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Nike+ Observations

A disappointing problem with the Nike+ system is that the device is not consistent when measuring distance. I run the same route every day. I measured the route quite precisely using my bicycle odometer: it is a shade longer than 6.2 miles, enough to ensure a 10 kilometer route. The Nike+ system, which is based on an accelerometer which fits in the runner's shoe, clocks this route at anywhere from 5.9 to 6.5 miles.

I suppose that makes the system about 90% accurate, and for a non-competitive slug like me perhaps absolute accuracy is not essential. Still, today I was disappointed when the Nike+ announced the end of my run was 5.99 miles in a time of 1:02, with an average mile pace of 10:29. In reality, at 1:02 for 6.2 miles I achieved very close to a ten-minute mile average pace, which is my current goal.

From what I have observed, the Nike+ records distances as being shorter when the running pace is consistent, and longer when the pace varies throughout the workout.


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 21st, 2008 10:11 am (UTC)
Ooh, how frustrating!
Oct. 21st, 2008 04:33 pm (UTC)
I wonder what the Nike advantage is over a plain simple stopwatch.
When I run or ride I typically do the same course so the distance is not a variable
Oct. 21st, 2008 11:19 pm (UTC)
The only "advantage" is that the Nike+ "high tech," and therefore "cool." I suppose it gives people a legitimizing excuse for running with an iPod beyond simply listening to music.

I'm probably going to return to the basic stopwatch method soon, either instead of or in addition to the Nike+. (Of course, the Nike+ records the time of the run, so it is a glorified stopwatch of sorts.)
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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