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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In the past the USATF has only recommended against the use of headphones in USATF sanctioned races. And the number of runners using headphones in races has grown exponentially. This year they have passed an actual rule banning them from all USATF races. Grandma's Marathon has announced they will be taking the headphones from all runners who bring them to the start and DQ'ing any runners on the course using them.<br><br>
Do you think other races should follow Grandma's lead?<br><br>
As for me I have mellowed on the question of head phones in the last two years. I have been adamantly against them and never used them in training or races. But due to the sheer numbers of runners using them in races I decided to just watch out for them. But I am glad to see the USATF take a stronger stand and a race that is actually going to enforce the rule. I guess we'll have to wait and see how this plays out over the year.
 

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This is gonna make me sound like a hypocrite. I HATE them in road races and think they are dangerous. However, in some ultras i have used them. I ran a race last year, 50 miles, with just a handful of participants. I did not see other runners for most of my time. I used the head phones for the last 15 miles of the race. It is a USATF race, so i gotta check to see what their policy is for this year. I will be kinda bummed. In races where there are 60 people spread over 50+ miles of course, i do not think it is an issue. When you are running a road race with 10,000, or even 30,000 people, it is dangerous.
 

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I don't think it makes you sound like a hypocrite at all! I definitely agree with your assessment. Sheer numbers should dictate a ban. Grandma's is not small. Using them in a 5k, 10k........come on, people. A small marathon where you will approach water stations alone........maybe. Ultras....hey, if you can hear music, you're not passed out. I ran the second half of a marathon last summer, and I was happy that I brought my garmin to play with, because for 13 miles, one truck passed me, and other than a couple people at 3 water stations, I was alone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I agree that I encountered no problems on either of my trail runs with headphone wearers and I can see where they might come in handy for races of that distance. On the other hand the specific reason I personally wouldn't wear them is I'm clutsy enough on road races, let alone trail runs. I'm willing to bet that had I worn headphones during my Mississippi trail run I would have had more than one fall to tell y'all about. <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"><br><br>
I don't remember a whole lot of headphones in the trail run but for the ING Georgia Marathon I thought they must have been passing out headphones as part of your packet pickup there were so many people wearing them.
 

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Well, most of you know where I stand on the topic. But outright banning is going to create problems.<br><br>
I know, I know. I agree with Sue, 5k? 10k? Suck it up people. But there are races where I'm sure that the rule can be bent.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I'm not so sure. In the past it was a suggestion, not a specific rule. Now that USATF has made it a rule I don't know if a USATF certified race can simply decide to allow them. It'll be interesting seeing how this plays out over the next year or two.<br><br>
Suppose I'm finisher number 3025 as opposed to the winner but I complain about the few hundred runners that were ahead of me with headphones on. Do the race officials move me up despite my time?
 

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and, in essence, that's probably what'd it take. The RD cannot ignor a complaint. I ran a marathon once that two of the top guys had outside assistance, one had his girlfriend ride her bike next to him and the winner actually stopped and got his legs massaged. The race said there were no complaints lodged, thus, no DQ. (I have to wonder how the race even knew about the incidents "if" a complaint was not lodged).<br><br>
The headphone rule has "always" been a point of contention. Eight years ago, I took second in a marthon. the woman that won, wore headphones. A race official approached me and asked if I want to file a complaint. I was never near the woman and felt her wearing them didn't affect me at all, so no. After this new USATF interpretation and ruling, if this were to happen, I'd probably say "yes". Because??? I followed the rules and she didn't.<br><br>
I believe your scenario will play out.
 

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Ban them all. <img alt="icon_cheers.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/icon_cheers.gif"><br><br>
If you need headphones for anything less than a half, then you dont need to be racing.<br><br>
And if the sign up form says "no dogs, skates, or headphones" - I show up on race day with the expectation it will be enforced. But it never is.<br><br>
I find this latest news encouraging.<br><br>
Also, if you strongly enforce no headphones in big marathons - chances are the few people a year that die from drinking too much water during the race won't even show up. Lives could be saved!!!!!
 

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Personally, I don't like headphones when I run, and during a race, I like people to leave the headphones at home. That way if I'm passing someone and say "On your left." they can hear me!<br><br>
That said, in a race like Meri's, they should probably be at the RD's discretion.
 

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I would like to see someone take my headphones from me.<br><br>
Now that would make for a good time.
 
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