Youth Summer Running Program

Youth summer running program

Damascus Freedom 5k is partnering with MMA & Sport to run a free Youth Summer Running Program starting Thursday, June 13, 2019 at 6:30 pm.

Program facts:

  • This is a free program for kids of all ages.  Kids will be evaluated at the initial sessions on 6/13 and 6/17 and appropriately grouped. Participation in at least one of these sessions is mandatory for kids that are new to the program.

  • The program will target the Damascus Freedom 5K to be held on 9/8/19 at Damascus Regional Park, however registration for this race is not a requirement.

  • It will include a challenging, age appropriate gym based kids conditioning component at MMA & Sport on Fridays that will complement the conditioning that will be gained on run days.
  • At the outset, the run sessions will be held on Mondays and Thursdays at 6:30 pm, conditioning will be on Fridays at 6:30. The first sessions on June 13 and 17 will be held at the Woodfield Elementary School track. Other sessions will be communicated after we have an idea of the number of kids and groups we are working with.

  • This program will require community support. If you are able to help out, please let me know. We can't go it alone!

  • I will ask parents on a rotating basis to supply popsicles to all the younger kids at the end of their session. Schedule TBD.

  • Each child must have a responsible adult present to sign a waiver prior to beginning their first session. Please be patient on the first day as we go through the initial waiver process. We don't want this to be time consuming

  • The overriding goal of this program is to give kids an opportunity to work and as a result of that work find something they didn't think they had. We hope they will register for the 5K, something many younger kids normally wouldn't consider possible. Of course with some work, we know it is. Confidence built through achievement is a good thing.

This program was inspired by a group of mostly 5/6 year olds who in 2013 started running a little at each baseball practice and had great and unexpected results. The first summer we learned that kids as young as four are extremely capable. TWO of the four year olds with no prior running experience ran a 5K without stopping by the end of the summer.  In our second year two of the kids that completed the 5K were three years old!  In 2015 two new four year olds trained during the summer and completed the 5K.  In 2016 two new three year olds completed the 5K.  In 2017, over 30 kids from the program completed the 5K.  We are realizing that kids can make spectacular gains. If you have any questions, please contact me at