iPhone App Review: Sports Tracker

iPhone App Review: Sports Tracker

July 5th, 2011 by

One of the best advantages to having a tiny computer strapped to your arm during your exercises is having the ability to play music, view a map, and keep connected to your family and your job. Since an iPhone is basically a more powerful computer than the first three owned by us old-timers combined, it makes sense to put all of that processing power and built-in resources to good use.

Sports Tracker is a workout tracking app that uses all of the iPhone’s resources to create a detailed workout diary, including distance traveled, calories burned, altitude and speed; plus it is socially connected, giving you the ability to share your workout and view workouts that others have shared. The app is a detailed and feature-rich way to keep track of and analyze your workout sessions.

How It Works

You can use Sports Tracker with or without the companion website, though having an account is necessary for sharing your workout and photos.

  • The home screen is a top-level view of your recent workout history along with some general data on your overall workout record.
  • The diary section is a list of all of your workouts.
  • Friends is only useful if you have added friends via the Sports Tracker website, or connected the app with your Facebook login.
  • Explore shows you a map of your immediate vicinity, along with the workouts performed and shared by others around you. You can view the data in map view or see it as a list, along with shared photos from the map area.
  • Settings is, you know, settings. Adjust the units of measure, input your weight (be honest, it helps with calorie calculations and it’s not visible to others), or tell the app to automatically go to the lock screen when starting a new workout.

Starting a new workout is as simple as hitting the Start Workout button on the home screen and indicating what type of workout you’re doing. You can also tell the app to auto-pause recording when your travel speed drops below a specified threshold. Once you start your workout the app will record total duration, distance traveled, altitude, speed, and average speed; it will then take all of those figures and create several screens worth of data for you to explore once your workout is over. During a workout you can manually enter laps or tell Sports Tracker to manually lap your time at specified distance intervals.

At the end of your workout you must save the data, and it is added to your workout diary. You can edit and add details to the information, such as heart rate data, or even adjusting lap data to view it as it was recorded or based on distance intervals selected after the fact. There is a beautiful chart that shows your speed over the course of the workout as well as your altitude,  at least as accurately as it can reasonably be measure with the iPhone’s GPS.

From the diary screen you can also manually add a workout, such as when using stationary machines at an indoor gym or if you just don’t have your device on you at the time you actually complete a workout.

Pros And Cons

There really isn’t much not to recommend about Sports Tracker. It’s design is top-notch, with an easy to use and attractive interface that presents options to you at the appropriate time and doesn’t bury often-accessed options underneath layers of screens. There is a lot of information packed onto every screen of Sports Tracker, but none of it ever appears cluttered or difficult to read. There is even a daylight mode option that flips the color scheme so that it is easier to read in bright sunlight.

Even better, the app and the service behind it (should you choose to create an account) are both free. You will need the online portion of the service in order to share your workouts and backup the data that collects on your device, and creating an account can be done through your Facebook credentials or by creating a totally new account with the website itself.

Sports Tracker is geared towards outdoor-oriented exercises such as walking, cycling, rowing, golf, etc., but any exercise can be added to your diary if you have an idea of the basic stats (calories burned, duration, distance if applicable, etc).


Sports Tracker is definitely one of the best apps of its kind in the app store. Since it’s totally free it represents merely an investment in time if you want to try it out and see how it handles your personal workout routine.

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