Health and Safety

Personal Responsibility

The Club is providing general health and safety advice and guidance to its members so that they may make risk based decisions whenever they choose to take part in any club training/activity.

As runners you have a responsibility to do your best to prevent harm to yourselves, your running partners or members of the public. It should be acknowledged that as club members you owe a duty of care to not willfully injure yourselves or others by your negligent acts or omissions.

Running however safely organised carries a certain amount of risk and those taking part in any running need to be aware of those risks in order to minimise and accept them.

Experienced runners will already be aware of many of the possible risks but novices may not and it falls to the more experienced runner to take on the role of responsibility to mentor those with less experience.

Much can be done in preparation before running to ensure that the risks are foreseeable and are appropriately managed. For example, when running at night on or near roadways, you should always wear the reflective safety bib or hi-viz vest, which the club has either provided you with on loan, or one you have purchased yourself. Please note that all Newmarket Joggers are expected to purchase and wear reflective safety bib/hi-viz vests throughout the winter training nights and we recommend you also wear reflective clothing throughout the rest of the year to create awareness.

Dogs (on or off the leash) are not permitted on any club training runs.

The club does not allow you to wear headphones on training nights as the use of MP3 players can create a danger to

the wearer and those around them. People wearing them are less likely to hear vehicles or other road or footpath users and there is a history of associated accidents.

The club uses a number of on and off-road running circuits with variations on these to extend or reduce the distance of the runs. The club will informally assess these routes on a constant basis and will make changes to the routes where it is felt that safety may be improved. The club relies on its members to report any problems encountered whilst running these routes. For example, damaged pavements, potholes, poor visibility etc and please report any health and safety issue to a member of Committee

  • Where a group includes a Group Leader (s) or nominated person a short pre-run briefing should be carried out before each session starts, including details of the route to be taken, approximate effort and total distance of the session. The Group Leader should ensure that runners within the group are aware of the session they are about to undertake so that they can ensure adequate preparation/ ability. The duration of the briefing session should be proportionate to the ability level of the group.
  • Runners must inform the Group Leader or other person within the group, if they are taking an alternative route or leaving the group. Ideally this should be agreed in advance of the start of the run.
  • Runners should be split into ability groups. Where the group includes a Group Leader or nominated person they should be aware of the numbers in their group, keep watch for back markers and check all are coping with the session. ALL members are expected to look out for each other at all times.
  • Runners are expected to note the condition of surfaces and to warn other runners of any trip hazards or obstructions as the session progresses. For example, kerbs, unevenness and dips in pavement, potholes, raised service covers etc.
  • Runners should warn other runners regarding traffic
  • Runners are advised to ignore any verbal abuse from pedestrians and any confrontation should be avoided.


  • Always select a safe route to cross roads and avoid crossing in blind spots, near parked cars etc.
  • Aim to cross roads in single file rather than all pouring across together as this is not only dangerous but it will annoy other road users and give the club a bad name.
  • Don’t assume that car drivers can see you just because you can see them. During the winter months, i.e. when light is poor you should wear reflective clothing and hi-viz safety bibs.
  • On country roads with no footway and generally always run towards on-coming traffic so you can take evasive measures if necessary.
  • On a session when runners are strung out some distance then it is helpful if a warning of ‘car coming’ could be shouted to those behind who may not have heard the approaching vehicle.

Cross Country

  • When running cross-country such as on the Heath or 3 Churches, an experienced runner familiar with the route should lead the run. The Group Leader should ensure all runners in the group are briefed on the route before starting.
  • Beginners or runners unfamiliar with the route should not be left to fall behind, alone and unaccompanied.
  • Wear appropriate footwear such as running shoes designed for off-road use if necessary.
  • Assess the terrain as you run and plan ahead and choose a route to avoid holes, rocks or tree stumps. Experienced runners should pair up with inexperienced runners.

Environmental Conditions

  • Hydrate properly before, during and after running. Make use of the free water provided at Newmarket Leisure Centre in the foyer and / or bring your own water bottle.
  • Do not run into the sun when on the road, as drivers may be dazzled and may not be able to see you.
  • Post exercise, remove damp clothing as soon as possible and replace with dry.
  • When light is poor wear reflective clothing and the high visibility safety bibs provided by the club.

Personal Limitations

  • Know your limits of fitness.
  • Following illness or injury take a conservative approach to resuming training and if in doubt seek medical advice and also seek advice from experienced club members.
  • Seek medical advice from your doctor if you have a pre-existing medical condition that you think may place you at increased risk when running and ensure you notify the Club Officials in writing and verbally of any condition (s) you have which may affect your running and those around you.
  • Notify Club Officials of any specific medical condition or when returning from long-term injury or a debilitating illness.