Running with music

What do others feel about taking part in organised runs that ban the use of ipods? I recently took part in the Alresford 10k and was verbally attacked in the toilets before the race by a fellow female runner for wearing my ipod. She very impolitely informed me that they were banned and that as I was blatantly breaking the rules (I was genuinely not aware they were not allowed) then I ran the risk of being disqualified. I calmly replied that "I was an adult and perfectly able to make my own decisionsf". I later overheard her reporting me to the Organisers who quickly made a long, loud and strong announcement that we were not permitted to use music systems. I fail to understand the reasons behind this. I run around 5 times a week and enter many different races, all of which I listen to music because I find it hugely helpful. Why, I ask myself, can enormous events, such as the Flora Marathon which accommodates thousands of runners over a much longer distance, happily allow runners to make their own decision on this topic, without any problems at all, and yet a small, local event feels it can dictate in such a ridiculously "jobsworth" manner? I feel health and safety is not only ruling our lives, it is in many ways ruining much of our pleasure and taking away our 'personal responsibility' and decision making powers. How do other runners feel about this topic? I am outraged and will definitely not be taking part next year, nor will the friends that were running with me.



  • If it says in the rules that you cant use ipods then I am afraid you can expect to be informed politley or otherwise that you shouldnt be using them

    The 'should they/shouldnt they' debate will rattle on for a decade but the bottom line is that if you want to use them then find a race that doesnt adhere to the rules

    Simple as really  image

  • RicFRicF ✭✭✭

    Sounds like the rant of someone used to getting her own way all the timeimage

  • TimeaJTimeaJ ✭✭✭

    Unfortunately, participants have no say in formulating the rules of any racing event, and if the organisers for any reason decide they do not want to allow ipods, then runners should respect that. Yes, it can feel very patronising and can be a nuisance for music lovers, I agree, but perhaps we should not make a big deal out of this. 

    I almost always listen to music during my training runs, and have taken part in races where I had to do without my iPod. The scenery and the atmosphere did compensate me though.

    I think that lady could have been more polite to you, though, and I am sorry you did not have a good experience at the race!

  • "the Flora Marathon" ?

  • Mr PuffyMr Puffy ✭✭✭
    Dawn the reasons are that you may not hear instructions from marshals, you may not hear emergency vehicles, you may be distracted fiddling with your iPod and run into someone else. You might drop it and stop dead to pick it up thereby causing an accident.

    You might not do any of these of course, but I have seen all of the above at races, and I'm glad that more and more organisers are taking the issue seriously and enforcing the no earphone rule.

    It makes it safer for the majority.
  • I doubt if there is any reasonable proof that i-pods have ever caused any accidents or safety problems at a race. I don't like people wearing i-pods in races but I think it is a step too far to ban them.
  • Mr PuffyMr Puffy ✭✭✭
    Quite right, it's not the iPods, it's the iPod users that cause the accidents.
  • I experienced an ipodder being shouted at, whistled at etc by the marshal who was on a bike. They were in the way of a wheel chair racer coming through at speed. It took physical action to get them out of their world and back into the race. Prat. If people are going to wear them in a race that does not discourage them, they still need to hear warnings
  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    Cracking first post Dawn, if I didn't know better i'd suspect you're a mischevious forumite on a wind up. But just in case you aren't, you've geniusly stumbled on perhaps the most repeated thread in RW history.

    You get your staunch pro and staunch anti Ipod camps. Pro say they aren't affecting anyone, they can hear instructions, they're not a hazard to anyone, and it's their preference to run with music, as it's...easier.

    The anti camp react furiously to such a notion, saying how can you possibly be fully aware to instructions, possible hazards, and generally arsing about in someone's way.

    My own view is that I can see why listening to music eases things along. I run every single training run with music on. But then I would never dream of doing a race with an ipod. How are you possibly meant to run at your optimum level with a distraction like that? You can't feel your breathing as much, you're not as aware of how the race is developing, and you can't hear anyone about to come past you!

    When I marshall a half marathon each November, giving encouragement to ipod wearers is a waste of time. They can't hear you saying encouragement any more than they can hear you saying vital safety instructions.

    so you have to just let them risk it frankly!

  • TROLL !!image
  • Rich Jackson wrote (see)
    TROLL !!image


  • Umm it's a tuff one as runners do need to be able to hear instruction from marshalls. I usually train with music but don't use it during an event for social reasons. Have seen other use them and never had any problems. However when you catch up to someone and say Hi, it does seem off putting when they are 'pluged in', but not offensive. Each to their own.

    What about 'half volume' during events........... don't think you could enforce that though!! image

  • Has anyone seen the film Troll Hunter?
  • Deeoo wrote (see)

    What about 'half volume' during events........... don't think you could enforce that though!! image

    Or "one ear free" ?

  • If it is a troll, it's 10/10 - especially with the indignant tone. The name, 'Dawn Fisk', is just too perfect.

    It's their race, so their rules. If I ever get any authority in our running club, the local 10k will very quickly become the 'Pirates and Prossies' 10k, and there will be stern words over the tannoy for anyone not wearing an eye-patch or boob tube.
  • Tim R2-T2Tim R2-T2 ✭✭✭
    Good troll.

    However In one race I saw someone nearly run over by a bike and I was nearly knocked into someone I was trying to overtake who had no idea I was there. Not a problem for me, people bounce off me, but if I had hit someone like Dawn no doubt I would have been reported to a marshall for my outrageous lack of consideration and probably sued.
  • Mr PuffyMr Puffy ✭✭✭
    Dawn isn't a troll ffs she took part in the race and is in the results.
  • Mr Puffy wrote (see)
    Dawn isn't a troll ffs she took part in the race and is in the results.

    Well in that case as my Uncle Felix would say " pull dat ting outta yer arse"


  • Hog-mouseHog-mouse ✭✭✭

    I doubt that Dawn knows that this is one of the most discussed and contentious issues in running today. Well on these forums at least.

    I think StevieG sums it up quite well and as Meldy says, rules is rules.

    As for the Q. "What do others feel about taking part in organised runs that ban the use of ipods?"

    I'm more than happy to take part in any event that bans the use of ipods. Just as I wear a cycle helmet for events that require the use of such. I wear my race number where I am told to and abide by the rest of the rules as I don't want to be dq'd. Simple as really.

    I used to take part in drag racing - each individual and their bike are scrutinised. If you don't pass muster, you don't race.

    Being adult means you just suck it and get on with having fun.

  • I know the route of the race in question, I have done this race in the past.  Parts of it are run on small, B or unmarked roads known extremely well to locals who race down the middle very fast.

    As far as I'm aware, none of the local roads was closed, simply marshalled at fairly infrequent points with signs posted "Caution Runners".

    When I've done the race before, local traffic was a hazard.

    Apart from the fact that "rules is rules", if you can't hear traffic, then you're putting yourself and others at risk.

    I didn't take part last weekend, but was trying to get through the area before the race started.  It was very difficult trying to get past people who were running around the town, warming up, wearing ipods or other devices, speakers in their ears and who clearly couldn't hear me saying, then shouting "Excuse me" as I tried to get past.

    I think that the woman who spoke to you in the loo over-reacted, she could simply have pointed out the rules.



  • Dawn Fiske wrote (see)

    was verbally attacked in the toilets before the race by a fellow female runner for wearing my ipod. She very impolitely informed me that they were banned and that as I was blatantly breaking the rules (I was genuinely not aware they were not allowed) then I ran the risk of being disqualified.

    Should have said can't hear you

  • I just had a look on the entry page for this race and I can't see any references to the no headphones thing. Maybe they are just assuming people know now.

    I found another race you did though Dawn and the rules there very clearly stated no headphones were allowedimage


  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    Headphones fans always argue how aware they are, and are adamant they are not causing a hazard in the slightest.

    I defy anyone who's raced a half marathon or further hard, to say that they're as aware near the end of the race as they are the start. You become less responsive, and slower to react as the race goes on.

    Any further distractions such as headphones can only reduce awareness and response times even further.


  • I'm with you Dawn ... I will decide what I will do when running in their race not them with their bloomin' jobsworth attitudes!. Why on earth should we allow them to dictate what we can and can't do in their race!

    I mean if I only want to run 11 miles in a half then I will, they can stick their 13.1 mile rule where the sun don't shine .. I mean I paid my money right ?? ... and as for saying we ain't allowed to get taxis during a full ... well don't get me started on that ridiculous rule !!! The sport of running is being ruined by these jobsworths and over officious idiots !



  • Whilst marshalling a few years back at a busy road junction, one of the runners who was breaking the rules by wearing headphones was almost knocked over by a car as he neither heard the car behind him or my shouting. God forbid if he had of been hit.

    The answer is simple - check the rules before entering a race, only enter those that you agree with and stop moaning!

  • I'm amazed that she's done so many races and only now come across the no iPods rule. Maybe she's one of those who don't hear race briefings as shes busy listening to music ?
  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    In fairness Coughie, a lot of people talk through race briefings, or arrogantly assume they've heard it all before.

    Not me though...i always listen. image

    Bruce, liked that...image

  • When this race first started, it was small, very local, runners were mainly only those living in and around Alresford and - with all due respect - in comparison with club-run races, fairly amateur.  A lot of people ran using ipods / MP3 players etc and it wasn't really an issue - it was more of a "fun run" than anything else.

     It's now a lot more well-known, entries have increased significantly in recent years and it has become much more professional in the way that it is organised - although it is bound by the UK Athletics Road Race rules, I suspect that the organisers don't necessarily remind entrants of these rules, specifically the one about ipods. 

    When I did it a few years ago, there was nothing said at all in the rules and I'm pretty certain nothing was said at the race itself about ipods so people were clearly going around wearing them and starting off with them clearly in place. 

    Given the number of "amateur" runners who enter it would probably be a good idea for the organisers to include something on the entry form next year.

    Even so, there will still be those who think that it doesn't apply to themimage

    image Bruce C



  • Well all this BS aside i looked at the results for the Alresford 10k and its looks nice and fast.

    Anyone beside Ms Fiske raced it?

    Not that Ms Fiske actually raced

    Oh thats crewl!

    Where is Alresford by the wayimage

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    image Mr Forde!

    Out of interest, what time for 10k would count as "racing" in your book then?

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