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Rallying Communities Around Sport


Moving across the country to a city where I knew no one, it was really important for me to find community. My first thought was to turn to sports, specifically running, since that’s where I’ve always found “my people”. Strava has played a crucial part in helping me build Pacific Beach Run Club from 3 people in 2020 to now over 200 weekly runners. Our commitment to running, and the ability to have friendly competition via club leaderboards has helped create friendships that will last a lifetime!”

 – Todd B., Pacific Beach Run Club

Courtesy of Pacific Beach Run ClubCourtesy of Pacific Beach Run Club

A club’s sport is an important cultural influence on its community. It’s the common interest, the beacon that brings athletes together; it also is one of the primary ways that athletes explore clubs on Strava. Once athletes join, it’s how they will compete, what they talk about, and how organizers can bring them together in real life. For community builders on Strava, Clubs offer over 40 sports options to connect with athletes now, with more on the way. 
Try these tips to motivate your community through the club sport type.

Lean into the weekly leaderboards
Last Week and This Week leaderboard toggles on webLast Week and This Week leaderboard toggles on webClub leaderboards can be great engagement tools for club admins. The ‘This Week’ and ‘Last Week’ leaderboards reset every Sunday night at 12 am with a clean slate on web. These date ranges are fixed, though understanding how they work can unlock their potential, and a podium celebrating Last Week’s Leaders keeps celebrations top of mind.

Aggregate Club leaderboard stats on mobileAggregate Club leaderboard stats on mobile

And with aggregate totals across the club also shown on mobile, clubs can offer diverse types of goals, including both cumulative individual and collective challenge goals, for example, on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. Collective goals are a great way to include any athlete in a club goal without the call for competition. 

(Scatter plots are only displayed on clubs with less than 500 members.)



Keep it fresh with new sports
Partial list of Club Sport Type OptionsPartial list of Club Sport Type OptionsA club’s sport doesn’t have to stay static, after all. Between seasonal changes and diverse training options, switching the club sport type can be a pro move for club organizers. Cycling clubs can switch to snow sports for off-season training, for example, and rowing clubs could alternate with weightlifting as the training focus—and the weather—changes through the year. Clubs focused on community, such as clubs for workplaces or clubs offering weekly motivational challenges, can regularly set new sports to keep engagement high and excitement stoked. 

Take note, though: leaderboards for clubs with 2,000 members or more would be cleared when the club sport type is changed, and leaderboards will then be rebuilt as athletes upload new eligible activities. It’s a good idea to time these changes with the Sunday night reset in some cases. 

Shuffle the leaderboard and celebrate more members

Strava Club Leaderboard Filters on webStrava Club Leaderboard Filters on web

Club leaderboards include several stats that best reflect the sport or group of sports selected for the club. Sorting leaderboards by a given statistic will also repopulate them with stats from all club members, not just those that were originally on the leaderboard. This can be a great way to recognize athletes who have impressive placements outside the primary stat. For example, some athletes may be uploading more actively but aren’t accruing enough distance to be keeping up on the distance leaderboard. Their club admins can sort the leaderboard by total activities to find these athletes, for example, and recognize their efforts periodically through posts in the club, too. Celebrating underrecognized athletes like this can surely solidify a community’s bonds across all members, fostering camaraderie, mentorship, and motivation, most importantly.

Take advantage of other Strava leaderboards

Club Filter on a Strava ChallengeClub Filter on a Strava Challenge

Strava Club filters on Segment leaderboards in the mobile appStrava Club filters on Segment leaderboards in the mobile app

And some clubs can engage with one another on other leaderboards on Strava, namely, Segments and Challenges. Community builders can rally club members with a segment challenge for a local, real-world competition, or join a Strava challenge to experience a broader competition as a collective. Each of these leaderboard types can be filtered by an athlete’s joined clubs, and filtered by some time frame options. Keep in mind that these are public leaderboards, and activities need to be visible to everyone to be included, including through club filters.




What’s on your wishlist?
We know fans of Clubs on Strava want more, though, so let us know–share your thoughts in the comments and in new posts in this space to share your ideas! How could Strava improve the way your communities gather around sports? What opportunities would community builders like to see to better engage with and motivate members athletically?

STRAVA | Support Team

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