News - 26th September 2022

parkwalker role explained

A close up image of the back of a man's parkwalker volunteer vest. It is blue and reads 'parkwalker'.

As part of the parkwalk campaign this October, we are introducing a brand new volunteer role – the parkwalker!

 

It has been created to demonstrate that walking at parkrun is both encouraged and valued.

 

Why “parkwalker”?

 

Inclusivity and participation, rather than speed, has been a key principle of parkrun since day one.

 

People can walk, jog or run at whatever speed they want, safe in the knowledge that they will all be welcomed and applauded. Nobody comes last at parkrun and there is no time limit.

 

People walk for a range of health and social reasons – to talk and chat, to support others, to spend time in the fresh air or because they may be taking their first steps towards a more active lifestyle.

 

An elderly man is wearing a red jumper and walking in a park, just in front of the tail walker.

 

Despite this, our research tells us that some people feel that if they walk at parkrun they will hold others up, slow them down, will be on their own, or will not be welcomed.

 

Whilst every parkrun has a volunteer tail walker who provides support and encouragement, and importantly ensures that nobody comes last, the new parkwalker role will extend this support along the parkrun course ensuring that the support and encouragement is there for everyone who walks at parkrun.

 

A young man and woman are smiling at each other, walking and wearing the blue parkwalker vests.

 

The addition of the parkwalker role provides another accessible, simple and fun way to participate at parkrun as a volunteer and will help raise the profile of walking at parkrun in our communities.

 

The parkwalker(s) will receive both a volunteer credit and a walk/run credit (providing they have their barcode) when carrying out this role.

 

What does the parkwalker do?

 

The parkwalker is a friendly face(s) who provide support and encouragement to walkers, as part of our commitment to increasing the number of people who walk at our events.

 

A lady is wearing a black 100 milestone tee and walking away from the camera down a path.

 

During the event, the parkwalker(s) will be positioned ahead of the Tail Walker but behind those who are running. They will provide encouragement and support to anyone who is walking and ensure everyone who is walking feels part of the parkrun community.

 

parkwalkers will also play an important role in highlighting the inclusive nature of parkrun to those who are yet to take part… just by being there.

 

Want to get involved?

 

Whilst the role is optional we would love as many people to volunteer as parkwalker as possible. If you like the sound of it, please have a chat with your local event on parkrun day or drop them an email.

 

More info:

 

Volunteer Hub

History of tail walking

 

#parkwalk

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