Inspiration News

Competition: Stop watching, start riding! Join the FOCUS Strava Challenge

The German brand FOCUS Bikes have unleashed more than just a cool competition with their ‘Stop Watching, Start Riding’ campaign – they’ve also put our screen time under the microscope. Exactly, you read it correctly: it’s about what you’re doing right now. Here’s our guide to how best to limit your usage as well as all the info on the competition.

Any idea how much time you spend in front of a screen? We’d hedge a bet that in many cases it exceeds the time you spend with your friends, your partner, your kids, and probably your bike. Ouch, not a nice thought, is it?

Is social media cycling’s biggest rival?

A current study by O2 puts smartphone users at an average of 2.1 hours per day, with more than a quarter of all 18–29-year-olds spending upwards of 4 hours online each day. And nope, that doesn’t include ‘telephoning’ in the classic sense of the word. To really grasp how much of an influence smartphones have on our lives (or, perhaps better put, how much they consume us), try and gauge the length of time you’re not using your phone, how quickly you react to an event, and your urge to share this in real-time. Only 22% of those surveyed claim to let an hour pass without having their phone in their hand – for 18–29-year-olds, that number sinks to 7%; listening to music is part and parcel of free time, remember. One-in-two of this age category responds to a message within 5 minutes.

A question that everyone needs to ask themselves

One way to monitor your usage is to activate the screen time function on your phone; as well as being faced with the stark reality of your (addictive) behavior, it also helps you also identify which apps are most to blame, and puts you on the track to more sustainable smartphone usage. It isn’t just about the benefits to your health, your ability to be physically in the present, and the impact on everyone around you – but about all the damn cool things you can do instead. Chances you might be missing out on, like your dream partner over there that you’re too absent to approach because you’re in a bubble. Opportunity costs are not a myth, so whatever you do, keep an eye on them. Of course, these costs don’t actually equate to financial costs; they’re more about what you’re giving up (the opportunities) by choosing something else (i.e. your smartphone). So ask yourself this: instead of consuming screen time, what else could you be doing?

Grab the chance to win a FOCUS THRON² 6.9, JAM 8.9 NINE or IZALCO MAX 9.7 AXS


The aim of the FOCUS Strava Challenge is to reduce our screen time and increase the time spent riding. Here’s the challenge explained in FOCUS’ own words:

We waste an immense amount of time pointlessly surfing the internet with our mobile phone. We watch video after video and follow strangers having great fun on their bikes. It’s time to change our behaviour. Instead of watching bike edits we actually could be out riding our bikes.
With Beat Your Screen Time we challenge you to ride more and spend less time online: Ride 20 hours or more in the next four weeks and reduce your screen time accordingly. As a reward you get the exclusive Beat Your Screen Time badge and the chance to win a FOCUS bike. You can choose between a THRON² 6.9, JAM 8.9 NINE and IZALCO MAX 9.7 AXS. Stop Watching. Start Riding.

The challenge runs from 30th March until 26th April 2020 and asks for 20 hours of riding in that time period. Head here to sign up, right now.

How do I see my screen time usage?

If you’re running an up-to-date system on an Apple product, you’ll find the Screen Time function in Settings and it can inform you in real-time, precisely how much time is spent in the illuminating light of your MacBook, iPhone, iPad or iPod. You can set Downtime and App Limits for specific apps of your choosing. On Android smartphones, the Digital Wellbeing function has appeared on all models since the Android 9 and has a similar function. Previously, this feature was only attainable via third-party apps.

Digital detox, digital self-control and child safety – now is the time to think about it!

So next time you’re close to complaining about how little time you’ve got to ride, check out your screen time. (There might be some humble pie laid out on a plate for you there). Having more time is reliant on discipline, focusing on what counts, and maybe even some brutal, self-imposed limits. Those App Limits come in useful here and mean you can set time limits to minimize the risk of aimless scrolling. Any advice for getting up and out? How do you self-motivate to move? We’re keen to hear – shoot us an email

Oftentimes it’s a case of being too relaxed and not getting into gear that prevents us from getting out. Now with the chance to win some seriously great bikes, the FOCUS Strava Challenge could be exactly the motivator we were looking for. But let’s be honest… you aren’t truly embarking on a digital detox unless you just switch your phone off, throw it onto the shelf, and just go out there and rip. Hello, freedom!

All the information:

Did you enjoy this article? If so, we would be stoked if you decide to support us with a monthly contribution. By becoming a supporter of E-MOUNTAINBIKE, you will help secure a sustainable future for high-quality cycling journalism. Click here to learn more.

Words: Robin Schmitt Photos: FOCUS PR

About the author

Robin Schmitt

Robin is one of the two founders of 41 Publishing, a visionary and go-getter. While he now enjoys every second on the bike – whenever his busy schedule allows – he used to race against the clock at enduro events and a few Downhill World Cups. Besides that, Robin practises kung fu and Zen meditation, plays the cello or with his dog (which actually belongs to his girlfriend), travels abroad and still reviews numerous bikes himself. Progressive ideas, new projects and major challenges – Robin loves exploring undiscovered potential and getting to the bottom of new trends.