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Running Global - (Photo by Canva)

The announcement this week of Irelands newest online platform for runners exemplifies the continued and growing popularity of running throughout Ireland.

Running Global is a new virtual space for people across the globe with a love and passion for running”, explains its founder Stephen Sharpe.

A stroll around any park, waterway or public walkway across Ireland will require some quick stepping to make way for the ever-increasing running population. This increase is highlighted in the Teneo Sport and Sponsorship Index (TSSI), which evidenced a two-fold surge in the number of people running in 2020 compared with 2019. A whopping 16% of the adult population run with rates the highest amongst 25 to 34 (29%) and 35 to 44-year-olds (21%).

Sharpe, who himself started running during the pandemic and completed his inaugural marathon distance late last year, explains that “the platform’s motto is Join, Run, Engage. All Running Global is asking is that running enthusiasts from across the globe join the forum, get out Running and then engage with the Running Global community”.

The Running Global platform requests that members post running times, photos of routes and running scenery. While indeed a platform for Irelands running enthusiasts, Running Global aims on developing a global reach, asking followers to capture such experiences as running alongside the Eiffel Tower, across the Golden Gate Bridge or through the Amazon Rainforest.

Building on the exponential growth in people taking up running, Stephen Sharpe believes a platform like Running Global can help runners maintain consistency and motivation, which could become a challenge once the pandemic ends and the busy life normality returns for many.

“It’s incredible to see so many people out running. Taking Dublin as an example, there are community groups such as the Cherry Orchard Running Club in Ballyfermot, the Jobstown Running Club in Tallaght and the Dublin Innercity Running Club that have encouraged so many people into the activity of running”.

“But it’s important to help people stay motivated, particularly once the restrictions end and everyone gets back to frantic living. Busy and frantic routines can have a pernicious effect on self-care. I believe online platforms like Running Global can agitate for people to stay motivated and linked in as we move forward.”

For further information, please contact Stephen Sharpe directly via the Running Global Facebook page.

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