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Obstacle Races: An Introduction

With popular races combining for several million Facebook fans and thousands of Twitter followers, the answer is clear: obstacle course races are drawing us in. Races like the Tough Mudder, Warrior Dash, and Spartan Race matter to us.

Just how popular have obstacle course races and similar challenges have become? In a single year, more than two million participants signed up for the Tough Mudder, Spartan Race, and Warrior Dash, alone. In 2015, nearly five million participated in obstacle course races in the U.S., according to Obstacle Race World: The State of the Mud Run Business.

At its peak, the Warrior Dash attracted up to 14,000 contestants for each weekend/two-day event. The Spartan Race caps their races at 4,000 participants per day, resulting in a potential of 8,000 per weekend.

The success of these three brands have spurred on other obstacle course races and challenges:

Click here for a list of obstacle races.

For more on obstacle course racing:

  • Training: workouts and conditioning tips for your first (or next) race
  • Fitnessguides for running, flexibility, and core
  • Research: analysis and insights on the business of OCRs



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