Every year from 23-30 September the European Week of Sport promotes more active, healthier lifestyles to millions of people in Europe and beyond.
With parkrun now operating across much of Europe, and the European Week of Sport’s tagline ‘be active’, we take a look at how parkrun celebrates healthier and happier lifestyles.
parkrun is a shining example of a successful, European-wide initiative that helps people be active, in whatever way suits them, and brings about wider positive impacts on health and wellbeing.
parkrun events are now operating again across most of Europe, with events in 13 territories as Austria joins Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Sweden and the UK.
Around 1,200 weekly events see 160,000 walkers, joggers and runners complete 5k, and in excess of 21,000 volunteers take part.
At parkrun you really can join in however you choose. You can walk, jog, run, volunteer, cheer others or just come along and support. There’s a volunteer Tail Walker, so nobody ever finishes last, and there are no cut off times at parkrun.
There’s also no need for any special equipment; you just need your barcode and something you feel comfortable in. You can wear whatever you want, and you do not need any experience of completing a 5k, and there’s no training needed to volunteer either.
The focus of parkrun is all about being outside with others, making friends, connecting with nature, and getting a dose of all round really positive energy.
And, despite being called parkrun, it’s not at all about running. Thousands of people walk, in fact there are more than 3,000 walkers each week at parkruns around the world.
We even have our own walking plan, Strive for Five, which helps anyone thinking about being able to walk 5k build up to it in their own time, at their own pace, wherever and however they like.
But, reminder! You don’t need to be able to complete 5k to come along to your first parkrun, and when you’re ready to give it a go, you won’t ever finish last as there’s a volunteer Tail Walker for that.
parkrun joins people and organisations across Europe in celebrating the European Week of Sport, encouraging people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds to be active.
Why not bring someone new along to their first parkrun this September, and walk, jog or run with them, or head along to your local event and volunteer together. However you choose to participate, we know you’ll love being a part of your local parkrun community, and can’t wait to welcome you soon.
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