Beginners Ultra ‘Walkshop’

Sport Walk Beginners Ultra Challenge ‘Walkshop’ – South Downs

Date:  TBC
Time: Walk departs at 9:30am sharp
Cost:  FREE!

Trail:  South Downs Way – Queen Elizabeth Country Park to Harting Down

 Queen Elizabeth Country Park, Petersfield.  Park anywhere in the Country Park and gather at the Benham’s Bushes Family BBQ6 area (on the bend of the Forest Drive access road to the upper car parks). What 3 Words location: thinnest.decoded.averts

20km approx

Who’s it for?
 This is a group walk designed for anyone taking on their first ultra challenge event.  A reasonable level of fitness is required (otherwise you wouldn’t have entered an ultra right?) but all abilities will be accommodated, with regular stops where information and advice will be given (the workshop bit). You don’t need to be able to walk at a really high pace but in order to get the most out of the walk, we’d advise being able to maintain a reasonable pace (10-12 minutes per kilometre) for this distance, as you would during your challenge event.

“Ideal for entrants of Race to the King, the South Coast Challenge or the Oxfam Trailwalker”


This Walkshop is designed specifically to assist anyone entered into an ultra challenge event or anyone who wants to walk faster, more strongly or more efficiently, either during a challenge or in general.

This walk will use the South Downs Way and therefore is ideal for entrants of Race to the King, the South Coast Challenge or the Oxfam Trailwalker.

The walk will be approximately 20km in length, an ideal training session for ‘Race to the King’ or a similar event. Walking will be in a group hosted by Sport Walk’s founder – Roger Burlinson, who will share his experience and give advice and encouragement to walkers to help them adapt and improve their walking efficiency.

Roger finishing Race to the Stones in under 16 hours in 2017
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Roger at the start of his South Downs Way non-stop walk in 2019

Roger walked Race to the Stones non-stop in 15 hours 57 minutes in 2017 and in 2019 walked the full South Downs Way (100 miles) non-stop in 27 hours 56 minutes. He set up Sport Walk in 2016, specifically to help walkers taking on challenge events and he’s developed an approach to walking trails fast that anyone can adopt, regardless of their ability.

The walk itself will follow the South Downs Way east from Queen Elizabeth Country Park to Harting Down. Outbound, there will be regular stops where Roger will give advice on walking more efficiently, on nutrition, hydration and on equipment to use. There will be another break at the turn around point and then on the return leg, walkers will be coached to walk back at their optimum pace and to implement some of the adaptations they’ve learned. There will be a final open Q&A at the end and follow up information given.

This Walkshop is expected to take up to 4-5 hours in total and walkers unable to complete 20km comfortably within this time are advised that this session may not be suitable for them. Participants will need to bring food and drink to sustain themselves during the session (guidance on this and also what to wear/bring will be posted on the Facebook event page).

How to attend
Attendance will be restricted to twenty people, so that advice and support can be given to as many as possible. Attendance will be administered through a Facebook Event page, which will go live when the final date is set.

Please note, this is NOT a ‘guided’ or ‘led’ walk. Anyone attending is entirely responsible for their own safety, wellbeing and state of health. They must also be able to navigate using trail way markers. This group walk is designed purely as an opportunity to walk with and learn from an experienced Sport Walker. The walk will stay on the South Downs Way at all times, meaning that if anyone needs or wishes to return to the start before the end of the walk, they only need follow the way mark signs and retrace their steps.