What is Canicross?
Canicross is essentially the madness of attaching oneself to ones dog and going charging off across the countryside through mud and over hills!
It started off as a training exercise in mainland Europe as a way to keep sled dogs fit over the summer, and has now grown into a recognised sports of its own - particularly booming within the UK.
Whilst many of the top runners and dogs can run sub 4 minute miles, the reality of it is that most of us go along at a more sedate pace! Any runner and dog can take part, as long as the dog is 12 months or over to ensure that he/she has developed properly and so to avoid causing long term damage.
So how does it work?
The runner wears a running belt, the dog wears a special running harness, and the two are attached with a bungee line. The idea is that the dog runs in front of the human, pulling the human along, and therefore increasing overall running speed. It's great fun! Wearing the correct kit is vitally important for both you and your dog. Take a look at K9 Trail Times website on what kit you need to get started.
What is Bikejor?
Bikejor is for the more adventurous, or for those who like life at a faster pace! This involves attaching the dog to the front of your bicycle and pedalling as fast as you can to keep up! Many people like to give bikejor a try when they and their dogs are used to canicross and have mastered directions and commands. Again, it is lots of fun!
What is Scooter?
For those who enjoy an even more thrilling adventure Scooter is the place to be. This involve a special scooter designed for dogs, where your dog(s) are attached to the front of the scooter. Your dog pulls infront whilst you kick through and work on keeping your balance! Helmets are compulsary with full face helmets and body armour recommended.
All these sports create a very special bond between you and your dog, as you both need to trust each other and work as a team.
Fancy giving it a go?
There are canicross specific events that take place all over the country and abroad; as well as human running events who accept canicross entries. If racing sounds too scary at the moment, then social/training runs are set up by most Canicross clubs.
So if you would like to give it a go or just find out a bit more, then join our Facebook page. We would love to have you join us on one of our runs! Don't worry about any special kit, as we will be able to provide it for you first few runs and point you in the right direction as to what kit will be best for you and your dog.
Who can take part?
Anyone can take part!
There are no age restrictions for training runs, but most organised events will impose restrictions for certain distances or classes. Care should be taken to ensure you are aware of the proposed distance of a run before taking part, but we welcome any age and ability and never leave anybody behind!
For our race events we split Canicross age groups to:
For our races Bikejor and Scooter age groups are split into:
Please note dogs must be over the following ages to compete at our races:
Canicross - 12 months
Short Course Wheels - 16 months
Long Course Wheels - 18 months