Local clubs in Greater Manchester have launched a series of four short films called ‘Get Out & Go’. Available now at https://gmoa.org.uk/how-to-videos/, the films show how families, runners and walkers can enjoy learning the adventure sport of orienteering and improve their map reading skills using permanent orienteering courses. It’s a great way to discover something different.
Manchester is fortunate to have permanent orienteering courses set up in over 60 parks and green spaces across its metropolitan boroughs and neighbouring areas. These courses are fun to do and no special equipment is needed to start except a specially drawn map. Anyone looking for something new in lock down that works within Covid restrictions can have a go. It is very easy to do as no equipment is shared, the courses are all outside and it is easy to keep a social distance.
Made in Manchester parks thanks to a grant from Sport England, the four short films in the ‘Get Out & Go’ series ─ Getting Started, Getting Going, Getting Confident and Getting Faster ─ will enable anyone to try orienteering and quickly progress from the easiest level.
- Getting Started gives information on orienteering maps, useful symbols to note, how courses are drawn, and what to look for at checkpoints or controls. It also shows how to line up the map with features nearby, a key skill to help the novice orienteer set off in the right direction.
- Getting Going covers more detail on the map, shows how to use a compass, simple route choices, how to use features other than paths as handrails, and when to cut corners.
- Getting Confident gives tips on techniques that help build more confidence in navigational decisions. These include learning to take a sure route into a checkpoint, finding a safety net if you overshoot and using control descriptions to visualise the checkpoint.
- Getting Faster demonstrates where to plan ahead, where to speed up and slow down and gives some tips on reading the map on the run.
By following this series and making use of permanent courses in the local area, the clubs hopes that beginners will be able to develop both the confidence and experience to try tackling a course at a club event in future.
This initiative has been led by Manchester & District Orienteering Club (MDOC) together with its partner organisation Greater Manchester Orienteering Activities (GMOA),