British Red Cross launches campaign for runners to learn vital first aid skills


The British Red Cross has launched the #UpYourGame campaign to encourage runners to learn life saving first aid skills following research showing that 90% of runners surveyed said they would like to learn first aid or improve their first aid knowledge.  The new research reveals runners would want to help others in a first aid emergency but over half would not have  the confidence to do so.

With an estimated 10.5 million runners in the UK, the charity’s #UpYourGame campaign hopes to encourage runners, volunteers, clubs and coaches to learn the essential skills needed to act in an emergency. The campaign includes a series of videos that celebrate ordinary sportspeople helping in a first aid emergency. The first of these films launched recently, features a runner who helps her partner when he collapses and stops breathing whilst out on a run.  

While cardiac arrest associated with running is rare, 4% of runners surveyed said they had witnessed at close hand someone who had collapsed and stopped breathing while running. Despite this, over half said they would not have the confidence to help someone in this situation. 

Joe Mulligan, head of first aid education at The British Red Cross said: “Nothing should stand in the way of someone pursuing their much-loved sporting activity. But injuries and accidents do happen from time to time.  We want to enable people to feel confident and willing to help anyone when faced with a first aid emergency. Learning first aid helps to increase confidence levels and we believe it’s a life skill everyone should have."

The research revealed a significant gap between runners who have learnt first aid and those who haven’t. Of those who had learnt first aid, 59% reported that they would feel confident and willing to help in a first aid emergency, yet this figure dropped to only 18% when runners had not learnt first aid.

The British Red Cross is calling on runners to watch and share the #UpYourGame video and visit for free first aid advice for runners.

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