In 2018, the Chinese marathon industry is still rushing on the “highway”. According to the statistics of the Chinese Athletic Association(CAA), there are more than 1,300 cross-country races with more than 800 participants in the whole year, and the number of participants is close to 6 million. From the registration of events in 2010, there were only 13 games. In just 8 years, the number of Chinese marathons has increased by 100 times.
It is undeniable that under the background of the “healthy China” national strategy, the national health consciousness is awaking, the sports industry is growing like a launching rocket, and the blowout of the marathon is also reasonable. However, while the number of events is growing rapidly, the marathon culture is lacking, the event organization, The unsynchronized operation and management capabilities have hindered the healthy development of the marathon industry. While the marathon is growing like unstoppable Hulk, all kinds of chaos are more “sharp”.
In the past November, in a marathon event, the volunteers handed the national flag to the contestants near finish-line, which might causing a Chinese player to lose the championship. The organizers said, “The image of‘The Chinese player’ covered with the national flag crossing the finish line will be extremely shocking.” The unprofessional of the marathon event organizers is exposed to the fullest. Shocking, isn’t it? Although the CAA said that any activities and ceremonies should not affect the normal conduct of the game, the organizers of the series still go their own way in the subsequent competitions and once again handed the national flag to the athletes, seemed as a terrible tradition. What is the reason for the organizers to be so “willful” and “blind” to the requirements of the CAA, I am afraid it is not just a simple reason for the “extremely shocking”. In addition, problems such as insufficient replenishment, overdue supplies, unreasonable track settings, and chaotic organization are not uncommon today. This highlights the loopholes in Chinese marathon events management and organization.
At the same time, many people blindly entered “the marathon tide” for “honor”. In the Shenzhen Nanshan Half Marathon in the past November, the number of violations reached 258. In addition to the bad behaviors such as falsifying the runner ID and running for others, some runners also “create shortcut” in the competition track. In the Shaoxing Marathon, one player was twice fainted. After being rescued by medical staff, he was still stubbornly required to continue his game, who then was forcibly stopped by the doctor and sent to the hospital. In Kunming Jinning Marathon, a half marathon runner died at 19 kilometers. And It is not a case that the over-district started runners to be disqualified.
The marathon has deviated from the original intention in the eyes of some people and has become a “Wow”material in the friends talkshow. As Yu Hongchen, director of the Athletics Management Center, said, “The marathon sport has led to a new fashion for the whole nation, but if it’s because of ‘fashion’, it will disregard the fairness and rigor of the game. It’s unfair to those who take the marathon seriously but can’t get a ticket in.” Furthermore, it will damage the original intention of the marathon to pursue health and challenge ourselves in the public mind.
Running seems simple, but 42.195 kilometers is not easy for everyone to complete, and every marathon is a challenge to the limits of self. The threshold for the marathon race seems to be very low today, but it is precisely the most rigorous test of the organization and coordination of the event. Each marathon is a test of a city’s hardware and software. As a sport that has a long history of human sports development, the marathon still maintains its vitality to this day, relying on the awe of all participants in the game. For the Chinese marathon, both the contestants and the organizers should keep patient, awe, and respect to let the fire of the marathon that just burst out in China burn for a long time and light our future.