Boston Marathon Association – Developing Inclusivity.

The Boston Marathon Association (BMA) will facilitate inclusivity of their events to enable Athletes with Disabilities (AWD) to take part. This will be phased in over a 2-3 year period, to enable the association to become fully experienced and compliant in a safe and secure manner.

The risk assessment has identified four broad categories of AWD participants, namely Ambulant, Push Rim Wheel Chair, Hand Cycle and Duo Teams. 

In the first year (2019) Ambulant AWD, wanting to run either solo or with authorised Guide in the 2019 Boston Marathon or Half Marathon are invited to apply.

In future years the categories will be expanded to include Push-rim Wheelchair, Hand-cycle, and Duo Teams.

AWD Participation Categories

  1. Ambulatory AWD: 

To be accepted for entry, applicants must be able to propel themselves through the entire course. They may be authorised to be accompanied by a Human Guide, whose role is to provide orientation and navigation support to a blind or visually impaired athlete, or other ambulatory athlete with a disability who requires additional support, on the event course. Guides are not scored and will not receive an official finishing time. There is no entry fee for a Guide.


  1.  Push-rim Wheelchairs AWD:

A push-rim wheelchair is a racing wheelchair and is the only type of wheelchair permitted on the Boston Marathon course. For safety reasons, athletes may not participate using a day chair or other non-racing wheelchair. 

To be accepted for entry, applicants planning to use a push-rim wheelchair must be able to propel themselves through the entire course. An Official Guide is permitted to accompany an AWD participant on the course, but the guide may not push or pull the AWD participant. 

Please note: All wheelchair entrants must wear helmets at all times while on the course. Athletes not wearing helmets will NOT be allowed to start the race and are subject to removal from the course.


  1. Hand-cycle and Duo Teams. The definitions and specification to be drawn up following 2020 events



Guide Selection

  1. An AWD who requires support to participate in 2021 Boston (UK) Marathon event is permitted to run with one (1) Guide.

  2. It is the athlete's responsibility to select a Guide who can perform all Guide responsibilities at the athlete's goal pace.

  3. It is strongly recommended that an athlete selects a Guide with whom he/she regularly trains. 

  4. In limited situations, an athlete may be permitted to register two (2) Guides, who run in relay fashion, where the athlete is accompanied by one (1) Guide at a time on the event course. If two (2) Guides are used, the exchange must take place at nominated Exchange Stations located at the half way point of the event course (Half or Full Marathon).  

  5. If an athlete’s disability necessitates more than one (1) Guide, the athlete may email the explanation, including specific details about each Guide’s role on race day, to

Guide Registration Procedures

  1. This is the process to follow for an athlete who requires a Guide to participate in the 2023 Boston (UK) Marathon events. To register a Guide, the athlete must e-mail the request to with the following information.

  • The nature of the athlete’s disability,

  • An explanation as to why the athlete needs a Guide,

  • The first and last name of the Guide, and email address

  • The Guide must be copied on the email sent to 

  • The deadline for submitting a request to register a Guide is 19th March 2023  BMA will send an invitation to register directly to the Guide. The deadline for the Guide to complete the registration process is 31st March 2023


  1. It is the athlete's responsibility to email the Guide registration request to 


  1. Should the athlete select a registered runner to serve as his/her Guide, the athlete must still follow the Guide registration process described above and the Guide will be assigned the appropriate Guide race bib.