Race Walking Association

The Race Walking Association (RWA) is the major competition provider for the event of race walking in England, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands answerable to England Athletics. It was founded in 1907 as the Road Walking Association, and permitted to organise National Road Walking Championships. Some emphasis is placed on the development of future athletes, and the promotion of walking as a discipline within England. It is a notionally democratic body, controlled by the elected Officers and supported by the elected General Committee.[1] Under this organisation lie three regional bodies; Southern Area RWA, Midlands Area RWA, and Northern Area RWA, each responsible for activities in their region.

Impact of the RWA

  • They make some attempt to promote and maintain popularity of the event within the United Kingdom.
  • They have twice successfully lobbied for the event not to be removed from the Olympic Games.
  • Athletes within the RWA area have won 15 Olympic medals: 6 Gold, 5 Silver, 4 Bronze.[2]
  • Athletes within the RWA area have also won 12 Commonwealth Games medals: 4 Gold, 3 Silver, 5 Bronze.
  • Athletes within the RWA area have set many world records.


The RWA has published a magazine, Race Walking Record monthly since November 1941. The magazine has a worldwide distribution and has many Olympians and major organisations amongst its subscribers. It started as a newsletter for race walkers doing military service during the Second World War, developing through many forms over the decades and currently available as a free online publication.

Major Race Walking Events in the UK

  • 50 km National Championships
  • 20 km National Championships
  • 10 km National Championships
  • Long Distance National Championships (100 mile/24 hours)
  • Younger Age Groups National Championships (U11/U13/U15/U17) 1 km-5 km
  • Junior National Championships (U20/U23) 5k-10 km
  • 10 mile National Championships
  • 30 km Masters National Championships
  • 20 km Masters National Championships
  • 5 km Masters National Championships
  • County Track and Field Championships
  • Inter Area Match (North v Midlands v South)
  • Inter County Championships
  • UK Race Walking Challenge [3]
  • Aviva 5000m National Championships and World Trials
  • Olympic Games (1908, 1948, 2012)
  • IAAF World Championships in Athletics (2017)
  • Commonwealth Games (1970, 2002, 2022)
  • World Race Walking Cup (1977, 1985)
  • European Cup (2007) [4]
  • Parish Walk[5]