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Running in a kid’s fun run or youth track event can be a great experience for kids. For children 5 and under focus on “dash” events that range from a few yards to 400 meters. For children 5 and over, kids fun runs that are a ½ to 1 mile long may be considered, but allow for a combination of running and walking. Children ages 12 and over may want to participate in a 5K run. Children ages 15 and older may want to participate in a 10K to half marathon event. Children 18 and older may want to participate in a marathon or further distance. These are general guidelines and the distance a child can physically and emotionally tolerate will depend on the individual, however, longer distances (10K and over) should wait until after puberty.
Founded in 1958, the Road Runners Club of America (RRCA) is the oldest and largest national association of runners and running organizations dedicated to growing the sport of running. The RRCA uses the term “running” to encompass the broad spectrum of “running” in the US, including competitive running, jogging, fitness walking, race walking, and wheelchair fitness/racing on roads, trails, and tracks.