General guidelines on running safety for all Elswick Harriers members. Advice and guidance has been taken from UK Athletics, RoSPA, HSE and a qualified Occupational Health Practitioner. Taking into account: The number of members/runners, the broad range of age groups of runners and their abilities, the locality of where the running takes place: the club has carried out risk assessments for certain activities. As a running club we positively encourage runners to:
- Be considerate and aware of other pavement (and in some cases road) users. Give extra consideration to the elderly, young, disabled and cyclists. On training nights, do not wear headsets. Runners are likely to be less aware of their surrounding in which they are running in. Your sense of hearing is impaired. Encourage runners to observe and conduct their runs with appropriate good road manners. Do not step off a pavement without checking for vehicles and cyclists. Do not run in front of cars. Stop and wait for traffic to pass. Runners should not simply follow the crowd. They should be aware of their own surroundings and situation. Do not run against on-coming traffic, so that you can observe approaching vehicles. Attempt to run in pairs as a minimum. This advocates a safer environment. We advise runners not to lone run. Preferably run in single file on public footpaths. Be aware when running alongside a stationary vehicle. A door may open suddenly, or a vehicle may pull out, without warning. Athletes are encouraged to ‘warm-up’, prior to a running session. Encourage runners to wear high visibility clothing in dusk and dark conditions. Encourage runners to wear appropriate footwear. If runners are to run several miles (or hours) it is recommended to let someone know: Where you are running, who you may be running with, money for a phone call/drink/food, consider taking a mobile phone and inform someone as to approximately how long you to intend to run for.
- Overall, the decision whether or not to run is left to the discretion of the individual and athletes run at their own risk.
Running guidelines for warm/hot/humid conditions: Running in these conditions can pose problems for runners; for example: A feeling of generally being un-well, dehydration, dizziness, nausea, develop a chill. When running, if you become aware of such symptoms, then STOP running. If you do not feel an improvement within yourself, then seek help. Younger athletes should limit their running in the heat due to their lower tolerance of hot weather. Runners should be aware of their own limitations: some runners may have or develop ‘problems’ i.e. Respiratory, heart, specific illness, heatstroke. If a runner wishes to run, but is on medication, then seek professional advice before undertaking running in the heat. Also consider the use of a protective sun cream and taking fluids before, during and after exercise.
Running guidelines for cold conditions. Running in the cold can pose problems for runners. A feeling of generally being un-well. Wear appropriate clothing to the conditions. We encourage the principle of ‘layering’ to regulate body temperature. It may be desirable to wear hat and gloves. Be particularly aware of running in cold, icy, snowy conditions on paths, tracks and trails (appropriate running shoes may have to be worn).
Running guidelines for cross-country. Running guidelines for young athletes (Ages 11 to 16). Appropriate footwear and apparel, prior to running should be worn. Parents, the athlete and the coach should take responsibility for this. Athletes are encouraged to ‘warm-up’, prior to a running session. Running in the public domain: Runners must pay specific attention and have clear instructions given to them w.r.t. crossing roads, running ahead, lagging behind with respect to road running training. Parents must realise that at times, their children will be conducting running sessions away from the leisure centre.
- Appropriate running shoes may have to be worn. As a runner, you may at some point, be out of visual site of course marshals.
- Marshalls, supporters, coaches and animals, may also be present on or about a cross-country course.
- The nature of the terrain may well change. Hazards presented to the runner may include: ditches, streams, stiles, uneven and slippery ground conditions (this may also include varying path surfaces), overhanging branches, inclines, declines, overgrown vegetation, tree roots and other trip hazards.
- Many of the precautions for general running could be applied to cross-country runs. However, runners may consider additional precautions:
- Running with a medical condition:
The athlete must always seek appropriate advice, before undertaking any exercise.
- The athlete has the responsibility to inform the coach that the person in question has a condition.
- If medication is required during exercise, this medication must be made available to the person in question.
- The athlete should know his / her limitations when undertaking exercise, more so if training becomes strenuous.
- The decision whether or not to run is left to the discretion of the individual but they run at their own risk.
- Pregnant Runners: It is acknowledged that being pregnant is a normal physiological condition.
However, we encourage female athletes to speak to their physician before undertaking running activities.
- When running, run comfortably within themselves. If an athlete develops pain whilst running, stop running immediately.
Encourage running with a fellow colleague (preferably with a mobile phone). If they are un-well during pregnancy, it is suggested they stop running.
Encourage the athlete to inform the coach of their condition (a female’s centre of gravity is altered during pregnancy. During the 3rd trimester, a hormone is released by the body that relaxes ligaments). In both cases, there is a potential for a female runner to fall or develop an injury. It is suggested that the athlete trains with due care. Overall, the decision whether or not to run is left to the discretion of the individual and run at their own risk.
Conduct of coaches with young athletes.
- Take reasonable care in all circumstances of any young athlete
A coach will clarify at the outset, exactly what is expected of them
- A coach will consistently display, good standards of behaviour and appearance
- A coach will respect the rights, dignity and worth of every athlete and treat everyone equally, regardless of background or ability
A coach will place the welfare and safety of the athlete above the development of performance of the athlete
- A coach will encourage and guide a young athlete to accept and take responsibility for their own behaviour and performance
- A coach will ensure that the activities delivered, are appropriate for the age, maturity, experience and ability of the young athlete
- Develop appropriate working relationships with young athletes, based on mutual trust and respect.
- A coach will never do something for a young athlete that they can do for themselves
- A coach will as far as is reasonably practicable, inform parents/guardians of young athletes when either in training or at competitions, details of next of kin, known medical conditions are made available in the event of an accident, serious breach of safety or discipline while under the supervision of the coach
- A coach will be qualified under the directorship of UK Athletics. The licence and further ‘education’ will be updated as and when required.
A coach will never try to recruit, either overtly or covertly, athletes who are already receiving coaching. If approached by an athlete receiving coaching, refer immediately to the coach currently providing coaching support and co-operate fully with other colleagues in the best interests of the athlete
- A coach will try to promote positive aspects of the sport (e.g. fair play) and never condone rule violations or the use of prohibited / inappropriate substances
- A coach will not exert undue influence to obtain personal benefit or reward
- A coach will maintain a clear boundary between friendship and intimacy with athletes. A coach will never conduct an inappropriate relationship with a young athlete. There are three risk assessments that have been carried out for the club. These can be viewed by clicking on the relevant links below: