Run Leader Roles and Responsibilities
Thank you for volunteering to take on the role of run leader for Mole Valley Runners. These guidelines should answer any questions you may have and form the basis of the committee’s expectations from you in your role.
As a Run Leader, you are expected to complete the following responsibilities as part of your role:
- Attend the UKA Leadership in Running Fitness course
- Hold an up-to-date DBS (after 3 years you will be required to update this)
- Complete the EA online safeguarding course
- Sign and return the club code of conduct
- Attend relevant Run Leader meetings as appropriate
Following completion of the LIRF course, Run Leaders are expected to remain committed to Mole Valley Runners for the foreseeable future, with a minimum of 12 months assisting or leading. If a run leader decides to leave MVR before this time, they will be eligible to repay the full cost of the course. After 6 months of assisting or leading runs, as from the date of receiving their licence MVR will repay any outstanding balance to cover the full cost of the course. You will be added to the Run Leader Group chat to ensure you are kept up to date with club information – this is also a place for you to ask questions if required.
- To help members identify the run leaders, please wear your MVR club kit where possible – if you don’t have one please let us know so we can give you one.
- If you are regularly leading at a specific run you will be added to that Whatsapp group – please use this to arrange routes and communicate if there are any changes to your availability.
- Working with the other run leaders in your group, plan weekly sessions with a predetermined set of goals and objectives (e.g. distance, support for less/more confident runners, route etc). Aim to have a front leader and back leader and others in the middle if appropriate. Rotate these roles where possible to ensure all leaders have opportunities to plan a route, lead the run and also be back runner.
- Ensure a quick kit check and that members are wearing the appropriate attire for the run. If leading a run during darker nights give advanced warning for the need for high visibility clothing and head/chest torches. If running when it’s particularly hot, please remind runners to bring a drink.
- Plan to change the route to an area lit by street lights and/or reduce/split the size of the group during night runs to ensure safety of runners i.e more visible trip hazards, ability to see where all runners are.
- Post goals, route and associated risks on the MVR Facebook page where practicable at least 24 hours before that session will be held.
- Record attendance of members at any groups via current booking system (Run together app).
- Lead the group in a warm up exercise, using dynamic stretching techniques.
- Lead the members at the appropriate pace of the group and plan to have other leaders to assist in the middle and/or back of the group.
- Make the group aware of any risks that appear on route (e.g. obstructions, tree roots, uneven ground, fallen trees, single lane traffic, roadworks). Risks must be highlighted at the beginning of any session and as necessary throughout the run, encouraging other members to shout out any obstacles to those behind the lead runners.
- Whilst leading adjust route/session where necessary due any unexpected risks or obstructions.
- Check-in with the group regularly to make sure the pace is ok – even if someone verbally says they’re ok, check their breathing and body language confirm they’re ok.
- If a member is finding it difficult to keep up, please encourage other members to loop either ahead or to the back so you can re-group, and ensure all runners get the same amount of rest if you stop or slow down.
- Encourage and motivate all group members. Ensure they are made to feel welcome and for the less confident runners, talk of pace is kept to a minimum to prevent a rise in anxiety. At MVR runners are not defined by the distances they run or how fast they run but how they can help support and motivate each other, especially those low in confidence.
- Account for all members to ensure that they return back to the finish safely – if a member or members want to cut back early, please ensure a leader goes with them when possible.
- Lead the group in a cool down/stretching routine.
- If you post ad hoc running sessions on the Facebook page they are open to members and these require the same degree of preparation (objective, route, risk assessment, record attendance) as club runs where possible. If you want to post a casual buddy run, please ensure it is listed as a buddy run rather than a club run.
- Ensure runners medical details and next of kin remain confidential and are only used for emergency situations.
- Maintain a good, positive and encouraging relationship with all members.
- Remember sessions are for the benefit of the members not the leaders training program for events.
- If you would like to attend a club run as a member and not lead, please book on via the booking system as per member guidelines.
- If you would like to attend a club run and be counted in as an additional leader, please notify the regular session leader and they can then add you at the start of the run in a leader capacity.
- If taking any photograph’s please ensure members are happy to be included in these – explain they will be share on the club’s Facebook and Instagram pages.
- Run leaders will be expected to complete a 1st aid course either online or at joining a club arranged event.
- Run leaders will be expected to carry a mini first aid kit (supplied by MVR) on each run (including foil blanket) as well as a charged mobile phone. Where possible an instant ice pack should be kept in their car or a mini one carried with them (preferable not essential).
- Always ask if there are any pre-existing injuries prior to the run and if anyone discloses anything during the run that gives you cause for concern, encourage them to seek medical advice.
- Should any information come to light during a run that you think is a safeguarding issue, refer to the club’s Welfare Officer (Nina Belk).
- Be aware of the risks of providing advice. In particular if not backed up by your 1 day Leadership in Running Fitness Award, be sure to issue a caveat ‘based on my experience/opinion’. This includes any advice not included on the 1 day LiRF. Providing advice falls within the parameters of your qualification. Any injury or accident that arises from such advice that a member 'follows' you may not be covered under your or the club’s Public Liability Insurance and you may be held accountable. Refer members to a Qualified Coach, Nutritional Advisor, Fitness or Health Professional for further support.
- In the event of an accident or near miss, please contact the committee to ensure all relevant documentation is completed. An on-line United Kingdom Athletics (UKA) incident form must be completed and uploaded to EA.