In Ukraine, quite a lot of different events take place every year trail races, and some of them have certificate from ITRA. What does it mean? International Trail Running Association (ITRA) is an international association of runners. It has its own principles and principles, which must be followed by all organizers of competitions held under the auspices of ITRA. Athletes participating in them must, in turn, in accordance with the statute of this organization, namely clauses 7 and 8 of Article 2, follow the rules "Charters of Ethics".
Therefore, in this article I decided to pay a little more attention to this issue, to talk about this rather interesting document and what it says.
Charter of ethics of runners
The Charter of Ethics consists of an introduction and the main part, in which the main principles of runners are indicated. In particular, the introduction states that all ITRA members representing different components trail running community from 5 continents, decided to unite in a joint organization in order to promote the development of our sport, to create all the necessary conditions for its future prosperity. At the core of this is authenticity and fair play, which must take center stage.
What is trail running? In addition to being a sport, it is also a kind of recreation in the fresh air without any external props, getting to know new regions and places, a great way dating runners among themselves, in order to share something important with each other. And the main thing in this is passion, joy, fun, worldview and human relations. To create such an atmosphere, it is necessary to use simple and effective rules.
All that unites us is:
These are the foundations of an unwritten culture that has united players in the trail running community since its inception and continues to this day as our discipline continues to grow in popularity. To formalize these principles, the International Trailrunning Charter was created. The purpose of this initiative is to share the main points that determine the behavior of all players, whether they are runners, organizers, partners, volunteers, residents or people responsible for the territories and regions where the events are held trail running competition.
Adherence, promotion and implementation of these ideals are evidence of commitment to sport, which is perceived as a human adventure, a source of self-fulfillment and exchange.
This Charter is in no way a call for uniformity or standardization. It leaves each person free to express his commitment to the spirit of trail running according to his culture and characteristics.
Basic values of trail running
Authenticity - this is the first value for trail running, because this sport was born from the desire of runners to be in contact with nature, to feel the beauty of the landscape and learn to develop without any tricks in an environment that makes its demands both on the body and on the health of the spirit. Trail running is a true sport because it creates a confrontation between the participant and the unspoilt nature, it is a source of inspiration that surpasses itself, but also a source of harmony.
As a social activity, trail running promotes human relations based on simplicity, kindness, communication and respect for differences. The trail running community places as much importance on these true values as it does on performance, the spirit of competition.
When trail running in open terrain, humility is the kind of behavior that is adapted both to the natural environment and to oneself. In competitions held in nature, it is important to take into account all existing dangers, regardless of the number and quality of measures taken by the organizers of the race for the safety of its participants. Humility in the face of nature implies the ability to exercise caution and may lead to abandoning the route or intended project. As for each athlete individually, their humility is based on awareness and knowledge of their own limitations, so as not to question their physical or mental integrity.
As a type of behavior, humility is an integral part of listening and learning to better understand the principles that govern the natural environment or the basics of intense sports in the natural environment.
Fair play indicates acceptance of all rules established by the competition organizers, condemnation of fraud in any form, refusal of all types of doping. In addition, it also applies to simple human values that should be observed in all trail running races, namely mutual aid and solidarity with other runners, respect for all players who are present at the race. For the organizers, compliance with the rules of fair play involves the use of the necessary means of combating fraud, violation of the rules, doping, physical and verbal violence, exploitation, unequal opportunities, excessive commercialization and corruption.
Our organization strives for a fair balance based on impartiality and equal opportunity that should benefit every runner.
Trail running races open to all athletes. The rules are drafted in such a way that they apply equally to all interested parties. Every athlete, without exception, must be in the same conditions and have the same rights and obligations. The measures taken to congratulate the best athletes should not in any way prevent the participation of other runners. The organizers are obliged to guarantee compliance with this principle of fairness, to carry out the necessary checks and to offer all participants the best possible conditions of the race.
This principle implies respect for oneself, others and the environment.
Respect for others
To respect others means to understand and accept differences, to act in such a way as not to disturb and disturb one more time. Each race takes place in an environment with its own culture and traditions. Therefore, first of all, it is necessary to treat the local population, its culture and customs with respect. Each runner also agrees to treat all people they encounter along the way (other runners on the trail, hikers, etc.) with respect. In addition, athletes agree to familiarize themselves with and follow the rules of the race in which they have decided to participate.
Respect for yourself
The practice of trail running can be associated with a certain risk for the athlete's health, so it is worth noting that the desire for success and/or pleasure in no way justifies the damage that can be caused to health. Therefore, every runner should be especially careful not to take any doping drugs and not to resort to self-medication. They should be careful not to overexert themselves in a way that could harm their physical or moral integrity.
Respect for the environment
Races take place in the natural environment. All those who take part in trail running races: runners, organizers, partners, accompanying persons undertake to protect the natural balance. Race organizers must do everything possible to reduce the negative impact on nature through the race itself. They are committed to sharing information and making educational efforts to promote a common understanding of the fragility of the natural environment.
Each organizer determines the environmental risks associated with holding the competition and must propose specific actions to reduce the risks to a minimum. They will encourage the use of public transport or car sharing, limit the use of other motorized equipment as much as possible. Each runner, in turn, commits to the most appropriate behavior to minimize their impact on the terrain. Together, members of the trail running community act as ambassadors for the environment.
Teamwork is a value practiced and shared by residents of different natural regions. The latter can become hostile, and therefore there is a need to help each other in order to progress better together or simply survive. In the name of the principles of solidarity, every player in trail running is asked to give primary attention to helping those who are in danger or trouble, wherever they are and in whatever circumstances.
On a more global scale, trail running participants and players often show solidarity by making commitments to environmental, social or social causes or helping the disadvantaged. Trail running race organizers implement this principle of responsibility by directly supporting charity and sustainable development. Numerous participants "run for the cause" to support their chosen projects.