If you use and enjoy Strava, it makes sense that your watch is compatible with this fitness app. Strava is an online platform typically used by cyclists and runners thanks to its reliable GPS functions and features and the app’s social edge: Strava enables athletes to connect with each other and share athletic stats. These features are especially handy for smartwatch wearers who like to track, see, and share this information on the go.
We’ve curated a list of the 10 best smartwatches for you and the Strava app. Together, Strava and your smartwatch will enable you to get a fuller idea of your health, fitness, and training efforts.
1. Apple Watch Series 6,7,8 and Ultra
The new Apple Watch Series 8 and Ultra work with Strava and in such a convenient way that most people are upgrading. It works as a standalone app but you can also connect them to each other through the Health App. Let’s also note that the Apple Watch SE/2 and Series 6 and 7 work just the same!
The Apple Watch Series 7 is also a much-improved version of it’s predecessor. The watch itself has several upgrades with one of them being the size of the screen. Its largest and best display paired with more health functions and 33% faster charging than other models, the watch is hard to beat. In fact, the screen is a whopping 50 percent bigger than the Series 3.
The new software has also added a keyboard that mimics the exact same as the IPhone. So now you can type away or you can swipe through the letters to type.
2. Polar V800
Despite being launched in 2014 this remains a go-to watch for hardcore athletes in 2022. The best part is that it’s Strava compatible along with some of the other Polar smartwatches. The Polar V800 has a number of distinct features worth getting into.
For starters, it’s a watch that can handle some bumps as it offers a multi-sport program with a rugged look. It also contains the important GPS feature that many smartwatch wearers look for. The fitness junkie is heaven because it offers 24.7 fitness tracking and even has a smart coaching mode so that you know how hard it is to go based on how your body is doing. With tons of sports offered, it truly is a great option.
This watch sometimes gets looked over because it’s not the most stealth-looking smartwatch on the market. But that’s part of the sell because it is one of the toughest smartwatches out there and is really able to withstand some bumps and bruises along the way.
3. Polar Vantage V2
While the Polar v800 is a great option the Polar Vantage V2 is a more recent release and still Strava compatible. You can go to your Polar Flow Setting and upload all of your info from there to Strava making it super easy and convenient. But the Polar Vantage V2 has some notable features to consider as a contender for a great smartwatch.
This watch was meant to add some sleekness to the former option. Not only that but the specs and details added to make it an incredibly insightful watch for athletes of all sports is what makes this a great option. Polar takes its heartbeat technology to the next level with light sensors to measure how your heart is doing with oxygen levels.
With GPS, Recovery rates, waterproof abilities, and a plethora of other features this is the ultimate athlete watch. But it comes at a steep price just under $500.
4. Garmin Forerunner 245
If you’re a regular SuperWatches reader, you know we recommend Garmin for highly-active people. The Garmin Forerunner 245 is dedicated to runners and offers advanced training features. The upgraded Forerunner 255 is also a good choice. (See review below)
This smartwatch offers GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo connections for ultimate accuracy on your Strava app.
What’s more, it offers music streaming from services like Spotify. Or, there’s the option to store music on the watch itself. The battery life is up to 7 days if you don’t use GPS or music. You’re limited to 6 hours with both of these features in use, though. So if you’re someone who goes on all-day adventures, keep this in mind. You may even want to consider a solar option from Garmin if you have the budget.
The Forerunner 245 is focused on performance. It’ll monitor your efforts and tell you if you need to slow your pace or speed it up. If you need help, you can tap into the Garmin Coach function for guides.
There are variants of the 245, depending on what you need, but the standard version starts at around $270.
5. Garmin Forerunner 255
This is the upgrade that the Forerunner 245 has been waiting for. It has a good battery life, reliable GPS tracking, and a stylish design. With two case sizes and optional music compatibility, Garmin’s mid-level running watch is more versatile than ever. Triathlon Mode broadens the Forerunner’s appeal beyond the typical running population, making it an easy recommendation for both Android and iOS users.
Garmin’s battery life has seen a significant bump, and NFC integration with Garmin Pay means that you can free up some space in your pocket while you run (or bike or swim). Although the watch’s weight and the five-button navigation may require some getting used to, Garmin aficionados will be familiar with both of these features from other devices. Whether you use Android or iOS, Garmin’s compatibility with both platforms is superb. The Connect app is simple to use, and it integrates with Strava so that you can share your workouts with your friends, or you can keep your data private.
Essentially, any Garmin with Garmin Connect is Strava compatible. If you link your Strava account to your Garmin Connect account, all of your Strava activity will appear in your Garmin Connect account. Connecting the accounts via Garmin Connect app or online is required for syncing to take place.
6. Samsung Galaxy Watch 4/5
Run or ride in total freedom from your smartphone while receiving your notifications and calls, and while streaming music.
As you’re here looking for Strava compatible smartwatches, the Samsung Galaxy Watch is a great choice. However, what you get from these is superior insight compared to other watches. For Strava you get support for Running and cycling apart from many other sports modes.
When it’s time to rest, you can utilize the meditation, sleep, breathe and stress functions for a holistic approach to your health and wellbeing.
As it’s a Samsung watch, you know you can rely on a decent smartwatch experience to boot.
At just under $260, this option offers it all: fitness and smart features bundled into a great-looking timepiece.
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The design is like nothing else on this list. It almost passes as a high-end dive watch. Though it looks bulky, it’s lighter even than its predecessors.
At just under $299, we think this is incredible value for money.
7. Garmin Vívoactive 4
The Vivoactive 4 offers more in the design department and features, but for a little more money.
This Garmin model will monitor your energy levels, sleep quality, hydration, heart rate, stress, respiration, and pulse OX. We did say Garmin watches are made for those seriously into health and fitness, after all!
You can stream music from popular services like Spotify, Deezer, and Amazon Music and listen via connected Bluetooth headphones.
It comes with over 20 indoor and outdoor sports modes, with the onboard GPS. This is what you’ll want to use with your Strava app to get an accurate picture of your session.
The smartwatch mode battery life gives you an extra day compared to the 245. However, you get the same 6 hours with GPS and music.
If you like to see your notifications as you ride or run, you can pair your smartphone and get your calls, texts, notifications, and calendar reminders.
We think Vivoactive offers a lot more for a little more.
You can pick it up for just under $290.
8. Withings Pulse HR
Here we have a budget-friendly option. In 2019, Withings hooked up with Strava to create integration with selected watches. The Pulse HR is one of them.
The drawback and subsequent reason for it being a cheaper option is that it doesn’t have onboard GPS. So, you need to have your smartphone close by to be fully Strava compatible. It’s the compromise you make for a sub $100 fitness tracker.
Despite that, it offers more sports modes than any of the others mentioned so far (over 30), continual heart rate monitoring, and heart rate zones (similar to that provided by Fitbit). With the sport modes, recognition is automatic, which is great if you’re doing different things throughout the day. It’s also water-resistant to 50m, so you can include swimming in that list, too.
When using the Connected GPS, you can get a great idea of distance, calories burned, pace, and elevation.
9. Ticwatch Pro 3
I think Ticwatches are underrated for what you get. They’re not cheap, being on par with the Garmin Vivoactive and Fitbit Sense, but you do get a gorgeous design with some stellar features.
One standout feature of the Ticwatch Pro 3 is the battery life. In Essential Mode, it’ll can last 45 days. In Smart Mode, you get three days.
As for fitness features, there are many sport modes to choose from, all supported by GPS. This helps make the TicWatch Pro 3 an excellent choice if you’re specifically looking for Strava compatible smartwatches. What’s more, there’s constant heart rate monitoring, sleep tracking, stress monitoring, and a new noise detection features (similar to the Apple Watch 6).
Inside is the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 4100 chipset, which is worth noting because Android deliberately held back from putting this in their 2020/2021 releases.
10. Fitbit Versa 3/4
Here we have a mid-to-high-end Fitbit. Use it for running, cycling, hiking and other sports. Best of all, enjoy it with freedom from your phone whilst still getting real-time data on your pace and distance. Either directly on the watch or through Strava, thanks to the onboard GPS.
The Fitbit Versa 3 will highlight your intensity levels and heart rate zones during your workout, shown as Active Minutes. The Versa 4 is the latest version in the Versa range from Fitbit.
Other fitness features include advanced heart rate monitoring, sleep scoring, SpO2 (with specific watch faces) and your blood oxygen levels during the night.
Not that you’ll likely be thinking about it during your ride or run, but the newer (2020 onward) Fitbits are both Alexa and Google Assistant compatible. Fitbit has started to expand beyond their traditional fitness trackers into offering smart features, too.
You can get this watch for around $230.
In fact, Fitbits generally offer a great integration with Strava.
As well as the Versa 3, you can now pair Fitbit and Strava devices that have inbuilt GPS with the new Charge 5 and the Sense smartwatches.
When it comes to tracking one’s running performance, Fitbit is a fantastic tool, but it falls short when it comes to runners. This fixes the issue and allows you to use a low-cost Fitbit like the Inspire HR for sleep tracking while switching to a different running gadget when you’re out for a run.
A two-way data exchange is possible if you link your accounts Fitbit and Strava are integrated, so any run or cycle you log on Strava will count toward your Fitbit totals, regardless of whether you used your Fitbit to track it.
It’s not a full transfer of calories and steps, but Strava counts toward your weekly goal of five workouts in the Fitbit app.
Here’s how to get Fitbit and Strava to work together:
Strava is compatible with the Fitbit Charge 5, Sense, and Versa 3 because they all feature built-in GPS. Fitbit’s real GPS running watch, the Ionic, has been taken down and retired from the company’s own website, but it’s still available on Amazon. In the meantime, you can still buy it from other stores.
You may, of course, continue to use Connected GPS (from your phone) on devices like the Inspire 2, Inspire HR, Luxe, and Versa 2 to track your runs, and that data will be transferred to Strava as well.
To date, there are around 58 million Strava users worldwide, and the company claims an additional one million per month are signing up for the service. You can rest assured that the app is one of the best if you’re serious about running and cycling. So you need a smartwatch that will give you the best compatibility so you can get the best data from your sessions.
We encourage you to explore the brands we’ve mentioned here in more detail!
If you’re also a MyFitnessPal user, we’ve compiled a list of compatible smartwatches in this article here. Check it out to determine which is the best if you intend to use both apps in your fitness journey.
Last Updated on December 9, 2022
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