Designate between a "Group" and a "Solo" ride on Strava

This would allow Strava cyclists to tag a ride as a group ride or a solo ride, and also be able to sort segment leaderboards by those filters.

 

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  • I can't believe this thread is still alive and kicking!  If it is your goal to climb the ladder on a particular segment, why not just focus on getting faster and jumping up the people ahead of you regardless of how THEY rode it.  Maybe we should have a button to indicate TAILWIND, HEADWIND or maybe even a clicker to show how many cars past you and gave you micro drafts as you battled a headwind.  I think strava is a blast and have really enjoyed moving up the ranks in my little corner of the world but I do think that getting too wrapped up in how someone else rides is wasted energy and not what this site is all about.  it's not a race it's just a motivator right?

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  • I dont care too much about what others are doing unless its to give kudos to friends for a good ride, why I would like it is for personal reference when anilizing my own previous rides. I think it is a good harmless option for most.
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  • @Thomas - quite right.  Strava is supposed to be a motivator. It's not racing, it's not an absolute comparator (given that the majority of people in a group ride won't upload to Strava).  Use it to tack your *own* performance, and it works brilliantly.

    @Sean - when I upload, I always take 10 seconds to change the title of the ride before hitting the "Save and view" button. That way, I have an instant record of what the ride is - like "Saturday club ride" or "Solo 150km ride".  Not only does it remind *me* which ride is which, it's then pretty clear to anyone else viewing my ride what I was doing.

    If I see someone with a really good time, and the ride title is "2013 June 15 London" it's meaningless. If it's "SERRL Bletchingey" then I know it's a race, and the times are going to be very fast - and it was ridden as a group.

    I really do wish someone from Strava would make a final post to this forum, and make a statement as to whether they're going to add "solo/group" or not.  Then close the thread.

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  • Another vote for a Group vs Solo feature.  We can't count on 100% reporting, but at least for some segments it would answer the question "Was s/he alone when s/he did that?"

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  • The feature is definitely needed.  Strava already has rider classifications based on age, weight, gender.  It only seems natural to add group/solo filter.  Each Strava user should have the freedom to define how they use Strava.  Maybe some see it as a motivator, others as a race or comparison tool or maybe even a training tool.  The fact that a noticeable drafting effect occurs at a speed as little as 12mph means that the comparison tool value is signficantly decreased if the one rider is using 30% less watts (at higher speeds) to achieve the same speed.  Having a user button to select "solo" would be very easy to do. 

    I don't see why any user would not want more filters/features.  As long as users are generally honest, then it can only be a value add.

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  • Paul, the problem I see is that throughout the course of a ride, you may be giving both group and solo efforts, so it may be difficult to classify the entire ride as group or solo. To be accurate, you would really have to specify it for each segment effort in a given ride, which is impractical. The reality is that 'all-time' leaderboards will always contain efforts where luck, weather/wind, drafting, etc. has provided an advantage to someone, and it is difficult to specify the degree of so-called unfair advantage that was used in almost all cases. IMO, the real issue to address is this: once the leaderboard for a segment is thoroughly dominated and KOMs are mostly unattainable due to group rides, windy days, etc., the incentive to hammer really hard over a segment goes away. I think the addition of current weekly/monthly/annual leaderboards that reset to encourage regular competition (i.e., you could be the KOM of the week, month or year) would alleviate this entire concern. Time-boxing the competition would keep it continually fun and makes it much more race-like. For instance, I participate in a crit series with weekly events, and I'm motivated to show up week after week just to see if I can place better each time, and try to increase my standing for the season. It could work exactly the same way for segments! Just my current take on this topic after much thought and discussion...
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  • Good points Billy.  Usually I don't find it common to be both on a group effort and a solo effort all on the same ride.  I'm either all group or all solo.  I do find that in some group rides people break off to go home or cut short a ride, so that might cause problems.  But  I don't think KOMS due to drafting/pace lining are in the same category as wind aided as everyone who rode that segment that day had the opportunity to take advantage of the wind and its likely that tail wind will come back during the year.  Its still a solo effort with no soft pedaling/freewheeling.  With drafting/pacing, you can see power outputs from SRM/powertap equipped riders that can be as much as 150 watts less than the guy doing the solo effort with the same time.  Maybe resetting the KOMS every year is a good idea, but I bet there would be some push back from those holding old KOMS.   Strava needs to find a way to recognize the best solo efforts so users are still enthusiastic and don't become indifferent.  Somehow it doesn't seem right that the fastest individual effort is buried on page 2 of a leaderboard.  I have to think there is some solution that reasonably addresses the issue.

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  • Given that i ride solo 98% of the time, how can i not subscribe to this?

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  • Funny...  when I first saw this feature request I was thinking the exact opposite of what most other comments are saying.  I was thinking it would be nice to mark a ride as a group ride so that my crappy average speed can be blamed on waiting for the slowest person (sometimes me) in the group to catch up.  If you actually stop when waiting I think that gets factored out of the average speed but sometimes I just coast or ride slower allowing others to catch up.

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  • Kevin- I guess everyone looks at this from the perspective of a group ride increasing speeds relative to solo efforts.  For sure there are those groups which are pretty darn slow.  As far as I've encountered, if you stop for less than 15 seconds Strava doesn't factor out the time.  So if you don't want to hurt your average speed and you come to a stop, you should wait at least 20 seconds or more for Strava to recognize it as a stop and factor it out.  This time can really add up especially with stop lights/signs.

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  • I can't believe this is still going. Anyway... Stopped time is never factored out for segments, only for rides. When you look at your segment effort it will report your resting time but it does NOT take that off of your segment time. Hope that clears things up.
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  • It would be great if individual segment performances could be tagged out of a ride, because right now, the only other option is to make the whole ride private which is cumbersome and overkill, to say the least.

    This feature doesn't need to be related to group rides, wind or whatever, it could be simply a "Hide" or "Exclude" button placed on each row to hide the individual performance just like you can hide the whole segment.

    The ability to tag performances properly would be even better IMO, but this simple addition would suffice for me.

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  • I just add an "s" or "g" to my ride titles or comment section to keep track.  Besides, if I own a KOM on my own, no one is really going to know or care except me.  

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  • A KOM should only be awarded to a solo effort, in my opinion group rides increase overall speed for an average cyclist especially if they are drafting behind someone who is setting a high tempo through a section. Why have KOM! many segments on Strava have times attributed to 5 or 6 riders all within seconds of each other and all on the same date, would all of the riders in that group attain the times they set if they where on there own, I think not. Strava was set up to achieve Kudos and Kudos is about individual achievements and performance out on the road, man versus the elements the hills and ultimately time, to give Kudos is to recognise an outstanding ride compared to other individuals in and around his local area and this sets the benchmark for all to follow, it inspires others to try that little bit harder which eventually leads to better times and better overall fitness for everyone, if group rides are allowed to take up a proportional part of segments then the overall affect on individuals would be counter productive and de-motivating.
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  • What if you are the lead guy of the group throughout the entire segment?  You aren't getting any aerodynamic advantage there.

    What if you do a group ride but peel off on your own for the last 20 miles home and grab a KOM?

    What if you are on a solo ride and you happen to catch someone and ride their wheel in a segment as they speed up to try and not let you by?

     

    I could see a filter, but disqualifying group rides from a KOM, I feel would open up a whole lot of bickering and people flagging rides and just making the community something not even fun.  BTW, I ride mostly solo.  I have very few KOMs, it's not because I don't group ride.

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  • Gary- pretty much right on.  KOM is singular, not plural.  One man, one machine.  In many ways it boils down to comparing an Individual Time Trial to a Team Time Trial.   These are different classes of racing and no one would put the the two times on a single leaderboard except within Strava.  Talking to people who have group ride KOMS, I don't think they understand how much greater effort it would be to replicate their times solo. 

    Scott- This is one of the problems is that riders might make individual solo efforts while on a group ride, most often because they are the strongest rider in the group.   Having the ability to mark a ride "group" or "solo" after the ride would help to clarify efforts, but is hardly perfect.  Sure, some riders could lie and claim solo when in fact it was group, but their buddies would hardly be impressed if they marked their group effort as a solo effort.  No one wants to ride with a wheel sucker who falsely claims he KOM'd something on his own.

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  • Scott - You have some valid points but sitting in a group for most of the day for some riders is like having a breather, then 30 or 40 miles in to the ride you decide to go for a segment that you know about and if you are pretty fresh you know you could end up with a KOM, would you have achieved KOM if you had of ridden solo to the 40 mile point without the help of the group?

    The wind also plays a big factor in the KOM and some riders use this as an advatage especially in hilly areas and that is part and parcel of road racing and is accepted all over the world, its still an individual effort but you know you have had an advantage.  I have looked at many of my rides and seen my placings drop on days when the wind is really gusting on a certain section and you just know times are going to tumble.  But to have a group ride blitz a certain section takes away the individuals effort and to some solo riders like yourself sets an unachievable time stat that neither you or any other solo rider could ever match unless you joined a group yourself.

    You could have the software filter group rides that start and finsih together but again this is open to debate and would complicate things, I still stand by my initial opinion that KOM's means King Of The Mountain ie Individually achieved by a solo rider against the elements the hills and the individuals effort on that day.

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  • Scott DeLeeuw said: "What if... what if... what if..."

    Well, whatever you do, don't use your best judgement. We wouldn't want to trust riders' sense of sportsmanship or anything... but, if we *did*, the solutions would probably go like this:

    "What if you are the lead guy of the group throughout the entire segment?  You aren't getting any aerodynamic advantage there." - Then you mark your ride as solo.

    "What if you do a group ride but peel off on your own for the last 20 miles home and grab a KOM?" - Then you mark your ride as solo *as long as* you didn't get any KOM's (or move anomalously far up the leaderboards) for any segments back when you were in the group.

    "What if you are on a solo ride and you happen to catch someone and ride their wheel in a segment as they speed up to try and not let you by?" - Well, the easy answer is "If you get any KOM's while you're drafting, then mark your ride as group". In reality, however, that's probably not going to happen. If you, riding solo, caught up to *them*, riding solo, then you're not going to be going any faster once you catch them... not for long, anyway.

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  • As much as my questions were attempted to make look petty, I don't feel the solutions presented are good ones.  My "what ifs" were presented as valid questions to help better understand the different scenarios and circumvent potential problems before they happen, sorry if you took it personally.

    ""What if you are the lead guy of the group throughout the entire segment?  You aren't getting any aerodynamic advantage there." - Then you mark your ride as solo."  - Granted I don't do a lot of group rides, but the ones I've done the lead rider is constantly changing.  My point was that if you have to mark an entire ride as group or solo it's only going to lead to bickering when there are exceptions like you were the front guy on a particular segment.

     

    ""What if you do a group ride but peel off on your own for the last 20 miles home and grab a KOM?" - Then you mark your ride as solo *as long as* you didn't get any KOM's (or move anomalously far up the leaderboards) for any segments back when you were in the group."  - See above, so if you peel off on the way home and get a KOM by yourself, but you also got one in the group earlier you should still make your entire ride as a group ride because that's good sportsmanship?  Sorry, but I don't agree.

     

    "Scott - You have some valid points but sitting in a group for most of the day for some riders is like having a breather, then 30 or 40 miles in to the ride you decide to go for a segment that you know about and if you are pretty fresh you know you could end up with a KOM, would you have achieved KOM if you had of ridden solo to the 40 mile point without the help of the group?"  - To play devil's advocate, I don't think most riders are going out and riding 40 miles solo  before attempting a KOM.  A group ride can be a breather, or it can be insanely hard, but to say an individual KOM received after riding 40 miles in a group isn't valid, I'm not sure about that.

     

    In reality it doesn't matter.  I don't think Strava is even watching any of these feature request suggestions.

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  • The thread which will never die!

    Let's all agree to motorpace through our favorite segments and post up some amazing times. Or disagree - which is far more likely.

    Let's simplify things. We need at least two categories of current segment kings. If it's not a real mountain, it's not called a KOM, period.

    Then we can have "segment leaders" for everything that's not a mountain. The titles will be something like Oscar awards. Best Solo Segment Time with No Wind. Best Group Ride Segment Time into a Headwind. Best Group Ride Segment Time whilst drafting a UPS truck whilst following the wheels until the final moment. And so on. As it should be.

    Carry on! And enjoy the pleasant weekend.

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  • Good post.  With the lack of KOMs I have, maybe I should want the differentiations.  In reality I just go out and ride my bike.  KOMs are cool, but if I let myself get too caught up in them my life would be immensely unhappy.  Where I ride there are so many strong riders that, even in the best shape of my life, I'm lucky to hit top 100 on most segments.  I can see the point of the group ride complaint, I just don't see a good solution.

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  • I didn't regard your questions as *petty*... I just regarded them as ones which would be easily answered by common-sense.

    The over-arching principle is this: If you were riding in a group, and you benefited from it such that you put in a better performance (on *any* segment) than you likely would have had you been solo, then mark your ride a "group".

    So, what if you're in a group but you were at the front? Then you didn't benefit from being in the group, so you leave your ride marked as solo.

    What if you weren't at the front, but you were doing hills? Well, unless someone was pushing you, then you didn't benefit from being the pack, so you leave your ride marked as solo.

    What if you were drafting off of someone who's really slow? Again, you didn't benefit. Leave it as solo.

    If you go out solo and get a couple of KOM's... and then, on the way back, you fall in with a group, and get another KOM while drafting...  my initial reaction is to say "Mark your ride as 'group'. If you really wanted full credit for your solo KOM's *and* you wanted to go for it on that last home-bound segment, then you should have peeled off from the group when you got to it".

    So, my point is, it's not that difficult to navigate these scenarios. You know damn well if you benefited from drafting or not when you're out there riding.

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  • Good points.  

    If I could deviate for a second, have you see the Veloviewer score?  http://www.veloviewer.com

    Basically takes your top 25% uphill segments and scores you against all Veloviewer Strava athletes by an algorithm he's put together.  Very cool and very humbling.  Lately I've been hitting segments here and there with the shallow thought process of increasing that score, mine is pathetic.  For the most part there are so many segments around here that I don't go out with the thought of hitting segments most of the time, I just ride and see them afterwards.

    The score gives me a broader perspective of my riding in general vs focusing on individual segments.

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  • Can Strava modify the leaderboards to distinguish between those segments completed on aero vs. non-aero wheels? I'm a 32 spokes per wheel kind of guy and it's not fair those other guys are getting somewhere in the neighborhood of .5 to 1.5 mph advantage over me. 

    Joe, please publish a flow chart on a publicly available website and share the link with us. Perhaps Velominati would see fit to add it as an appendix to the Rules. That would make it easier for the rest of us. Thanks.

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  • Marco S had the best solution:

    It would be great if individual segment performances could be tagged out of a ride, because right now, the only other option is to make the whole ride private which is cumbersome and overkill, to say the least.

    This feature doesn't need to be related to group rides, wind or whatever, it could be simply a "Hide" or "Exclude" button placed on each row to hide the individual performance just like you can hide the whole segment.

    it would rely on people's sportsmanship though...

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  • Now I clearly understand why Strava won't discuss what they are implementing or not, no matter what they add or don't add they would get torn apart by atleast 50% of the community. !   :)

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  • Daniel,  to diminish Joe's complaint  by comparing the  power output gains on group vs solo rides to gains in power output between aero and non aero wheels is ridiculous.  We have gender/age/weight filters because they matter.  So does group/solo.  Obviously you are trying to trivialize what is really a big deal.  You only get a few watts from aero gear, but you get get 100+ watts from drafting in a group.  Anyone who runs a power meter knows the benefit.

    Veloviewer is great.  It is more cycling related and less social networking.  Once they can pull the group/solo data out of the api then we're set.

     

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  • It was a joke, but maybe that point was missed. Fair enough. "It's a really big deal!" Okay, if you say so.

    Distinguishing the segment time result as from a group ride doesn't tell you anything about the effort. It may have been someone who sat in and saved 100+ watts but they wouldn't have won the segment unless they moved up from the back to the front of a large group or out sprinted the group which still is some kind of effort. Otherwise, they haven't the fastest segment time. Group doesn't tell you anything. If someone's on a group ride but takes a flyer solo through an entire segment, group or solo? If someone's churning out the big watts at the very front of a group ride not drafting anyone else, group or solo? Headwind/tailwind/crosswind would tell you more but no one's proposing that, it's a known limitation even when estimating VAM in pro races without having the individual power file details.

    Are some people clamoring for the feature? Yeah, sure they are. But it won't tell you much. Age, gender, weight, these aren't subject to much interpretation unless someone's straight up lying. Did any of you stop to consider why they haven't added the feature? 

    And agreed, Veloviewer has interesting ways of disseminating and displaying the data. A few features were lost going to the new Strava API but overall it's absolutely great. Raceshape is interesting, too, among others.

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  • Here is a perfect example of the problem. 3.3 mile segment.

    http://www.strava.com/segments/866158

    The KOM is held by someone on a group ride.  But more interesting are the riders in 6th and 8th, Dan S. and Eric B.  Dan S. is using a power meter and Eric is not. Both on the same group ride.  Power meter states Dan's power to be 236 watts and Strava calculates Eric B's solo effort to be 382 watts.  Of course, Eric wasn't on a solo effort.  But if he was, he would have had to produce 152 more watts to go as fast as Dan S went who was only 2 seconds quicker over the segment.  So essentially a 150 watt gain on this segment from the group effort.  So who really is the fastest rider on this segment?  You have to go down to 16th, Marcus Smith.  What recognition is that? Even harder to tell, is who is in 2nd?

     

    This segment shows an even greater gain in watts from the group draft effect from a ride on Jul 11th. 

    http://app.strava.com/segments/4178578

    Looking at the 2 riders in 4th position, Chris and Daniel, there is a difference of 221 watts between the Strava calculated effort of Daniel and the actual power meter recorded effort of Chris.  You really have to wonder if these riders could ever duplicate these times solo.

    The times that people ride effectively solo when they are participating in a group effort is negligible.  The whole point of a group ride is to share the load, practice pace lining, etc.  The vast majority of riders on group rides are benefitting from the draft. 

     

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  • I'm trying to ignore this stupid thread that won't die, but that last post is just ridiculous. You can't use strava calculated power for anything other than laughing at, and power numbers themselves don't mean much without weight. I weigh next to nothing, I put out virtually no power even when I'm going faster than someone. I can think of plenty of examples of this and have segments where I am KOM from a group that I was in front of. I would link them but I have to get up at 4am for a race.
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