Championship Update

The table has been updated with all new members, bonus points and up-to-date races, this can now be viewed in full on the HRC website under the Championship Grand Prix Tab.

We also have new leaders in both the Mens and ladies tables with Maria Reed and Tony bacon taking the lead.

The next race will be the Ipswich twilight 10k on August 3rd.

Please let me know if anyone would like to add bonus points from the next Kevin Henry race which is our own in keddington, in a few weeks time.

One thought on “Championship Update

  1. Tony

    Your latest table shows just how much work is involved in being able to produce shorter tables. It’s good of you to have taken on the commitment.
    We spoke about the potential benefits of the information produced when we were at Waterbeach and I thought then I would prepare my own thoughts on the subject. I hope you find some interesting points and confirmation that more people actually use the information gathered than might be apparent.

    Why is WAVA So Useful

    For those who are experienced sports people and genuinely good at what the sport entails, joining a club is not a problem. However, many people are put off joining a club, of any sort, because they think the existing members will all be really good at the activity promoted and that they will be the only one likely to fall short of some imaginary benchmark. This flies in the face of all their experience of membership of other clubs but still it persists – a lot.

    With a Running Club the concerns are that we can’t run fast enough, or far enough. Yet few people join a Running Club because they think they will be the fastest or the best.

    Running Clubs should be providing for whatever the members want to achieve, individually or collectively. This includes training, advice, support, motivation, recognition and partners for those who want to train to be fast or long-distance runners but it should include the use of tools for building confidence, reassurance and credibility for everyone. Clubs that only cater for their elite are destined to cycles of failure because the best are always coming and going. They are usually a very small, but important, percentage of the total membership.

    WAVA is a useful tool, almost a s good as a running watch, in a number of situations. For example:

    You keep finishing nearer the back of the field in training or races. A WAVA score might prove to you that for your age and or gender you are actually performing on a par with or better than others you run with. Reassurance

    You are frustrated that you can’t catch the person who is always finishing one or two ahead of you. WAVA might show that you are actually doing better than they are or that with a little more effort you can catch them, in WAVA if not real life. Reassurance and Motivation

    In your mental hierarchy you might feel safe because this person or that always finishes behind you. It might shock you to action to find that a WAVA score shows that you are actually behind them. Motivation or Reality Check

    You are running hard and a group of people overtake you. Your immediate reaction might be to catch them up, usually a mistake, or to relax or give up. WAVA enables you to accept the overtaking and maintain your effort with the thought that unless they actually finish two, five or ten minutes ahead of you, you have still done as well as they have. Motivation

    You are slowing down and think others wonder why you bother. WAVA demonstrates to others, and consequently to yourself, how well you are doing. Credibility

    You are a slower runner who wants to take on a coaching or leadership role. WAVA scores can provide Credibility

    You like to do the best you can for its own sake. You are competitive with yourself. You accept that you will never be the quickest in a club. WAVA League Tables might provide an incentive to keep up the effort

    You realise that you are unlikely to improve your speed or PBs as you get older. WAVA scores determine whether you are preserving the benchmark you set yourself be it 40, 50,60,70,80, adjusted for age.

    How should the system operate?

    The same things don’t suit everyone but if choices are available, more people are likely to find it useful by picking the benefits that suit them. When people buy computers, they don’t necessarily know how to get the best out of them. They have to be shown. WAVA is no different.

    It isn’t, for most people, the prospect of winning the Club WAVA competition. It doesn’t give everyone the same chance because it only compensates for age and gender, not ability. It is about offering a range of potential benefits, most of all, Reassurance. Something everyone, even the elite athletes, want – even if they wouldn’t admit it.

    Giving recognition to those at the top of a WAVA League table is good and to be encouraged but we all know who the fastest runners in the Club are.

    It is interesting that we have always had separate tables for male and female runners. At the basic level this necessary because the WAVA system takes gender into account. I wouldn’t argue against this, rather point out that it is already accepted that the table has more than the single use of identifying the best runner.

    The WAVA system should give members the opportunity to examine and analyse their performances for themselves which means that their data needs to be available as early as possible when they are still interested in how they have done. It should enable them to compare what they are achieving with what others are doing. I know from conversations that a number of members work out their own WAVA score after every race but they don’t necessarily want to admit it because people might think they are being competitive.

    The potential uses and benefits should be referred to frequently. It could be included in training sessions to see where members expect to be on the WAVA spectrum. It should be as inclusive as possible. Having marathons, for example, disadvantages most members because they are either finished their long distance running, were never interested in it for perfectly valid reasons or can’t envisage ever doing one.

    Races closer to home will encourage more participation and provide more “club atmosphere”. Not everyone wants to travel 3 hours on a Sunday, giving up family time, to run for 50 minutes nor can everyone afford it.

    If races have to be nominated, flatter courses should be favoured because those less able will not be disappointed with lower (even lower) scores.

    Care should be taken about limiting races, particularly if those are going to be in peak holiday periods when many are away. Why not include all Kevin Henry races as so many people will be there anyway. Personal plug for Abington 10K.

    THE PROBLEM

    What a lot of work is entailed.

    Great that some meetings are posting WAVA times automatically, the Park Runs being an example. This may mean that there are software programmes available to assist with this.

    I have heard it suggested that only those interested in the competition should have their data tracked. I can understand this but it would suggest that only those competitive enough would come forward. Mid and, certainly lower end, athletes are less likely to participate. That would be a shame because they are the ones with most to gain from the system. The top end might not because they already know how good they are.

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