I would have to say that its much more dangerous to run around the city with an IPOD then it ever would be in a race. The deaf run races, and they do just fine. It comes to personal preference.
What I really think is happening here is that people think that if you do something to ease the pain of a 26+ mile run, then your cheating. We all know that theres two parts to a marathon, 20 miles, and the last 6.2. that 6.2 is all about the mind, so if you find a way to numb yourself, or to give that extra push I say go for it.
The only danger I've ever seen attributed to IPOD use in a run is when I see them getting stomped on the road becasue they bounced of the wearers arm band.
JR007, we understand that we don't "need" iPods to run road races; we chose to run with iPods. And I agree that people have been running long before the advent of iPods; I was one of these runners. If you have been running for some time, you must also acknowledge how the iPod has helped our sport to grow. In the New England area there are loads of races every Saturday and Sunday with a good number of participants registering and racing at all different skill levels; much/some of this increase is because of the iPod, which has influenced folks to get out and run.
But please help me to understand this whole "social aspect" point of view. I've run over a hundred races from marathons, HM's and 10Ks. One thing they all have in common as far as camaraderie is that runners socialize at pre-race Expo's (except 10K's that may or may not have an Expo), while we warm up, at the very start of the race - wishing those nearby good luck - and the end of the race; very few people that I see carry on conversations during the entire race.
Moreover, this "social aspect" is overrated. This is a race after all; who hasn't picked up their pace towards the finish line to pass some runner(s) or been passed. Just last year I slowed 10 feet from the finish line for a woman in front of me who was joined by her child to run across the finish line together; as a result two runners passed me and I was upset with myself for letting it happen.
For myself, I'm busy trying to focus and concentrate on my game plan during each road race, setting a good pace, making good strides, proper breathing, taking liquids, enjoying my surroundings, acknowledging folks who came out to cheer and watch the race, etc. Although the pace of my long training runs allow me to talk to a companion, I have to admit that I savor every breathe during road races and would not be able to carry on a conversation without having to slow my pace. I socialize before and after, not during.
My last point is you are wrong when you state if someone wants to wear an iPod during a road race that they are "basically" allowed to. The USATF has banned these devices during road races and many races strictly enforce this rule. Sure a runner can hide their device and put it on after the start, but there are many blogs that discuss how other runners are turning in runners who wear an iPod at water stations on the course. Probably the same individuals who volunteered for hall monitor in school. The point is they are not allowed, which is the reason there are so many forums on this topic; but I'm certain you already know this.
Here's a bit of running history, not long ago marathon runners mocked the half-marathon, now it is a staple included with almost every marathon.
I still have not read a good explanation for why non-iPod wearers are so offended by those runners who want to listen to music or a good audio book while they run a road race; after all we are not offended by their decision not to want to wear an iPod.
I've said enough.
It's interesting this topic has engendered so much debate here, but in Europe and Asia -- and maybe other places too, but I haven't run/raced there -- very few runners use iPods or mp3 players. Then again, far fewer people run there, period!
Many people suspect that since there are plenty of deaf runners out there as well as attentive iPod racers -- as has been mentioned here -- the head phone ban is really more about maintaining the purity of the sport than safety. (Someone pointed out that if one earbud is all that stands between us and devastating injury/death, then that's a race that probably shouldn't be run.) So with regards to the purity of running, what about all the other products and gadgets that have changed running -- and in many cases made it easier, or at least more comfortable -- over the decades? Heart-rate monitors and other pacing devices? Compression tights that supposedly increase circulation in the legs? Orthotics? Pace bracelets? Bodyglide? What's the difference between making use of technology used to create the moisture-wicking fabrics we wear on our bodies and making use of technology used to create what we wear in our ears? (I realize there is a difference on a practical level, but that was sort of a philosophical question ...)
Somewhere in the world someone is training when you are not. When you race him, he will win.
Ok, ok.. I know "need" was the wrong word. you got me. No one needs as iPod... However, this whole safety issue is just sillyness. and a tv? really? thats a little different. .... On a slightly different note, does anyone know Nike's response to this issue? They have invested a lot of money in the fact that people like to run with music.... just curious?:|
Everyone has their reason to run with Ipods, but as long as they are not interfering with your race, then what's the big deal. I am going to be running in my first half-marathon and will be using my Ipod to keep my mind at bay and to help me through the race. I find it very appalling that you can mock someone who can cross the finish line of the Chicago Marathon, regardless of their time. I can not wait till I will be able to do that... Thanks for bringing all those new runners out there to the reality of trying to compete with experience runners.
Old Concord runner
When I started running we ran in sneakers and cotton sweats. I ran with a stop watch in my hand to time my runs. As the years have passed sneakers gave way to running shoes, cotton to Polypropylene and a stopwatch to a wrist watches that take my pulse. Oh yes and I must not forget my Sony walkman has been replaced by my iPod. I was worried that you young runners would ban runners with replacement parts because we my break down in at a dangerous point in the race. Or maybe you have not thought about that risk yet? "If a man does not keep pace with his companions," "perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away."
I've run races from 5K to a marathon, some with my iPod and some without (usually because the battery died). Having tried it both ways, I much prefer to have my music! I can always turn it off if social opportunities present, but the music helps keep my mind focused in longer races. As for safety, most of us train with our iPods and mp3 players, and I think most of us take care to be aware of our surroundings, listen for sirens or warnings, etc... We all sign waivers when we enter races; if it isn't already in there, maybe race directors could simply add a waiver clause covering this issue.
I would love to see Nike and Apple jump into the fray and help us music users out!
I agree with the no iPods in races. I have run the Boston Marathon, and dream of being able to go back in time to run the race when it was pure. If you enjoy the history of running races you will understand what I mean. After 1966 the sport of humans running races was tainted and has been continually contaminated, corrupted and defiled ever since. iPods are the latest invasion that devalue the sport. In 1967 B.A.A. officials tried unsuccessfully to physically remove a women from the race once she was identified as a woman entrant. In 1975 wheelchairs division competition was officially recognized. The modern Olympic marathon was based on the distance RUN, according to famous Greek legend, in which the MALE Greek foot soldier Pheidippides was sent without MUSIC from Marathon to Athens with the news of the victory over the Persian army. There were no women, wheelchairs or iPods. Get rid of them all, they are all equally distracting and dangerous on the road.
Because there is no glory, no finisher medal no tshirt in just running down your own streets with an iPod, that;s why JR007! People need to stop being so overprotective and not to mention snobby. We are adults, we can look out for ourselves during a race I am not that zoned out just because I have an iPod on. And sorry, for all the purists out there who think you shouldn't run with one becuase it was not that way when the sport began. No one used heart rate monitors or Garmins years ago either and I don't see you wanting to throw that out? I will be one of the thousands wearing their iPod anyway. I just ran the NYC Marathon with mine, no problem. I wear one earphone or keep the volume reasonable to hear any possible announcements/warnings and I also keep my eyes open. I don't race to socialize so why do I need to talk to others during? I race for ME, and when I'm hitting a tough hill my playlist gives me that extra oomph to power up it a little more fast than I would without it. I can still enjoy the race, the new place I paid money and spent time to travel to in order to do it WITH my iPod on.
And if you want to talk community - the Nike+ system promotes that! Where else can you load up your miles that your iPod recorded to a worldwide website and challeng your friend running in Nigeria, or your cousin running in Philly when you live in San Francisco? It also allows you to compare your pace, average run with people in your own neck of the woods to find running partners and groups. I'd say that's pretty social, and is a community. So rock on iPod wearers, USATF will get with it sooner or later if enough of us keep wearing them.
Spiridon you are a cave man. Really, you want to throw out women, non-elites/slower runners, wheelchair racers from marathons? Ludicrous. If that's your preference YOU need to run on your own and not participate in marathon. The sport has not been tainted, its been revitalized by including more people. There are more people hitting the road now than ever and taking on the challenge of marathon to produce some amazing performances and finishes. I ran a marathon earlier this year next to a man with ONE Leg and was so inspired to keep up with him I had my fastest finish yet and qualified for Boston.
There are more people now than ever with an interest in running and an interest in the sport. Boorish 'purists' like you take away from the beauty, fun, amazing thing that is MARATHON.
Wonderwoman32 and Jenandcal, I thought Fred Flintstone was only joking; trying to make a point how stupid this rule is? But I'm a guy; perhaps if I were a woman I wouldn't see any humor in the post.
Anyway, great points Wonderwoman32.
By all means enjoy your ipod and rock out. Enjoy your tshirt and medal too. I guess I stand corrected. I just don't like the fact that people that think that they can't enjoy a race w/o their ipods.
Maybe someone who understands this rule can tell us why they're illegal. I do think that they should be illegal in triathalons for saftey issues (I know different sports).
I do have one question though. If wearing an ipod is illegal in a marathon, did you to tell the event planners for the Boston Marathon that you cheated in qualifying for it? Doesn't seem fair to the person that didn't qualify and followed the rules (no matter how stupid they may be).