Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Double bubble

It has been a while since I wrote (harped on) about the parkrun doubling effect, so now must be about time.

On a few occasions in the past on this blog I have written about how parkrun seems to roughly double in size (based on various criteria) every year. Well there is good recent evidence that this growth rate is still continuing.

Roughly 9 months ago I wrote a blog post about "parkrun world domination in your lifetime". Have a quick read of that post if you have the time, as it does show that expecting parkrun to keep doubling in size forever is simply not possible  (just like story of the grains of wheat on a cheeseboard did for some king whom I can't remember the name of). This growth cannot go on forever, that is unless someone uses parkrun to spread friendships beyond this planet.

I have had a quick look at recent attendances, and the equivalent date last year, and have found that for this period of the year at least attendances are still doubling in attendance numbers.

2012 2013
Date Attendance Date Attendance Growth
18th August 21,877 17th August 42,694 95%
25th August 20,113 24th August 39,042 94%
1st September 21,187 31st August 44,351 109%
8th September 24,408 7th September 44,226 82%

Firstly, of course, I must say that this is a very small sample to base statistics on. And secondly, it demonstrates that there is significant fluctuation in the figures each week of each year.

However, it certainly shows that, give or take some fluctuation, the number of people running a parkrun each week this year (over the last 4 parkrundays at least) is pretty much double the number of last year.

To make this coming parkrunday double up on the same weekend last year we need to get 47,034 of us to complete a parkrun. Let's see if we can manage that!


  1. Loving the stats.
    Have you any views of saturation level? ie the number of parkruns in an area.
    Is London anywhere near its limit?
    Obviously NW Scotland suffers from too few large population concentrations.
    Perhaps 1 parkrun 100,000 like MP's (650) , I think not. We are near that in Sheffield (5)with no sign of numbers evening out.

    1. Saturation point is an interesting one. I think I'll have to give that some thought and then maybe write a post or two about it. You would think that major cities could handle a few and that every small town could have one one day. Having a suitable venue may be one limiting factor.

      Sheffield is certainly doing very well. Interesting to hear that you think it will still continue to grow there.


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