GARWIN: the Garmin Badges Calendar and Database

badgesGARWIN: A Calendar and Database for all Garmin Badges

More: www.garvv.in

For those of you who have an infeasibly large collection of event medals and a badgetastic horde of Garmin Challenge Badges. This is one for you.

Garwin seems to be the place where everything badge-related is explained, listed and sorted. It has every Garmin badge listed and tagged so you can find ones that you haven’t bagged yet and target ones that boost your Garmin points score.

Some Background

Gamification is a form of motivation that keeps lots of people exercising. So it’s definitely a good thing. While Garwin is not a virtual exercise experience like Zwift, it still is a virtual way to compete with connections and friends.

Garmin offers a great rewards system for being consistent in your activities, as well as for participating in some of the sports events they either sponsor or associate with around the world.

In short: you exercise and get Garmin Badges as a reward for your effort.

Each badge has either 1, 2, 4 or 8 points assigned to it, and collecting the points results in getting Garmin Levels, from 1 to 10. A word of warning though, you need over 10,000 points to get to level 10 and to get to that level is extremely difficult. You definitely need commitment and, as the challenges get ticked off, you need to find ways to undertake new challenges from a diminishing pool of alternatives. That’s where Garwin comes in.

 

Backstory

Garmin is a hardware-first company, that is primarily interested in selling you watches, bike computers and other bits of tech wizardry. The software and user experience, whilst important, is often criticised as being full of shortcomings and one of the neglected parts of it is the transparency of their gamification system, Garmin Badges.

Garmin Connect has extremely limited filtering, no sorting and no search options at all. All it has is a listing of all Earned and Available Garmin badges in no particular order, with all the historically available badges squirrelled away in the depths of the app never to be seen again.

Another thing that’s neither well implemented by the Garmin team, nor well-received by the Garmin community is the fact that there are Garmin badges available in specific countries only. While it makes sense to have geo-located event badges for Mexico City’s Telcel Marathon or Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc, the same principle does NOT work well for global events such as Environment Day or International Workers’ Day, whose reward badges can only be earned in locations selected by Garmin.

The confusing part is that badge eligibility does not depend on your actual GPS location, only on the settings of your Garmin account. Garmin Badges fans have figured it out long ago and they simply update their location on the day of an event to get the national holiday badges. (Yes, I guess that’s cheating too!)

How does Garwin work?

@WiktorP created Garwin, the Garmin Badges Calendar and Database: it’s a website that lets Garmin users browse all of the badges ever made and discover their next challenges. The clever use of Garmin’s blue colour and the garVV.in domain name seems to have escaped the beady eyes of Garmin’s trademark lawyers…at least for now.

Garwin’s Garmin Badges Database is highly interactive and lets you discover new challenges from the 1,000 or so Garmin badges using multiple user-friendly filters, such as activity type, repeatability, duration, event type and many more:

 

The Garmin Badges Calendar is useful as many badges can only be earned on certain days. Thus you can check badges by their activity type in the given period (quarter and month), event type and duration.

You can then add the dates for any badges into your personal calendar like iCalendar: Apple Calendar, Google Calendar, and MS Outlook Calendar. Here’s an example of a next-up location-based holiday event for the Garmin Badge: 2023 Mid-Autumn Festival on 29th September:

 

 

Garwin fetches Available badges daily from multiple accounts in every country. New badges are identified by comparing them to the existing badge database and then publishing the new badge info on social media and the master calendar.

An Example

Here’s an example where Garwin shows you how you can bag an additional 8 points by going the extra mile (well, the extra 200m).

Garmin Badges FAQ

Q: What is the point of Garmin badges?
A: Garmin badges are a motivational tool to get us to exercise more and from Garmin’s perspective it gets us to use its devices more and increase the likelihood that we stay in its ecosystem for the long term.
Q: How do I see my Garmin badges?
A: In the Connect app on your smartphone, tap on your profile picture and choose ALL BADGES.
Q: What is the hardest Garmin badge to get?
A: The hardest badge for anyone to get would be one that requires a daily commitment to a reasonably hard goal such as the 60-Day Goal-Getter where you have to hit your step goal in 60 consecutive days. The difficulty is remembering to make sure you do it each day! For single, difficult activities a cyclist might aim for the 100-Mile Ride badge or a runner might aim for the 100K Ultra Badge or you might try the Virtual Climb – Angels Landing
Q: How many levels are there in Garmin badges?
A: There are 10 levels and you progress from one level to the next by earning points. Whenever you get a badge you get a certain number of points at the same time.
Q: What can I do with Garmin badges and points?
A: Garmin badges are markers of achievement, simply enjoy the fact that you have achieved something and share your achievement with friends who have similar goals.

Q: How many Garmin Badges does the5krunner have?

A: I just checked (for the first time) and I am on level 4 with 277 points, I think I have 50 badges. Is that good? (I suspect not)

What’s next?

Garwin will very soon add a map-based way to find badges/challenges near you.

In the longer term, the plan is to link your Garmin Connect Account to a GarWIN account, and then the badges you’ve already earned can be removed from the list of those you see in Garwin.

The special features will be made available for repeatable badges. For these, your progress will be shown on the dashboard

Take Out

I only had a vague idea that Garmin Badges were popular. They turned out to be more popular than I imagined. However, I was quite surprised by the somewhat limited consideration that Garmin has given to them in the Connect app. Thus GARWIN is a great way for all Garmin badge-lovers to boost their points-scoring prowess and level up in true gaming style.

 

 

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8 thoughts on “GARWIN: the Garmin Badges Calendar and Database

  1. Welcome to the fun of chasing Garmin badges. The correct URL for the more intuitive and well-established site that I think inspired garww.in is garminbadges.com. Do check it out. I am just a happy user, no affiliation with the talented Swedish programmer who runs garminbadges.com in his spare time. Some key benefits: no account sign-up, a minimalist Chrome extension updates badge and challenge tracking with Garmin Connect already open in another tab, so Garmin Connect password need not be shared. The developer is also very helpful on Garmin-related forums.

  2. Looks useful. I came here trying to figure out how someone I found on Garmin Connect has over 90,000 points, while I have earned 269 over 4 years! Still baffled.

  3. Is Garwin still operating? Every time I try to log in, it comes up “This site can’t be reached”.

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