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5 Top Tips for Marshalling at a Race {Women’s Running 10k}

The Women’s Running 10k in Brockwell Park took place on 13th September, as the penultimate race in the series. In 2013, I ran the Finsbury Park Women’s Running 10k and loved the fun, small race feel and inclusive atmosphere. 
This year I headed along to marshall and lend my volunteer support to the smooth running of the race. It was the first time I’d helped out at an event instead of racing myself, so I’ve put together some of my top tips!
Photo courtesy of Women’s Running 

5 TOP TIPS FOR RACE MARSHALLING

1. Be prepared to be the first one there and the last one to leave
You will need to help set up – the water station, perhaps signage on the course- and make sure you are at your designated point before the runners set off. The Women’s Running 10k was pretty small,  but we still waited until the very last runner was done before starting to clear up too.


2. Wear comfortable warm clothes
You’ll be standing around a lot so might get chilled, and will probably have to lift and carry stuff at the end so it’s best to wear clothing that you can move in.

3. Familiarise yourself with the course 

The Brockwell Park race included a 5k and 10k, both of which were multiple laps so it was important to keep note of the different coloured bibs for each distance, and where people were on the course. Nothing worse than saying, “nearly there!” when there’s a whole other lap to go!
4. Make sure you know who to contact and how if there is an incident or emergency
I was manning the water station, which ended up being very near to the race village where people could be easily contacted. There were also paramedics on the course, but I had the mobile number of the race organiser written on my map as well just in case!

5. Bring your smiles, cheers and bags of enthusiasm
The most important piece of advice! Even though you might be standing there for an hour or two, cheerful happy marshalls are so much more appealing to runners. I know from being out there myself how much difference a yell and a smile can make to my race experience, so I tried to encourage everyone who passed me by – even though they did that three times!

The last race in the Women’s Running series is this weekend in Finsbury Park – you can still sign up here if you want to take part! Each event has an organised warm-up, dedicated pacing team, and a goody bag and medal for every finisher. 
The races are featured in the Women’s Running magazines, with stories on some of the individuals taking part – why they’re running and who they are raising money for, which is really inspiring to read.

I am provided with a subscription to Women’s Running through the magazine.co.uk blogger programme- you can sign up  for your subscription here

Have you ever marshalled at a race? What would be your best piece of advice? 


Beki x

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  • Reply Maria

    I really like marahaling, but I have not marshaled many races, although I have for quite a lot of parkruns!
    I agree, smiling, clapping or cheering makes such a big difference. And yes, add on time to when you think you will finish, because there are always other things that need doing after.

    September 24, 2015 at 6:41 am
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