The parkrun magazine is available from many parkrun and junior parkrun events this weekend (Saturday 4 June and Sunday 5 June), and online at the parkrun shop from Monday 6 June, while stocks last!
The new magazine is a manifestation of parkrun’s commitment to inclusivity, and to connecting with those who may have the most to gain from being social, active and outdoors in their local community.
parkrun is for everyone, and so is the new magazine. The 48-page first issue is full of features and stories about wellbeing, getting active and, of course, a celebration of the events, communities and people that define parkrun. The magazine also aims to address wider health, social and wellbeing issues.
The new publication isn’t a “running” magazine. There are no articles reviewing expensive gadgets or shoes, and there are no pictures of airbrushed, filtered models. The magazine introduces traditional ‘training’, like trying out hills, without using any ‘running language’ or setting impossible targets – instead, there’s advice suitable for all abilities and circumstances. The first issue also includes a special pull-out mini-magazine intended to be passed on to anyone who hasn’t yet tried parkrun, explaining exactly what it’s all about and how to join the community.
parkrun global CEO Russ Jefferys says: “For decades now, the ‘running’ and ‘health’ magazine sector has too often been complicit in perpetuating a toxic image of physical activity. We are committed to changing this. It’s time to really challenge what it means to be physically active, what you wear, or how you take part. You don’t need to be afraid, you don’t have to win, or feel competitive. It’s time for a ‘running magazine’ to be inclusive, representative, supportive and kind. A publication that celebrates joining in, showing up, and taking part, no matter what that might look like.”
Kirsty Woodbridge, parkrun’s head of communications, adds: “As we move through the post-pandemic world, access to free, regular physical activity and the opportunity for social connection is vital. The magazine is a huge, bold step in our commitment to not only telling parkrun’s story in a different way, but reaching those who arguably need to hear it the most. It is another tool for us to engage those who might be on the fringes of society, who might be thinking about taking those first tentative steps into getting active, or are looking for free and inclusive ways to be a part of their local community; and to show them how truly welcome they are at parkrun events, and how easy it is to join in.”
parkrun has also chosen to go into print because in an increasingly digital world, time away from screens to consume information at your own pace is important for mental health. Bringing words to life on paper gives them the space to be enjoyed in any surroundings, at any speed, and then passed on for others to enjoy, anytime and anywhere.
parkrun has teamed up with independent running magazine Like the Wind to produce the first issue. Like the Wind tells stories of “why we run” rather than publishing race reports or shoe reviews, giving a voice to runners from around the world. Like the Wind editor Simon Freeman says: “It’s an amazing opportunity to work with such a pioneering organisation as parkrun, and we hope the magazine will bring their message of inclusivity to a wider audience.”
Like the Wind and parkrun are also committed to sustainability: the magazine will be printed on Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) accredited paper and parkrun has made a promise to plant more trees than are used in production.
Get the free magazine from many local parkrun and junior parkrun events, or at the parkrun shop (from Monday 6 June) for only the price of the postage.
Alison Walters struggled to return to everyday life after her cancer diagnosis and surgery. Then she came across 5k Your Way and parkrun, both of which she credits in helping her to find her feet again. I was diagnosed with a sarcoma, a rare form of cancer of the connective tissue, in 2018….
For every parkrun around the world, there is an opportunity to host an additional special parkrun event one day a year. For our friends all the way over in Canada, their special day is this Friday 1 July for Canada Day. To celebrate and mark the annual occasion, many parkruns hold a Canada Day parkrun…