The whole world has pivoted to virtual events, but once all restrictions are lifted, will virtual events be here to stay? As part of our Recovery Hub one of our charity partners asked the following question:
Will virtual races be the way forward?
Given their popularity, people will be keen for mass participation running events to return at some point. However, it’s difficult to know when that will happen. At the moment a group of six people are allowed to meet outdoors in England, so a lot will need to change before we can have 60,000 people running the Great North Run with another 200,000 people lining the route.
Therefore, in the short term virtual races are certainly the way forward. Using apps like Strava makes virtual running events relatively easy to do.
We’ve seen some great fundraising events where individuals or groups have tried to run a cumulative distance within a month. Charities operating internationally have asked supporters to work together to run the distance to the country they operate in, such as COCO asking supporters to run the distance to their partner school in Kenya! We’ve even seen some fundraisers who are running the distance from London to Barnard Castle to tie their fundraising in with current affairs!
Alternatively, some individuals who had planned to take part in running events have run their own 10K, half marathon or marathon on the event day – including Donr’s very own Chris, who ran a marathon in his garden on London Marathon Day!
Even when mass participation running events return, there may be some supporters who would prefer to stick with virtual running events. Some may have become accustomed to avoiding crowds and be reluctant to head back into them, others may be reluctant to train for an event and risk not being able to take part if another wave of the virus hits, or some may now prefer virtual events as it gives them the flexibility to choose where and when they run. So perhaps virtual running events will be something to consider running alongside physical events in the future.
Head to our Recovery Hub to find answers to questions you didn’t know you had!