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Age-Grading

Performance scores that take account of age and sex.

A motivational way of comparing your own and other runners' performances.

What is Age-Grading

Age-Grading scores a runner's performance making allowances for their age and sex using data collated by World Masters Athletics, the governing body for track and field, long distance running and race walking for veteran athletes. Percentage scores are calculated by comparing your own times with those set by World Record runners, adjusted to reflect changes in performance levels across different ages and genders.

 

Why is Age-Grading beneficial?

Motivation - As we get older it is reasonable to expect that we won't be able to run at the speeds we achieved when we were young. This can be demotivating for runners who are 'past their peak' even if they are running well for their age. So, rather than focusing solely on how fast you are running, it can be more motivating to focus on your Age-Graded performance.

Comparing with other Runners - By factoring out age and sex it is possible for two different runners to compare their performance for the same run on even terms, enabling people to compete with each other regardless of age and sex. You will often find that Running Clubs talk a lot about Age-Grading as it provides a way for Club Members to compare their race performances, irrespective of how old they are.

Long-Term Performance Tracking - Factoring out age enables you to see how good your performance is at any time given expected norms for your age. Using this you can track how your performance has changed over the long-term.

Predicting Race Times - You can use you current Age-Graded percentage as a method of predicting finish times for races.

 

How good is my Age-Graded percentage?

As your score is a comparison with World Record times don't be dissapointed if it is a long way from 100%. As a general guide, if your percentage comes out as 90% or above then either your watch has stopped or you can count yourself as World Class! Over 80% is typically National Class, over 70% is Regional Class and over 60% is Local Class. However, the largest proportion of people generally fall between 50% and 60%. But don't be distracted by this - you will gain most motivation from setting achievable targets and trying to improve your own score.