Tuesday, 31 July 2018

NAV4 Mountain Running Skills

Much is being written about GPS use in mountain running right now, with the inevitable debate and discussion on all sides.  The photo was taken just this weekend by our good friend and ace photographer Stephen Wilson (Grand Day Out) during the Kentmere Fell race.

The good thing about it is that the runners have at least stopped and are attempting to navigate.  The bad thing?   Well, it's not exactly epic visibility and why aren't they doing it on the move?

Risk, Responsibility and Adventure

The photo also throws up personal memories for me, as it was this race, in 1994 (then ran in April) that Judith Taylor died of hypothermia having got disorientated in proper poor conditions. I ran in that  that race, got a little 'misplaced' myself and suitably scared, then eventually made my escape to safety.

It wasn't a DNF, but an SMJ. and it changed my perspective greatly,  Richard Askwith's 'Feet in The Clouds' devotes a chapter to it, 'Risk and Responsibilty'  Go and read or re-read it, and think on.

So, Why Learn to Navigate? 

Well, it enhances your overall performance, gets you to the finish quicker, makes you safer, allows you to do more remote and challenging races.  It never ceases to amaze me how much time, energy and money some folk put into the sport and then ignore one of the key basic skills.   We are happy to spend on Personal coaching, flashy shoes, expensive equipment and a small fortune on gym membership and sports nutrition, but 'Navigation Skills'what, me ....I'm hopeless, Me!'

Well trust me, it's #notrocketscience #contoursarecrucial and a little bit of 'DDTT' will help!

And ... ultimately, good navigation skills will save you money and maybe your life.  Ok, let's not dwell on the dark side, but 'navigation races'  ie, fell races tend to be a lot cheaper than marked course races, where a team of people have spent hours, maybe days placing signs and arrows to guide you on your way.  It's pure economics, never mind the ethical debate about littering the fells or countryside and the obtrusion on others enjoyment.

'NAV4 Mountain Running Skills'

'NAV4 MRS' is a our One Day course; a large dose of Navigation tuition wrapped up in all the basics of running in the mountains; Navigation, clothing, footwear, food and drink (that's nutrition and hydration to some)  It's a very good grounding in all things mountain running and suitable for all speeds and abilities.

The course tends to happen once a month, runs with between one and four clients, and is based most often in The Lakes but occasionally South Shropshire and The Dales. Further details can be found on the NAV4 website, with monthly pop-up courses on facebook. All bookings for 'MRS' are by email direct to me, Joe Faulkner

The next 'MRS' course is on Saturday 25th August, from Glenridding, Ullswater.  The cost is just £65 per person, or £110 per pair.  But, if that's you in the photo above you can have a 'BOGOF; offer and book two places for just £65.  Seriously, if you are in the photo, or know someone who is get them told and claim a place.

NAV4: MRS - OMM Special

In September, our monthly 'NAV4 MRS' course has a distinctive OMM flavour to it, to prepare people for the forthcoming OMM in October.  The day's programme is based on the 'MRS' format but is an extended  day, with added to time to look at Mountain Marathon gear and techniques. The day is based at Askham, near Penrith, so easy access to the M6 and Penrith Station. Naturally, we have a great training area right on the doorstep.

Bookings for NAV4:OMM Mountain Marathon Skills are available online.  Currently there is a discount offer of 20% using code OMM20, for the first ten bookings.

Why NAV4

I believe I was the first to offer a Navigation for Runners course, and indeed our link with the OMM (formerly KIMM) goes back over twenty years, when two very well respected but little known outdoor guru's asked me to present a course as the 'young blood.. and legs.'  Roll on to 2008 and NAV4 Adventure was launched at the infamous OMM 2008, the one washed away in the floods of October that year.  Why 'NAV4'?  Well, I believe navigation skills enhance any adventure, and it could be argued that without it your not really having an adventure.

I personally have a lifelong connection with the fells running and racing, a background in training and education, and a qualified and experienced Mountain Instructor.  Our small and highly experienced tutor team and first and foremost excellent professional tutors, each with vast running and outdoor activity experience. No sponsored heros or legends, here. Read more about us on the website.

Ok, that's it no hard sell.  You either wan to to do it you on won't; it will be the best £65 you spend on your mountain running.