News - 29th January 2017

parkrun partners with the American Cancer Society


parkrun USA is pleased to announce a new partnership with the American Cancer Society (ACS), to promote the importance of regular physical activity as a part of a healthy lifestyle.


A healthy lifestyle is an important part of cancer prevention, has positive effects for those in treatment, and improves survivorship outcomes. The new ACS parkrun partnership aims to increase the number of parkrun events and participants in the US. This has the potential to increase the physical activity level of millions of Americans, as parkrun has done in other countries.


According to the ACS, some of the most important things you can do to help reduce your cancer risk include being physically active on a regular basis and getting to and staying at a healthy weight throughout life.  Research has also shown that managing weight is important for breast cancer survivors to help prevent recurrence of their cancer and that exercise is not only safe and possible during cancer treatment but can improve physical function and quality of life.


Cathryn Burby, Director of Community Engagement at ACS, says “I became a parkrunner (and ran my first timed 5K) in January 2016 at the inaugural Fletcher’s Cove event in DC. I’m thrilled that our organizations are working together under the common understanding that physical activity can save lives. I use the word understanding, not belief, as this has been (through our research and the research of others) scientifically proven, of course!”


For Diarmuid Coughlan, parkrun volunteer and Cancer Prevention Fellow at the National Cancer Institute, “Physical inactivity is the new smoking in the cancer prevention world these days. The growing scientific evidence shows that there is a very strong association between physical inactivity and 13 different cancer types independent of weight. The ACS-parkrun partnership has the potential to get this important public health message out to every community in America.”


The American Cancer Society is a global grassroots force of more than three million volunteers saving lives and fighting for every birthday threatened by every cancer in every community. As the largest voluntary health organization, the Society’s efforts have contributed to a 20 percent decline in cancer death rates in the U.S. since 1991, and a 50 percent drop in smoking rates. Thanks in part to their work nearly 14 million Americans who have had cancer and countless more who have avoided it will celebrate more birthdays this year. For more information, to get help, or to join the fight, call anytime, day or night, at 1-800-227-2345 or visit

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