RIYADH: The Saudi Ministry of Sports has launched the Home Run competition that aims to engage a large portion of society in activities to enhance health and physical wellbeing.
The competition comes at a time when people’s physical activity has been restricted amid the lockdown imposed by the Kingdom as a preventive measure to limit the spread of the coronavirus disease, COVID-19.
The competition, which will run until May 28, involves all contests from full and half marathons to sprint competitions.
Registered participants will be able to link their personal profiles with their Strave or Fitbit accounts through the website www.ksahomerun.inphota.com in order to input the information directly from their personal tracking devices.
Winners will be rewarded with smart watches, gym subscriptions and home gym equipment.
People have been interacting with the competition across social media platforms, with some posting their daily running results, while others posted videos and pictures of themselves running at home using treadmills or in their yards.
Sara Khalid, a participant in the 10 kilometer running competition from Dammam, said she found the idea of the competition attractive. “You feel like you are in a marathon or a half marathon while you are staying at home and safe. It encourages you to move more and compete remotely. It’s professional and well organized,” she said.
Fayez Rami, a 29-year-old participant in the half marathon from Riyadh, said the competition had helped him get back a portion of his energy and fitness that he had lost during the curfew.
“I don’t have a treadmill at home, but being part of a group competing with different people from all over the Kingdom and outside the Kingdom pushes you to do your best and keeps your spirit high,” he said.
Reem Aldwaik, a graphic designer from Jeddah, said she encouraged her 12-year-old son to participate in the competition as she found the idea appealing, although she encountered some technical issues that lead to registering inaccurate results for her son’s run.
“The Ministry of Sports (should run) a separate category for kids so they don’t miss out on getting rewards,” she said.
The Minister of Sport Prince Abdul Aziz bin Turki Al-Faisal said in a tweet: “Both the Home Run and E-Gym are initiatives that (were) launched to encourage people to do different kinds of sports through digital platforms.”
Saudi sports federation launches campaigns to keep people active while on coronavirus lockdownSaudi sports federation promotes healthy homebound living
Saudi Home Run initiative aims to keep people active during lockdown