Boston Marathon Association –Inclusivity Policy - AWD.
The Boston Marathon Association (BMA) facilitates inclusivity
at their events to enable Athletes with Disabilities (AWD) to
take part. This was phased in over a 3 year period, to enable
the association to become fully experienced and compliant in a
safe and secure manner. It is now fully available.
There are four broad categories of AWD participants, namely
Ambulant, Push Rim Wheel Chair, Hand Cycle and Duo
AWD in any of the categories, wanting to run either solo or with
authorised Guide in the Boston Marathon or Half Marathon are
invited to apply. They may also enter the 10Km run or the 5km
AWD Participation Categories
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. As the
roads are not closed it is advised that deaf runners can benefit
from such support. Guides are not scored and will not receive
an official finishing time. There is no entry fee for a Guide.
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.
A hand-cycle is similar to a racing wheelchair but propelled by
‘pedals’ using the upper limbs alone. Only hand-cycles suitable
for road racing are permitted on the Boston Marathon course.
For safety reasons, athletes may not participate using any other
type of hand-cycle.
To be accepted for entry, applicants planning to use a hand-
cycle 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.
A Duo Team is comprised of a runner pushing a non-
ambulatory person with a permanent physical impairment in a
customized racing wheelchair. Both the duo runner and duo
rider must comply with the age requirement for the event. The
duo rider must be non-ambulatory and possess a permanent
physical impairment that aligns with the eligible impairment
types defined by World Para Athletics. The duo rider must
provide impairment documentation at time of registration or
have documentation on file with the B.A.A.
1. An AWD who requires support to participate in Boston
(UK) Marathon event is permitted to run with one (1)
2. It is the athlete's responsibility to select a Guide who can
perform all Guide responsibilities at the athlete's goal
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,
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 email@example.com with the following
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
The deadline for submitting a request to register a Guide
is 21st 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
It is the athlete's responsibility to email the Guide registration
request to firstname.lastname@example.org
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.
Reviewed and Revised March 2023