Technology has wiggled its way into every facet of our daily lives. Apps can wake you in the morning, start your car, enable your home security system, stream your favorite songs, contact friends and family - all at the touch of a button. Runners have begun utilizing various applications to track their exercise and maintain their safety as well, but which application is right for your running habit?
Let’s take a look at some of the most effective apps on the market:
Strava, though not entirely geared towards safety, functions as a sophisticated GPS system that tracks performance stats after each run. As a “social network for athletes,” Strava provides individuals the opportunity to connect, collaborate, and conquer their favorite routes alongside other avid runners. Running in groups is undoubtedly safer than running solo and this social network allows safety-conscious athletes to feel protected during their daily exercise. The application also contains the Beacon feature, a means of sharing one’s location in real-time with a friend, family member, neighbor in case of emergency. More information about Strava can be found here.
Glympse isn’t necessarily a running application, but the utility it provides to runners is undeniable. For the context of running safety, the user interface is simple - select your emergency contact, set the duration of your exercise, and click send. Do you have multiple emergency contacts? Set up a Glympse group to notify all of them simultaneously. Did your friend go for a run without sending you a Glympse? Request a Glympse from them to ensure they remain safe. Plus, you don’t even need the application downloaded on your device to receive a notification! More information about Glympse can be found here.
RunRaegis is an application designed specifically for running safety. Like most running applications, RunRaegis records one’s route, distance, and average pace; however, the application truly shines due to its built-in Panic feature. The Panic button requires a double-tap (to mitigate accidental clicks) and, upon activation, emits an alarm, activates a strobe light, notifies selected emergency contacts, and begins recording real-time audio. The premium version of RunRaegis goes even further, providing emergency contacts the ability to contact the runner’s local 911 responders, follow along with one’s route via GPS, and listen in as the application’s real-time audio is streamed live to their device. RunRaegis also allows the user to mark dangerous areas on a public map via their device’s GPS capabilities, providing other runners with potentially vital information. More information about RunRaegis can be found here.