ITRA Runners’ Ethics Charter

Ukraine has a large number of interesting trails and some of these trail races are certified by ITRA and accordingly conducted to the principles, principles of the International Trail Running Association (ITRA), and runners who participate in ITRA races, in turn, must comply with the “Charter of Ethics” to the statutes of this organization, namely paragraphs 7 and 8 of Article 2 of the ITRA statutes.

Therefore, in this article, I decided to tell a little about this very interesting document and what it is about.

Charter of ethics Introduction

We, members of ITRA, representing various components of the trail running community from 5 continents, to support the main stages of our sport and create the conditions necessary for its future prosperity, decided to unite our cultures and passion for uniting our heritage, our views on trail running and our values.

These values ​​have stimulated our initiative because they are the soul of trail running, the core link shared by different players and participants in the discipline, the core link where authenticity and fair play are central.

In fact, what is trail running other than an authentic outdoor event, without any external details, a wonderful way to offer access to our regions, our trails, much like sharing our “homes”? What could be a better driving force for trail running than the motivation and desire of the organizer to greet runners, such as greeting friends to share with them something important, really something important, where passion, fun, worldview, and human relationships are central?

By creating this atmosphere, this structure, using simple and effective rules, which, of course, include all players, we can be sure that we will spread for a long time the values of our sport, as well as explain everything that unites us:

  • Surpass yourself and explore your physical and mental abilities while in contact with beautiful and sometimes harsh nature.
  • The pleasure of running without having to focus on striving for success, even if it does not prevent a person from being proud of his final rating.
  • Sharing your passions and emotions with other runners and volunteers in order to experience the pride of being a “finisher”.
  • Mutual help and support to the end and share the emotions of crossing the finish line together after several hours of effort in order to experience a great moment of fun with all the participants and players involved in the event.
  • Be in solidarity…
  • Listen to the stories of great champions about respect for the performances of unknown runners…

An analysis of these comments outlines the foundations of the unwritten culture that has united players in the trail community since its inception and continues to do so as our discipline becomes more popular.

We wanted to formalize these principles in the form of an International Trail Running Charter, defining the underlying values: the aim of this initiative is to share the main points that determine the behavior of all players, whether runners, organizers, partners, etc. volunteers, residents or individuals. , responsible for the territories and regions where trail running competitions are held.

Adhering to, promoting, and realizing these ideas is a testament to the commitment to the sport, which is perceived as a human adventure, a source of self-realization and exchange.

The operation of this Charter is in no way a call for uniformity or standardization. This leaves everyone free to express their commitment to the spirit of trail running according to their culture and characteristics.

Trail running values


Authenticity is the first value for trail running. Trail running was originally born out of the motivation of runners to do their sport in contact with nature, to experience the beauty of the landscape and learn to develop without any tricks in an environment that is demanding for both body and health. spirit. Trail running is a real sport because it creates a confrontation between the participant and the untouched nature as a source of inspiration that surpasses itself, but also a source of harmony.

As a social activity, trail running promotes human relationships based on simplicity, friendliness, communication, and respect for differences. The trail running community gives these true values ​​the same value as performance and competition.


When trailing in the open, humility is a behavior that is adapted to both the environment and oneself.

In the natural environment, it is based on taking into account the existing natural hazards, regardless of the importance and quality of the measures taken by the organization of the race to ensure the safety of its participants. Humility in the face of nature implies the ability to exercise caution and can lead to the rejection of race or the intended project.

As far as each person is concerned, humility is based on the awareness and knowledge of one’s limitations so as not to question one’s physical or mental integrity.

As a type of behavior, humility is an integral part of listening and learning to better understand the principles that govern the environment or the basics of intense sports in the environment.


Fair play shows the faithful acceptance of the rules not only in letter but also in the spirit that determines their definition.

For runners, “fair play” means following the rules of the competition, not fraud, not breaking the rules, refusing all forms of doping; but also embody the human values ​​of trail running in all their races; mutual assistance and solidarity with other runners, respect for all players present at the race.

For the organizers, compliance with the rules of fair play involves the use of the necessary means to combat “fraud, rule violations, doping, physical and verbal violence, exploitation, unequal opportunities, excessive commercialization and corruption” (excerpts from the Council of Europe Code of Sports Ethics).


Strives for a fair balance based on impartiality and equal opportunities, which should benefit every runner.

Trail racing is open to all runners. The rules are drafted in such a way that they apply equally to all stakeholders. All athletes are subject to the same conditions and have the same rights and responsibilities. Measures taken to greet the best athletes should in no way prevent the participation of other runners.

The organizers are obliged to ensure compliance with this principle of fairness, to conduct the necessary checks, and to offer all participants the best possible conditions for the race.


The principle of respect includes respect for others, self-respect, and respect for the environment.

Respect for others

Respecting others means understanding and accepting their differences, and acting in a way that does not disturb or disturb them. It is also understood that race takes place in an environment that has its own culture and traditions; therefore, he uses the necessary “knowledge and understanding” to respect the local population, its culture, and customs.

Each runner also agrees to treat with respect all the people met along the way who simultaneously benefit from the open terrain (other trail runners, hikers, etc.).
Each runner agrees to know and follow the rules of the race in which he decided to participate.


Trail running practices can be risky, and the pursuit of success and / or satisfaction does not in any way justify distorting more or less long-term good health.

Every runner must be especially vigilant not to take any doping drugs and not to abuse self-medication. They must take care not to go beyond their limits to such an extent that it may harm their physical or moral integrity.

Respect for the environment

The race takes place in a fragile natural environment. All players involved in trail racing, runners, organizers, partners, accompanying persons are obliged to protect the natural balance.

The organizers of trail racing should do everything possible to reduce the negative impact associated with the course of their races. They are committed to sharing information and making efforts for education to promote a common understanding of the fragility of the environment.
Each organizer will identify the environmental risks associated with their event and suggest specific actions to minimize the risks. They will encourage the use of public transport or car-sharing and limit the use of other motorized equipment as much as possible.
Each runner is committed to the most appropriate behavior to minimize his or her impact on the terrain he or she is traveling on.

Together, members of the trail-running community act as ambassadors for environmental protection.


Teamwork is a value that is practiced and shared by people in natural areas who can become hostile, and therefore they should help each other to progress better together or just survive. In the name of the principle of solidarity, each player in trail running is asked to give priority to helping those who are in danger or difficulty, wherever they are and under any circumstances.

On a more global scale, trail runners and players often show solidarity by committing to environmental, social, or social causes or helping the disadvantaged. The organizers of trail racing implement this principle of responsibility, directly supporting charity and sustainable development; many participants “run for the cause” to support their chosen projects.

Thank you for reading, I hope you found it interesting.
If you have any thoughts or opinions on this article then I’d love to see your comments.

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Andrii Androshchuk
Andrii Androshchuk

I like running. My blog about running and digital marketing:

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