News - 5th January 2023

Nine ways to start with parkrun

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It’s a new year. Grab your friends, family, colleagues and neighbours and start with parkrun.


Insight shows us that one of the most powerful tools for encouraging people along to a parkrun is word of mouth. So, this new year, why not help a friend get started on their parkrun journey.


Here are just a few ideas to inspire them to take part.




Start with… parkrun 


At parkrun you can come along as a walker, a volunteer, or just head down to your local park and watch what’s going on.


parkruns are free, weekly community events for all ages, abilities, backgrounds and walks of life.


Everyone is welcome to take part – however they like.


Start with… signing up 


Over 7 million people have registered for parkrun globally, we’d love to welcome you to the #parkrunfamily today!


It’s quick and easy to sign up, just head over to our website.


You only need to register once, print your barcode, and turn up to any event, anywhere in the world.




Start with… walking
If you are just starting out on your parkrun journey, or thinking about building up to the magic 5k distance, our simple and easy walking plan Strive for five can be found here.


You can do it anywhere, any time.


Every parkrun event, everywhere in the world has a volunteer Tail Walker. This means that you can make your way round the course at whatever pace is most comfortable and you won’t finish last!




Start with… volunteering


Anyone can volunteer at parkrun. There’s no experience needed, and loads of roles to choose from. Someone will show you what to do on the day, you don’t need to have been to a parkrun event before, and there will always be someone on hand to help.


Volunteering at parkrun is a fantastic way to connect with, and have a positive impact on your local community. It will help you meet new people, learn new skills or simply apply your existing ones.


More than 500,000 different people around the world have volunteered at parkrun, and that number is growing all the time.


Our recent Health and Wellbeing Survey even showed that it was the people who volunteered at parkrun that reported the greatest positive impacts on their health and wellbeing.


You can check out our volunteer videos so you can see what it’s like before you try it, and there are lots of interesting and inspiring volunteer stories on our blog too.




All you need to do is contact your local event team via the details on their webpage, or on social media.


Start with… watching


parkruns take place every week, at more than 2,200 locations, across 23 countries around the world. Why not just head down to your local parkrun and have a look what’s going on. There’s no pressure to join in, and if you have any questions, approach one of the volunteers in the hi-vis vests, or one of the walkers, joggers or runners. They’d love to tell you all about the special community.


Start with… cheering


Lots of parkrunner’s friends and family come along to just soak up the community atmosphere, support their loved ones, and join in a social catch up in the cafe afterwards. All parkrun events welcome anyone who wants to stand on the sidelines and do some cheering. If you enjoy this, we’d recommend giving the parkrun Marshal volunteer role a try!




Start with… a friend 


Our insight shows that one of the most powerful persuaders for people to come to parkrun is word of mouth.
So why not sign up a friend and give the gift of parkrun for 2022 and beyond?


Start with… family


parkrun and junior parkrun events provide the perfect environment to be outdoors and active with your family.


Children aged between 4 and 11 can walk, jog or run with an adult at parkrun, there’s no upper age limit and anyone can volunteer, so it really is a family affair!


Alternatively, junior parkrun is a 2k event held on Sundays for 4-14 year olds.




Start with… the first step


All anyone needs to do is take the first step. The first step can often be the hardest, so why not help someone take their first step today. Whether that’s a step out of the front door, a step at your very first parkrun or a step to sign up to volunteer. It all counts!


Start with… having fun


Ultimately, parkruns are just a place where people can go to have a good time. Events are there every week, for people to take part however they like, as often as they like.




There are walkers and runners, volunteers and spectators, people in jeans and a t-shirt, people dressed like a T-Rex. There are dog walkers, and pram pushers, and people in wheelchairs. There are first timers, and a hundred timers.


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But what we can guarantee is that there are a lot of people out there in their local communities, just having an all round great time.




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