Running is a popular sport for fitness and fun in pedestrian friendly cities, such as London. With many parks, trails and sidewalks available for convenient running any day of the week, running is a great way to stay active and get in shape.
Totally Sporty researched the top running clubs to provide avid runners a new way to participate in their sport. The following running clubs are ranked based on their running features, such as routes, training, coaching and event opportunities.
Most active—Mornington Chasers
With more than 250 members, the Mornington Chasers meet regularly for training sessions, track runs, technique improvement sessions, and yoga classes specifically for running.
Weekly runs are attended on average by 40 members. On Tuesdays, the Mornington Chasers organise about six groups to run in Regent’s Park, Hampstead Heath and other areas. Thursdays focus on structured training using variances in hills and track. Sundays are reserved for longer runs (at least two hours) for endurance training.
Most welcoming and friendly—Barnes Running Club
A 90-member club in southwest London, Barnes Running Club offers a warm and inviting atmosphere with its small size to potential members and individuals new to the running scene. With organised club runs on Sunday mornings and Tuesday and Thursday nights, there are plenty of opportunities to meet new people while running together.
Most members—Serpentine Running Club
At 2,296 members, the Serpentine Running Club is the largest organised running club in London. The club competes in cross country events in the winter, track-and-field events in the spring and summer, and road racing year-around.
Most diversity—Serpentine Running Club
Because of the club’s location in central London, Serpentine often welcomes guest participants from overseas. Members vary in age from 20-somethings to beyond the age of 80.
Oldest/Best history—South London Harriers
Founded in 1871, the South London Harriers are one of the four oldest athletic clubs in the United Kingdom. The South London Harriers offer coaching through Crystal Palace National Sports Centre, and members of varying ages compete in events in every running discipline.
Best scenery—London Heathside
Members of London Heathside regularly run together at venues in Haringey, Camden, Islington and Hackney, which offer stunning views of Hampstead Heath’s historical park and established woodlands. London Heathside runners regularly compete in cross country, road racing and track-and-field events depending on the season.
The club meets every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday for group runs while coaching sessions offered throughout the week. Specific coaching opportunities include multi-distance coaching, 800m, 1,500m, 10K and hill training.
Best training routes—Belgrave Harriers
Members of Belgrave Harriers compete in road racing, road relays, track-and-field and cross country events. To train for these competitions, they run at various locations in London, including Battersea Park, Crystal Palace, Wimbledon Park, and Kingsmeadow.