Running and cycling app Strava today announced a new update focused on expanding the social aspect of the app's toolset, launching first for 36 professional athletes and expanding to all users later this summer. Called "Athlete Posts," the new feature will let the group of athletes post personal stories, ask their fans questions, share gear tips and recommendations, detail their workout plans, and more.
The update is an expansion to Strava's current social feed and activity uploads, which let all users post pictures of their workout, details of where the run or bike ride was located, and enables comments and likes on posts. According to Strava, Athlete Posts will be a more nuanced addition to its social features that will include basic text and link posts without requiring a workout-related activity upload.
Strava said that this will lead to posts related to recipes, article sharing, stories about recent vacations, and will allow users to avoid other social networks in their hunt for sports-related subject matter.
No more digging through forum websites built in the ’90s to find your niche gear question. And you can leave all the political rants and cat GIFs behind on other social networks. Strava’s where you can be a sport nerd, hanging out with other sport nerds, and delightfully little else.
Strava mentioned that early access for the 36 included athletes will allow any user following them to become familiar with the feature ahead of its wide public debut. Some of the athletes who will begin using Athlete Posts today include Lauren Fleshman, Rich Roll, Susie Chan, Adrian Ballinger, and more. The full list can be found on Strava's website.
“Strava is a place where athletes come to connect with each other, share their experiences and learn from one another,” says Aaron Forth, Chief Product Officer at Strava. “And until now, those connections have been based entirely on athletic activities. Our opportunity is to help athletes have conversations beyond their daily activities, sharing everything from favorite gear, to injury recovery tips, to travel recommendations.
To open up those conversations, we are introducing the ability for members to post new types of content. Ultimately, when you want to engage with friends who share your passion for all things running, cycling, swimming, hiking, or any other sport, Strava is the place to do it.”
Athlete Posts will be available for all users when the feature launches wide later this summer, and it won't be part of the Strava Premium membership plan. Strava is available to download for free from the iOS App Store [Direct Link], and the update should begin appearing throughout the day. As the company pointed out in its blog post, users will only notice Athlete Posts if they follow one of the 36 participating athletes.
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Their native app for the Apple Watch is a real killer app!