Juniors: First time runners.

If you’re bringing a junior runner along for the first time, this is for you. It explains what we do and what we need you to do as well. Please contact our Junior Coordinator Marion Wilkinson in advance on 01200 871168 to arrange when you’ll be coming and what to expect.

  • New runners must attend the Tuesday training session at Barden Running Track to be assessed. You need to complete & bring a HEALTH & CONSENT FORM and don’t forget ‘subs’ are £2.
  • New runners must be in Year 4 or above and they must have shown a commitment to running.
  • All new runners are on a four week trial period, this gives us time to assess their commitment and suitability for coached training. It also gives you opportunity to experience what we do before making any further commitment to the club.
  • These requirements are based on years of experience with junior runners. The most common reason for turning new runners away is their level of maturity; we train next to public roads, often in the dark and we need to be certain that all the runners will obey instructions in order to keep them safe.
  • All juniors must be signed in and out of every session by a parent or guardian.
  • New runners will be placed in an appropriate ability group which may be at a lower level than expected, at least for their first session. This allows us to assess their fitness level without overstretching them or discouraging them from the start. We can then decide which ability group is most appropriate for future sessions.

…..there are exceptions to all the above but we’ll have discussed them with you in advance if they apply.

Clayton Junior Girls
Clayton junior girls at the Mid Lancs Cross Country fixture
  • There’s absolutely no obligation to join Clayton initially. All new starters are on a trial period to give them a chance to see if they like it, after which we usually encourage them to join so that they can compete in a club vest with their new friends.
  • Appropriate clothing & footwear; all our Thursday sessions are run outdoors unless the weather is really, really bad (rain and snow doesn’t count!) so it’s very important that everyone is safe. We can give more detailed advice if needed but, in brief, you’ll need synthetic base layer tops (long sleeve/short sleeve/one or more) to suit the temperature & a windproof ‘cag’ or top. Shorts are fine but you may prefer leggings if it’s especially cold. A thin hat (such as a ‘buff’) and thin gloves are also needed depending on the time of year. We supply HiViz vests to wear, they must be worn if asked. Footwear should be proper running shoes (not fashion pumps or imitation football boots) with decent grip. Sports Direct usually have a good selection of junior shoes.
  • It’s best not to try and eat a full tea before running; just have a light snack (banana, toast & jam etc.) and a drink, at least 40 minutes beforehand. You won’t need a drink during the session but you’re welcome to bring one to have after.
  • We don’t train members of other running clubs; if you’re thinking of joining Clayton then you’re welcome to come along a couple of times but then we’d expect you to change clubs. The exception to this is where the clubs don’t conflict; Clayton doesn’t affiliate to England Athletics for running on a track and we have several members who are also ‘additional first claim’ members of a track based club.

That’s about it but if you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask. Clayton’s junior section aims to be as inclusive as possible, we value participation and commitment and we want you to have fun!