How to protect yourself while running

Running is a fun activity that benefits the mind and the body. When you jog, run or walk remember and practice some simple safety precautions.

Avoid running at night if possible. Your ability to avoid danger and vulnerability to traffic accidents is increased after the sun goes down.

Always carry identification or write your name, telephone number and blood type on the inside of your running shoe. Include any medical information.

Always run with a partner.

Carry money for a telephone call.

Run in familiar areas.

Always remain aware of your surroundings. Stay alert. The more aware you are the less vulnerable you become.

Act with certainty; be confident. Most criminals select a victim who acts timid, frightened or unsure.

Avoid unpopulated areas, deserted, dark streets and over grown trails. Run clear of parked cars and bushes.

Don’t wear headsets. Use your ears to be more aware of your surroundings.

Avoid verbal harassment. Use discretion in acknowledging strangers. Look directly at others and be observant.

Wear reflective materials when running at night. The ability of others to see you at night is directly related to the amount of reflective and light color material you wear.

Trust your feelings. If an area feels bad or a person makes you uneasy, listen to your feelings and get away.

Carry a whistle or noisemaker. If you are harassed or bothered use the noisemaker to attract attention. An attacker does not want attention.

Remember that safety precautions should be used at all times. If something should happen to you use your head, stay calm and take care of yourself.

For further information on this or others safety topics please contact the University of Florida Police Department’s Community Services Division at 392-1409.