Off-Road Training

We offer weekly structured off-road training sessions all year road and have a strong group of qualified fell coaches and leaders in charge of each session.

Although off-road running is very different to road running, it is a discipline that is accessible to all and can be a wonderful release as you head off the beaten track and into the great outdoors. Once you have acclimatised to running over the paths, hills and fells, you'll soon discover countless new places as you explore the great British countryside.

However, running off-road can also carry greater risks to personal safety and greater exposure to the elements at any time of the year. Therefore, if you are thinking of coming along to any of our off-road sessions, please adhere to the following club guidelines and kit requirements.

Whether you are fairly new to fell running or a relatively old hand, the Fell Runners Association has a weatlth of information on races and all other aspects of fell running. Anyone taking part in FRA-registered events and many other off-road races should be familiar with the standard fell racing requirements and "best practice kit" discussed below.

Training Requirements

Running Level: The standard weekly off-road sessions are up to 90 minutes long over higher ground, whereas the fortnightly introductory sessions are 60 minutes over lower ground, so you should at least be capable of spending these amounts of time running.

Recommended Minimum Kit - Summer: Waterproof jacket, emergency food, trail or fell shoes

Recommended Minimum Kit - Winter (end of September to end of March): Waterproof jacket, hat, gloves, whistle, head torch, emergency food, trail or fell shoes

PLEASE NOTE: Winter off-road sessions are only suitable for runners with off-road experience. For more information please contact an off-road leader or email prior to the session.

Fell Racing Information

Running and racing amongst the fells, hills, dales or mountains of our beautiful country is a liberating and hugely enjoyable experience. But it can also be risky, dangerous and bewildering, especially when the weather is against you.

This section explains the mandatory kit needed when racing to maximise safety should you encounter any issues, details the way fell races are categorised, and includes links to relevant site for further information.

Best Practice Kit

Waterproof whole body cover (with taped seams and integrated attached hood), hat (buff might be acceptable but take both), gloves, map of the route, compass, whistle, emergency food

This is the mandatory minimum kit for all AL, AM and BL races (see definitions below) and race organisers may require it to be carried at other categories of event – depending on the event some race organisers may stipulate additional kit such as a head torch, first aid kit, etc.

The race organiser may check your kit before you are allowed to register or at any time during the race. The kit list may be relaxed but do not risk being turned away from the event – always bring full kit with you – better to have it and not need it, than need it and not have it.

Runners often question whether this level of kit is necessary – the kit is not needed when you are running strongly, but for a runner who has stopped due of injury or tiredness it could be a life-saver, either for you or for someone else in difficulty.

Fell Racing Categories

Races are categorised as A (hardest) to C (milder) on the basis of the amount of climb, and either long, medium or short on the basis of distance, as per the following definitions...

Category "A"
a) Should average not less than 50 metres climb per kilometre
b) Should not have more than 20% of the race distance on road
c) Should be at least 1.5 kilometres in length

Category "B"
a) Should average not less than 25 metres climb per kilometre
b) Should not have more than 30% of the race distance on road

Category "C"
a) Should average not less than 20 metres climb per kilometre
b) Should not have more than 40% of the race distance on road
c) Should contain some genuine fell terrain

Race Length Categories
a) Category "L" (long) race is 20 kilometres or over
b) Category "M" (medium) race is over 10 kilometres but less than 20 kilometres
c) Category "S" (short) race is 10 kilometres or less

Further Information

The two main bodies governing fell running in England are the Fell Runners Association (FRA) and British Open Fell Runners Association (BOFRA) which list hundreds of races each year between them.

The very digestible FRA "Runner's Rules" are also cetainly worth reading through to make sure you're familiar with all the latest fell racing guidelines.

Fell Racing Info