Nationally Hastings is ranked as the 13th most deprived out of 317 local authorities in England. People with low socioeconomic status along with other marginalised groups are widely underrepresented in sport and this is particularly prominent within trail running. Access to trail running and outdoor fitness in the area is hindered by multiple practical and socio-cultural barriers and more can be done to ensure that a broader spectrum of individuals are utilising the green space we have locally for the benefit of their physical and mental health, to make friends, build their confidence and to see positive change in their lives.
- We will improve upon our group sessions that target financial barriers to participation that include free and low cost sessions, acquire better equipment and will support low income athletes with appropriate kit. - We want to take particular action to increase participation within marginalised groups by means of taster days and targeted group sessions providing specialist support and coaching where necessary. This goal will also be aided by raising the profile of Grass Routes by engaging with the local community and implementing an... - Advertising strategy that outlines us as an inclusive and welcoming space for all people of all fitness levels
Grass Routes is the first trail specific running group in the area, led by an experienced trail runner and qualified Run Leader with England Athletics who, along with a team of volunteers, have lead two beginners programs and hosted 40 successful trail running sessions after just 4 months in business. We are the only CIC run group in Sussex, putting people before profits. Our Run Leader and volunteers are all local, from a variety of backgrounds, most having experienced at least some degree of marginalisation or adversity themselves - providing positive role models for the people we aim to target. Our motto is 'Breaking down barriers'.