Data dump: 2015 Strava Insights reveal cycling landscape across United States

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Strava, the social network for athletes, has published its annual End of Year Insights for 2015.

Comprising of millions of individual runs and rides, the data offers unique insight into the habits and behavior of cyclists and runners in the United States.

The data reveals that in 2015, 5.3 activities were uploaded and shared on the social network every second. This data allows documentation and analysis of Strava’s growth in the world of cycling and running in the United States, while also providing direct comparison with the Strava community on a global scale.

Across Strava’s global platform, cyclists shared a total of 115,788,472 rides in 2015, accruing a total of 2,591,134,087 miles (4,170,026,096 kilometers).

Strava’s cyclists together accumulated 133 billion vertical feet, or over 40 billion meters, in elevation gain in 2015. Globally, Sunday, June 7 was the most popular day for cycling.

Strava cyclists in the U.S. logged 26,320,103 individual rides throughout the year, logging 539,112,239 miles (867,617,047 kilometers) along the way.

Saturday, July 11 proved to be the most popular day for a ride among U.S. cyclists; it also happened to coincide with the second weekend of the Tour de France.

From the hills of Vermont to the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, riders in the U.S. climbed 25.6 billion vertical feet, or 7.8 billion meters, in 2015 — 19 percent of the total elevation gain recorded on Strava globally.

For average distance, U.S. men recorded 23 miles (37km) for each ride, while women averaged 20 miles (32km).

Average ride times also differed, as men’s 1 hour, 54 minutes average ride put them in the saddle a bit longer than women, who averaged 1 hour, 38 minutes in comparison. Women recorded an average speed of 12.7 mph (20.4 kph) for an individual ride, with men registering 14.6 mph (23.5 kph).

Louisiana emerged as the fastest state, with an average speed of 15.2 mph (24.5 kph); Florida topped the rankings for longest average ride at 24.2 miles (39km). Vermont residents topped Colorado and California as the most regular climbers, averaging 1,460 vertical feet, or 445 meters, gained per ride.

Strava also revealed that California was the most active state in the U.S., with 7,172,721 rides logged, a considerable margin of difference over its nearest rival, Colorado residents, who totaled 1,465,414 rides. (California also has an estimated 39 million residents, roughly seven times that of Colorado’s 5.5 million.)

Sausalito, California, was home to the most popular segment in the U.S. in 2015, with 15,327 attempts on the “7-11 Bump” segment, near the Golden Gate Bridge.

For many of Strava’s U.S. members, commuting is a large part of their daily routine, with an average of 95,878 rides recorded as commutes to and from work every week. A pacey average of 15.0 mph (24.1 kph) ensured riders made it in on time, tackling an average 10.5 miles, or 16.9km, door-to-door.

“This latest release of Strava’s data demonstrates once again the great depth of insight which is available when collating the activities of the world’s cyclists and runners,” said Andrew Vontz, Strava brand manager. “The Strava story offers us an unprecedented opportunity to analyze and interpret a broad spectrum of data, helping to understand behavior and habits of athletes in the United States; as well as providing real-world feedback on how people utilize their local roads for both exercising and commuting.”

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