strava page more visible...
How To Connect Your ProfilesTo connect your profiles, do the following;
- Log into your Parkrun profile: The easiest way to do this is by following the ‘manage my profile’ link which you will find in your regular emails from Parkrun.
- Select ‘Link To Your Strava Profile’: You will find this in you ‘My Links’ section of your parkrun profile page. Scroll to the bottom and find the link called ‘Connect with Strava’.
- Authorise the profile link: A Strava page will appear requesting your permission to allow Parkrun access to your Strava information. You may need to log into Strava at this point. Once the option appears, approve the connection.
- Your profiles are now connected: You will be redirected back to your Parkrun profile and you should now see a Strava logo appear in your Parkrun profile page. That’s it, your profile are now linked!
This now provides a Strava badge against your Parkrun profile in all result pages. Clicking on this badge will take other users to your Strava profile and allow them to connect with you.
Parkrun profile once connected to Strava
The Future...As Strava keep looking for ways to innovate and introduce new features, I’m sure we will see some further uses of the relationship between the two services. Maybe even some Strava Challenges involving Parkrun with some of the new Parkrun merchandise as prizes?
Whatever happens, this seems like a good step in the right direction from a great training service to help promote a great running movement. It’s a win win outcome for the two. I just hope that they build on this relationship...