Huge spike in fitness app use as time spent on Strava triples during lockdown

Meanwhile Fitbit use has actually fallen sharply as people are moving around less

Lockdown has seen countless changes in this country, but one major change is the time people are spending on fitness apps likes Strava and MapMyRun.

Mobile network EE has released data usage figures which reveal that Strava use has tripled during the lockdown, compared with pre-March statistics.

This has been mirrored with another fitness app, MapMyRun, which has seen usage double in the last three months.

Conversely, Fitbit use has fallen across the UK as people are moving around less in their day-to-day life because of coronavirus.

CEO of BT’s consumer division, Marc Allera, said: “Lockdown has clearly driven huge changes in the way our mobile network is being used.

“Fitness apps are seeing big spikes in data usage as we exercise more outside and online supermarket orders spiked massively in the early stages and are now returning to a new ‘normal.”

Strava has seen both the number of users and data usage more than triple compared to the pre-lockdown figures, as countless new people have turned to outdoor exercise to stay healthy.

With gyms and leisure centres closed, many more people have tried cycling and running during this period of uncertainty.

But with more people working from home, Fitbit use has fallen sharply as most people follow government advice to stay at home.

This month, Strava announced a major overhaul as it tries to encourage more people to become paying members.

Free features like leaderboards and segment analysis are now only available to subscribers.

There has been a flip-side to the increase in people heading outdoors to exercise however, as Richmond Park has been closed to cyclists as park staff witnessed an increase in the number of riders using the green space.

Meanwhile, the UK government and councils across the country are trying to encourage more people to cycle for their commute.

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As the country looks to easing its way out of lockdown, there are concerns that cities and towns could become gridlocked as people avoid public transport when returning to work.

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Alex Ballinger

Alex Ballinger is editor of BikeBiz magazine, the leading publication for the UK cycle industry, and is the former digital news editor for After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter, then as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output, and now as the editor of BikeBiz. Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) Alex covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers.  Away from the desk, Alex can be found racing time trials, riding BMX and mountain bikes, or exploring off-road on his gravel bike. He’s also an avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.