Track Etiquette for Athletes

Most of this is common sense and simple courtesy but some seem to find it difficult to act in a sensible fashion whilst on the track. Let’s make sure that we’re a disciplined group in terms of our behaviour as well as our training.

  • NEVER go onto the track without STOPPING & LOOKING in BOTH directions! You wouldn’t cross a six lane dual carriageway without looking. Being hit by a 90kg sprinter moving at 10m/sec could be quite nasty for you whilst it might also spoil their session.
  • AVOID THE INSIDE LANE unless completing an effort. Keep this clear for others training on the track. It’s hard enough doing reps without people getting in the way unnecessarily.
  • If you hear someone shout “TRACK” it means they’re approaching at speed, probably from behind, so step aside quickly and DO NOT WEAR EARPHONES as you won’t be able to hear what’s going on around you.
  • Likewise, if running an effort and there’s somebody loitering on the inside lanes, shout “TRACK” as a warning and they should more to the right to let you pass. If doing an effort you have as much right to the inside lane as anybody else although this may not always be obvious with us older ones as it doesn’t always look like we’re running hard even when we are.
  • NEVER cut across the central grass area. Actually saw somebody do this whilst Malcolm Grace’s group were throwing the javelin. Strange but true.
  • ALWAYS check before going near the THROWING areas. These include shot, throws cage & javelin runways. There was a tragic accident a couple of years ago at a track meeting where an official unfortunately died after being struck by a discus.
  • ALWAYS check when going near the JUMPING runways & pits.
  • NEVER stand on the track when you are not training ESPECIALLY NEAR START / FINISH LINES.
  • NEVER set off to run a rep or stride around the track if you can see a faster group or athlete coming up behind you. Wait until they have passed – even if on timed intervals this will only give you a few seconds extra recovery.
  • When you have just finished a rep or stride, don’t just stop (or even lie down) on the track as you may be blocking other groups coming up quickly behind you.
  • Be aware of what other groups are doing in their session before you start your own.

With apologies if this sounds overtly dictatorial but we all want Steel City Striders to set a good example.