Krieger J & Henning A (2020) Who Governs a Movement? The IAAF and Road Running - Historical and Contemporary Considerations. Journal of Sport History, 47 (1), pp. 59-75. https://doi.org/10.1353/sph.2020.0003
During the 1970s and the 1980s, road running experienced an extraordinary growth in terms of participants and running events. Even though the runners mainly participated for reasons of wellbeing and fitness, and less for competition, the world governing body of athletics, the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), attempted to govern and profit of the running movement from the end of the 1970s onwards. This paper utilizes previously unexamined historical sources such as IAAF Council and Commission minutes to analyze the IAAF´s approach to road running movement against the background of elite sport’s increasing commercialization and professionalization at the end of the amateur era. It will be demonstrated that the Federation did not understand road running on its own terms as a mass health and fitness movement but approached it as if it was a track and field discipline. These misunderstandings led to friction with many road running stakeholder groups.
Road Running; International Association of Athletics Federations; Association of International Marathons; Running Boom;
Journal of Sport History: Volume 47, Issue 1