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Stryd Accuracy vs Stroller
A reader on this site, @AndersB, has agreed to share some of his Stryd Accuracy testing results which I found interesting as he was comparing them to a wheel sensor on a (kiddie) stroller. He also performed some tests comparing to the GPS tracks from V800, 310XT and Apple Watch (gen 6).
About his findings, he said this
I did not expect Stryd to be this good, judging from what I read online.
I got it for more stable pace, but was blown away by its accuracy.
the Stryd (relative) elevation is also spot on. I’ve compared Stryd, Edge520+ and V800 for a few runs, and they have all been in perfect agreement.
The Stryd…has been extremely accurate for me, with a spot-on pace.
@AndersB used a Wahoo RPM sensor on a Thule Cross Stroller which he states to be ‘carefully calibrated’ and compared results with an uncalibrated Stryd Wind pod, sometimes also with other devices.
- The Wahoo RPM wheel speed sensor has been carefully calibrated to a specific tire pressure and verified on a 400m track.
- The wheel speed sensor is mounted on one of the rear wheels. The front wheel is prone to lifting when turning and lifting slightly when bouncing
- The wheel speed is recorded to a Garmin Edge 520+
- Apple Watch 6, Polar V800 and Garmin 310XT were also used from time to time on the non-holding hand OR mounted to the stroller handle with the GPS receiver pointing at the sky
- Stryd was attached to either Nike Zoom Winflo or Asics Gel-Contend
- Paces varied between 10:00/km and 4:00/km
Let’s start off with the distance data. Here the variation to the calibrated wheel stroller is shown against each device on test. Clearly, Stryd and the V800 are the best.
The first chart is the most interesting to me. Whilst the V800 and Stryd arrive at the same distance, the V800 gets there by cancelling out of over-recording and under-recording distance.
Now, looking at speed over one run
and speed over another run
These relatively small variations in pace won’t matter to everyone. But will matter to some.
A Polar Study
A Polar-supported study published in 2020 found Polar V800 to be the most accurate on test.
This was the first test I’d seen comparing Stryd to a stroller and I would be interested to see the tests repeated if @AndersB also calibrated the Stryd on his local running track.
Some strollers have smaller wheels and these might be more prone to several kinds of inaccuracy but the model used seems to give results that are probably indicative of reality.
People often forget the phenomenon of under-measuring and over-measuring during a run. In other GPS-only tests, I have done over 10 miles with pretty much every GPS watch ever, almost all the watches record overall distance to be accurate to +/1% and that is over a route with occasionally demanding reception conditions. Yet many of the watches are often 10m off course for extended periods.
I guess, none of this really matters if you only ever want to log total mileage …if you want to run 10 miles or 10.1 miles then what is the material difference? A: None. But the accuracy of every individual metre that you run IS critical if you want a chance of getting an accurate instant pace. Thus, if you want to push yourself to the limit to getting that 20:00/5K time but your watch varies between 3:45/km and 4:15/km then you are going to find the tech useless for instant pace…although your lap pace will be OK once you are a minute or so into each kilometre. But then, do you speed up or slow down when the lap pace shows 4:05/km? (Answer: You don’t know, think about it)
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