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November 17, 2017

Cycling Apps

By Simon Bone, Founder, BikeUp

Remember the halcyon days, when Strava was just a word we’d never heard of? (does anyone actually know what it means?)

And unless you’re one of those ‘I don’t use Strava, I’m a real cyclist’ old school purist types (we all know at least one of them, right?), or you’ve turned your back on modern technology, you’ve probably been using the aforementioned cycling app (and some others like Zwift or TrainerRoad).

And if you’ve no idea what I’m talking about, then you really need to spend less time working and more time surfing the internet. Stop being so productive!

Rather than try to cover the well-trodden ground of the well-known apps, we thought we’d let you know about some of the cycling apps you may not have come across. So here are a few, in no particular order.

Sleepbot

There has been a lot written about the importance and benefits of sleep when it comes to fitness and recovery. Getting a good night’s sleep is of particular importance when you are training hard, as it aids your body’s recovery process. Sleepbot is an app which includes a suite of tools designed to help you sleep better. You can use it to set alarms and create auto-settings to aid your sleep, as well as tracking your sleep stats.

Screenshot of the sleepbot app

Sleepbot app

Available for: iOS; Android
Price: Free
Website:  https://mysleepbot.com

Elite HRV

The app measures Heart Rate Variability (HRV). The company claim HRV is the best non-invasive measure of the Automatic Nervous System, which they argue is the main controller of health and performance functions. The app offers numerous features, including customizable measurements, live biofeedback and progress measurement amongst others.

Elite HRV app

Available for: iOS; Android
Price: Free (with some paid options)
Website: https://elitehrv.com

Relive

Relive uses the activity data from your Garmin or similar GPS tracking device, and uses it to create a 3D animated video of your ride. Unlike most of the other tracking apps out there which just allow you to store data, the Relive app creates a unique and engaging record of your ride. Relive also syncs with other cycling apps such as Garmin, Strava, endomondo and Polar.

Screenshot of the Relive app

Relive app

Available for: iOS; Android
Price: Free
Website: https://www.relive.cc

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Bike Gear Calculator

This one is a bit more niche, but definitely worth trying it if you are particularly focused on improving your performance on the bike for a sportive or a race. You can enter information such as cadence, tire size, crank length and more. The app allows you to compare gear ratios on your bike and optimise the setup in order to get achieve the best results based for you personally.

Picture of a mobile phone with Bike Gear Calculator app

Bike Gear Calculator app

Available for: iOS; Android
Price: Free, with a premium paid option
Website: http://www.bikegearcalculator.com

Fill That Hole

And now for something completely different. This app kinda does what it says on the tin, although it stops short of physically filling the hole. The app was created by the national cyclists charity UK Cycling, and aims to solve the age-old cycling problem of potholes in the road. The app allows you to notify the relevant local authority of the location of the pothole, who will then (hopefully) arrange to have it repaired. It’s a really simple concept, and a really great idea!

Screenshot of Fill That Hole app

Fill That Hole app

Available for: iOS; Android
Price: Free
Website: https://www.fillthathole.org.uk

ViewRanger

Thousands of downloadable route guides, free worldwide maps and GPS navigation features. The app can be used for various types of cycling, as well as running, walking and hiking. It also boasts the very cool ‘Skyline’ feature which allows you to use your device to scan the area and identify landscape features (and provides real-time directions).

Images of ViewRanger on various devices

ViewRanger app on various devices

Available for: iOS; Android; Apple Watch; Kindle Fire
Price: Free (plus in-app purchases)
Website: http://www.viewranger.com

Bike Computer

Bike Computer allows you to use your smartphone as a GPS tracking device. It is compatible with Strava, and offers a number of great features such as ‘Keep Me Safe’, which monitors your progress and notifies your emergency contacts of your location in the event of an accident.

Bike Computer app screenshot

Bike Computer app

Available for: iOS; Android; Apple Watch; Kindle Fire
Price: Free, premium version also available
Website: https://bikecomputer.co/ 

Bean Hunter

If there is one thing cyclists love, it’s a good cup of coffee. Group rides and club runs often feature a cafe stop for everyone to have a refreshment and enjoy the social side of the sport, and Bean Hunter helps you find locate the nearest and best coffee shops. Great if you are out exploring a new route or unknown part of the country.

Screenshot of Bean Hunter app

Bean Hunter app

Available for: iOS; Android; website
Price: Free
Website:  https://www.beanhunter.com/

BikeUp

Well, we couldn’t write an article on cycling tech without mentioning our own app could we?! BikeUp allows cyclists to book a bike service with a mobile bike mechanic, at the time and place of their choosing. We match customers with trusted professional mechanics in Glasgow and the surrounding areas, and we are planning to expand our service to other cities in the UK. Our app provides fixed price quotes, fast booking and secure payment, making us the simplest and most convenient way to book a bike service mechanic.

Computer with BikeUp website displayed

BikeUp website

Available for: Website; apps coming soon
Price: Fixed price services (can be viewed on the website)
Website:  https://www.bikeup.co.uk

Looking for new places to train? Check out our free eBook: ’10 of the Best Scottish Hill Climbs’.

 

Have you come across any other cool apps that you think people might like? Let us know in the comments.

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