The half-marathon participants, who are they and what motivates them for training and competition?

Leif Inge Tjelta, Per Erik Kvåle, Shaher Shalfawi


The purpose of the present study was to investigate the motives for training and competing among participants in a half-marathon race. A descriptive quantitative research design was developed using a questionnaire to examine the half-marathon runners’ interest in running and competition. The total number of participants presented in this study were 862, 331 female and 531 male with a mean age 41.8±10.4 years. The major reasons for the participants to regularly practice running were because of its importance to their physical and psychological health, because it is fun, and for other health reasons, respectively. Comparing the motives for running between males and females showed that males scored higher on health, losing weight and to be able to measure their running abilities with others. Comparing the main reasons among age groups for participating in half-marathon competition, the majority of the 40 years old. The results indicate that the major reasons for regularly practice running are that running as activity is important for maintaining physical and physiological health.


running; physical and psychological health; body weight

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ISSN 1406-9822 (print)
ISSN 2228-3501 (online)
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