What's wrong with running?
Running is one of the oldest sports and a people's sport. Running events are among the sporting events with the most participants. And yet, professional running is such a niche sport, gets hardly any attention and has little to no hype. But why? What do sports like Crossfit, UFC, Formula 1, road cycling or even darts do better? Why do these sports, some of them much younger, outpace running in terms of popularity, hype and budgets?
Four years ago, I posted a few longer posts on my insta account about running and used the hashtag #runningdeservesmore for the first time. The more I've lived the lifestyle of running, the more I've wondered why, while so many people run, there are so few fans of the sport. It certainly has something to do with the fact that the stereotype of running is still anything but sexy. And because many people don't know that there are other distances besides the marathon, that it's allowed to have fun with a community during and after training, and that there are cool running outfits besides neon-colored finisher shirts and ⅞ tights.
But let's assume you still manage to get someone - maybe even a few people from the younger generation - excited about running and interested in road racing and track & field. Even then, it's freaking hard to be a fan of running and follow what's happening! The current coverage is anything but good. It needs people to "translate" running, pack it in a cool way and make it interesting & engaging. So, the goal has to be to create the most awesome "product" possible that addresses and allows as many people as possible to follow running.
I've given a lot of thought to the topic over the last few years and I'm sure something has to happen with the sport we all love (even those of us who wear socks in spikes) and I know that many people in the running bubble think similarly and it's possible to change things together!
That's why in the coming months I will regularly use this platform to share my thoughts on the topic, ask critical questions, look at what works in other sports, what running could adapt from it and hopefully inspire or trigger someone out there to think further and thereby start a movement to push the sport of running forward.
See you next time!