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How did Park Run in SA start – Bruce Fordyce

By March 27, 2020January 18th, 2023Newsletter

How did Park Run in SA start – Bruce Fordyce

March 27, 2020


To anyone in the running community, Park Run and Bruce Fordyce need no real introduction. Bruce Fordyce is South Africa’s star ultra marathon and marathon athlete. He won the SA Comrades Marathon a record 9 times, and of course; started Park Run in the country. Yup, Bruce Fordyce is certainly a poster boy for athleticism and achievement, and as South Africans, we are certainly proud to have him on our team!


What is Park Run?

Park Run is a collection of weekly running events usually held every Saturday morning in over 1,400 locations across the globe. The Park Run event is held in 22 countries on 5 continents and requires participants to run, jog, or walk a total distance of 5km. If you’re a newbie to the idea of working out, there’s no need to shock the system. Kit up in your running gear, head to your local Park Run event, and walk the track – the more you do it, the fitter you will get. You will find many people doing the very same thing. Phew!

What’s unique about Park Run is that it is all inclusive. Anyone can attend, it is completely free, and people regularly attend with their friends, family members, kids, and even their dogs. It’s an event aimed at getting people outside and active. And guess what? It’s working!


How Park Run Came to Be

The very first Park Run was held in 2004 in Bushy Park, Teddington, UK where 13 runners got together for a run. Now, that day seems so long ago when you consider that the international Park Run family is over 3 million members big! The official founder of Park Run is Paul Sinton-Hewitt.

In 2011, Park Run was born into South African communities thanks to Bruce Fordyce getting involved. He started Park Run in South Africa with the first event being held in Delta Park, Johannesburg. The first event was attended by 26 people and from there, the event has simply flourished. The South African community of Park Runners now consists of between 40,000 and 60,000 members running at 150 different locations throughout the country. Now, that’s impressive! We owe it all to Bruce Fordyce who took the initiative of bringing a fantastic health and fitness event into our very own country! Thanks Bruce!


Is Park Run Available in Your New Home Country?

As an expat, you are probably looking for ways in which to fit into your local community and meet new people. Park Run is a great way to do that. Luckily, or should we thank “thankfully”, Park Run is typically available in most popular countries to immigrate to. You can find more information and sign up for Park Run in the following countries via the following resources:


Park Run South Africa

We can’t forget about Park Run SA. Where can you do Park Run in the country? Find a Park Run event near you by using the SA Park Run events map here.


Park Run Australia

Australia is a country that has truly embraced the Park Run concept. Park Run events are held at 389 locations in Australia. Find an Aussie Park Run event near you by using the events map here.


Park Run Canada

If you have moved to Canada, you will be lucky enough to choose from 40 different locations for Park Run events. You can find a Park Run event in Canada near you by visiting the Canada events map here.


Park Run New Zealand

There are currently 62,564 runners participating in Park Run in New Zealand. If you want to meet people and get fit and active in your new home country, Park Run is a great place to do that. You can find Park Run events at 29 locations in New Zealand by using the local events map here.


Park Run United Kingdom

If you have moved to the United Kingdom to live and work, you might be surprised to discover just how big the health and fitness community is there. In fact, there are 2,358,333 runners that participate in Park Run each week. To find a Park Run event in the UK near you, consult with the UK events map here.


Park Run USA

Park Run in the United States is not quite as big as you would expect it to be. It is however growing. Currently, 53,695 people in the USA participate in Park Run, which is held at 42 locations across the country. You can find a Park Run event location near you in the USA by consulting with the events map here.


What Makes Park Run Special

You might wonder what sets Park Run apart from other running club events and that answer is quite simple: everything! Park Run is a free event that requires no fees from its members. Each member receives a barcode when signing up which is scanned at the end of each run. This records the attendance of the runner and records the time of their run. This is then published on the website after each event and posted to the runner’s private profile/account. Runners can then track their progress and it also keeps track of how much distance a runner has done in completed park runs overall.

Some of the runners that attend Park Run list a variety of reasons why they love the free world-wide event; with a sense of community being number 1 on the list. Other reasons to love Park Run include the sense of achievement after each event, highly supported progress, camaraderie, and of course; the fact that it is fun!


Go For a Run While We Take Care of Your Financial & Tax Emigration

When choosing to work with FinGlobal blow off a little steam, go for a run, and we will take care of the nitty-gritty of the admin involved. Our team of dedicated consultants provides a premier service and guidance to all expats seeking our assistance with their tax and financial emigration needs. If you would like more information and advice on the processes involved, simply get in touch with us. You can send us an email or give us a call today.