How to keep safe when running
Running safety tips
As a runner, you always need to think about your safety. Here are a few basic precautions you can take that will keep you safe when running.
How to keep safe when running: Always let someone know where you are going
To keep safe whenever you go out running, even if it is only for a short run, make a point of letting someone know where you are going, what your route is likely to be, and how long you are going to be. If you live alone or are heading out when no-one else is home, ring or even email a friend or relative and advise them of your plans. You can then contact them again when you return to let them know you are back safely.
How to keep safe when running: Carry some ID with you
Accidents can happen and if something occurs when you are out running, how will someone know who to contact. A business card or piece of paper slipped in your pocket will suffice. This means that if something does occur, for example, if you faint while running on a hot day, you will be identifiable and your family or friends can be notified.
How to keep safe when running: Plan your routes carefully
This isn't a call to avoid all isolated running spots just because they go across remote areas, but you should take care with your choice, especially if you intend running them alone. Limit the danger points on your runs, such as areas where it would be difficult to see or hear you if you fell or had an injury.
How to keep safe when running: Try not to run alone and join a club
If you haven't got anyone to train with, why not join your local running club? Most clubs have a good mix of abilty groups and are a great way of discovering great safe running routes.
How to keep safe when running: Carry safety essentials if going off-road
If your routes take you out in to the great outdoors where it is very isolated, then you may need to take with you waterproofs, hat, gloves, whistle and compass, and something to eat, just so you are not caught out by sudden unexpected changes in the weather.
During the winter, when short daylight hours mean that you can't always run when it is light, you need to take a few extra precautions to keep you safe in the dark. Dark clothes can make you virtually invisible to motorists, so wear bright clothing. Look for wind jackets, tops, and tights with reflective strips that are highly visible. Alternatively, invest in a reflective running bib. If some of your routes are along darker areas, or where there is no lighting whatsoever, you could try a head torch which will light up both you and your path. You'll find head torches at your local mountaineering or outdoor store.
It's worth pointing out that running is not a particularly dangerous sport, and a bit of commonsense is all that is required. By doing some of the above should keep you safe and allow allow you to train whether you intend running alone or in the dark.