Get Inspired: How to get into orienteering

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Mike Bushell tries out orienteering

How do I start?

British Orienteering can help you find a club nearby. You can also learn more from Scottish Orienteering, the Welsh Orienteering Association, and the NI Orienteering Association.

What is orienteering?

Finding your way from one point to another, using only a map, a compass and your brain, the winner is the person who reaches the end first.

Is it for me?

If you like a mental challenge with your exercise then you'll love orienteering - there are trails all over the UK and you only need comfortable shoes and outdoor clothing to get started.

What to expect when I start?

  • TrailO is a form of orienteering for people of all levels of physical ability, including wheelchair users.
  • Geocaching is like a high-tech treasure hunt where you use a GPS to find a small waterproof box (geocache) hidden outdoors.
  • It doesn't matter how young, old or fit you are, as you can run, walk or jog the course and progress at your own pace.
  • If you'd like to have a go at something more fast paced and challenging then try Urban, Ski or Mountain Bike orienteering.
  • British Orienteering and Sport England run family-friendly Xplorer events in local parks, which are aimed at primary and pre-school children and their families.

Are you inspired to try orienteering? Or maybe you are a keen enthusiast already? Get in touch and tell us your experience of the activity by tweeting us on @bbcgetinspired, visiting us on Facebook or email us on

All clubs need a chair, secretary and treasurer to help things run smoothly as well as officials, coaches and judges. Whatever role you're interested in, Join In has opportunities to volunteer in your area.