sack racing

Quick Reference

A traditional form of racing at fairs and on sports days, in which the contestant races in a sack, often jumping to make the most effective progress. Joseph Strutt's Sports and Pastimes of the People of England (1801) identified sack running as a popular rustic pastime: ‘that is, men tied up in sacks, every part of them being enclosed except their heads’, and racing over a set distance. Sack racing has long been seen as a harmless and enjoyable family game, and a fun item for young children at schools. In July 2008, though, at the John F. Kennedy School in Washington, north-east England, the activity (along with the three-legged race) was banned from the school sports day, on safety grounds.

Subjects: Sport and Leisure.

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