Poor people and girls less likely to enter running events, research shows

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People from deprived areas are less likely to take part in 
organised running events, new research has suggested.

A study of participation in Glasgow’s three major running events also found teenage girls are less likely to enter than their male counterparts.

The Glasgow Centre for Population Health looked at data from 2008 to 2011, noting the age, gender, geographic and deprivation profile of entrants in the Great Scottish Run, the Junior Great Scottish Run and the Women’s 10K.

It found good participation from across Scotland and from Glaswegians, but also wide 
“socio-economic and neighbourhood disparities”.

The research showed people living in the least deprived areas of Glasgow are four to six times more likely to enter than people from the most deprived areas. Teenage girls are less likely to participate in the junior race than boys.

Glasgow Life, the charity that commissioned the study, said it wanted to learn where it needed to work harder to get more people engaged in physical activity across the city.

Director of policy and research Mark O’Neill said: “These findings are important given the potential individual and population health benefits that wider participation in these running events could bring.

“Glasgow Life is committed to making these successful events attractive to a wider population.”

Bruce Whyte, author of the Who Runs in Glasgow? report, said: “It is important to understand better what motivates people to enter and the 
potential physical and mental health benefits of participating in these runs, and so we are planning further research with Glasgow Life.”