Your 2nd choice of sport (+/- 30 y.)
Choose for sportive walking


In our contemporary times, the young generations can dream acquiring fame and wealth through sport. Just think of the salary of famous footballers such as Messi, Ronaldo, De Bruyne… or at the attractive contracts of top cyclists as Pogacar, Boonen, Sagan, Evenepoel.

To realize this dream, perhaps imaginary, the future young athlete will have to be exceptionally talented and dispose of a lot of willpower and perseverance to reach the top of the pyramid in his domain.
And this – gaining access and belonging to the elite of top athletes – is only reserved for a few.
After all, top performances are the result of innate talent, passion and hard work. If you can link those qualities to a certain goal, then you can surpass yourself. 

Sports switch

Sporty people who reach the age limit of 30 years can consider the transition to a new practice of sport and choose a sport that suits them well.

A sport that can guarantee new challenges for sporty people and assure them fitness and a good condition after the sports switch at +/- 30 year, is sportive walking and/or race walking. 

Sportive walking

Sportive walking – sometimes also mentioned power walking – is in every way, a challenge for sporty people to push back their own limits and thus to surpass themselves.

Why choose for sportive walking ?

♦ sportive walking is an ideal outdoor sport for the building and the conservation of a good physical condition; 
♦ it has a favorable and beneficial effect on the mental and physical health and thus guarantees a better quality of life;
♦ it is an efficient training for the strengthening of the mental power: it increases the self-confidence, it leads to inner calm and lucidity of mind, it stimulates the concentration, it develops the mental capacity and finally, it improves the resistance towards stress and reverses;   
♦ sportive walking creates a particularly pleasant feeling of fitness and self-satisfaction through intensive effort;
♦ it is not a risky sport: there are no injuries by direct contact with the opponent and there is no danger of heavy falls;
♦ sportive walking is the best natural solution for the prevention of illnesses and in particular for respiratory diseases;
♦ sportive walking is compatible with other sports: running, football, tennis, fitness, swimming, mountaineering…

How do you get started with sportive walking ?

The platform to start sportive walking: Belgian Trails

ExtraTrail ► the network of permanently signposted Trail-Nature trails in Wallonia (B)

Thanks to the network's solid infrastructure, the sportsman/ woman can cover the entire carefully signposted trails safely.   

ExtraTrail consists of 28 signposted Trail-Nature trails that form a network of more than 750 km of paths and quiet roads through the beautiful Ardennes in Belgium.  

Further information about ExtraTrail can be consulted via the following link: 

Flanders Trails ► the platform of the Flemish Walking Federation for an overview of the organized Trail-Nature trails in Flanders (B).  
The platform, composed of 8 beautiful off-road long distance tours (35 – 50 km) that you can cover at your own pace, can serve to realize your groundbreaking challenges and goals during your 2nd sports career.

Further information about Flanders Trails can be consulted via the following link: (= a Dutch-language site)

Race walking

Part of athletics

Race walking is a part of athletics and is also an Olympic discipline. The Olympic distances for men and women are the 20 km and the new mixed relay marathon race walk  that will be organized for the 1st time at the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris, the French capital.
The relay marathon race walk replaces the 50 km Race walk for men. This iconic discipline was already on the program of the Olympic Games in 1932.     
"Dying in the last 15 kilometers of the 50 km race walk" will therefore no longer be possible in the future because the International Olympic Committee, abbreviated IOC, has removed the number from the list of Olympic sports.
According to the IOC's new values, there should be full gender equalit from the Paris Olympics in 2024. 
Because there is no equivalent for women for the "Race walk 50 km" athletic event, the IOC has therefore decided to remove the number. Furthermore, the IOC is convinced that the new number will be an exciting competition and consequently will be interesting for the fans. 

Mixed relay marathon race walk

The new mixed relay marathon race walk will consist of a minimum of 25 teams. Each team is composed of one male and one female athlete who will alternate to cover the marathon distance (= 42,195 km) in 4 stages.  

Race walking competitions  << long distance >>

Well-known exampels of race walking are the Centurion in England, the Continental Centurion in the Netherlands and the qualifying competitions "200 km / 24 hour" for Paris-Alsace, formerly Paris-Colmar, in France. 

It puts the sportsmen in the picture and it enhances a qualitative image to the walking sport in general.

You are young and you are looking for a healthy and a sportive challenge: then choose the challenge of race walking “long distance” ! 

Overview of the sites concerned in the domain of athletics


Paris Alsace • Crédit Mutuel ► The longest Race walk competition in the world / The Myth from A to Z / The qualifying competitions 200 km / 24H in France

URL site Paris-Alsace: 


UK Centurions1911:

The Netherlands

Continental Centurion Association: 

Actions for the promotion of sportive walking


By the aura of race walk competitions << long distance >>, numerous walkers of the old generation regret not having discovered the race walking sport sooner because they missed the opportunity to participate in the Centurion 100 mile in England and the qualifying competitions over 200 km / 24H in France.  


Actions to reach the target group could be launched in consultation with the walking federation, which is a privileged interlocutor on a statutory basis. The goal is to inform young people at the age of the sports switch (+/- 30 years) about the broad spectrum of competitive and non-competitive walking. 

The complementarity of the common objectives, described in the statutes of both associations, and which are situated in the sphere of:

♦ advantages (physical/ mental)
♦ image
♦ challenges  
♦ choice of sport
♦ promotion (competitive / non-competitive)

constitutes a good basis to consider a certain form of collaboration between the authorities involved (walking federations / governmental actors) and the BWA. 

Determination of the form of collaboration

a. definition of the organizations reaching the target group at the age of +/- 30 year: sports clubs / youth associations / health insurance funds…;  
b. establishing contact ► drawing up of a contact letter;
c. offering a well-tended online platform for a good outgoing communication to the target group and the press;
d. creating a link between the sites of the involved authorities (walking federations / Adeps) and the sportsite BWA;
e. integration of the race walking calendar << long distance >> in the Walking;
f. publication of remarkable achievements of talented (race)walkers as propaganda means to create a strong image of the walking sport to the youth. 

Statement BWA

“If the walking sport had not existed, then it would have had to be invented !” 

Theo Bické
Belgian Walking Association, abbreviated BWA