Adidas shows the absurd lengths to which women must go to feel safe while running

A new spot, ‘The Ridiculous Run,’ fronts an effort that calls for male education and allyship to create change

Published On
Mar 21, 2023
A woman runner surrounded by an escort of cars and motorcycles

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New research from Adidas suggests 92% of women feel concerned for their safety while running—a distressing data point that has inspired a new campaign to raise awareness of the issue and to create change.

The same survey found that more than half of women (51%) are afraid of being physically attacked, compared to 28% of men. Over a third (38%) of women have experienced physical or verbal harassment while—of these women, over half have received unwanted attention (56%), sexist comments or unwanted sexual attention (55%), been honked at (53%), or followed (50%).

A new spot from the brand, titled “The Ridiculous Run,” created by TBWA/Neboko in Amsterdam, shows the absurd lengths to which women might have to go—from wearing one headphone to hiring an entire protective entourage—to feel safe while out for a jog.


The spot points to, which explains the steps Adidas is taking to address the issue—from creating allyship workshops and educational toolkits for men, safe spaces for women to run and safety-focused features on the Adidas Running app (including the ability for a runner’s live location to be automatically shared with selected contacts to help track their run). 

The campaign is part of the Adidas’ ongoing With Women We Run initiative. The charity White Ribbon is a partner. Adidas’ allyship playbook, co-created with White Ribbon in 2022, has been translated into six languages and is designed to educate men on the issue. (While 62% of men surveyed recognize the issue, only 18% believe the responsibility lies most with men to help women feel safer when running.)

“Addressing this issue is a marathon, not a sprint and our campaign will not solve this overnight, but if we can encourage more men to understand their role as allies, we can create progress and, hopefully, change,” said Sina Neubrandt, global communications director for Adidas Women.

“Together with Adidas we can move one step closer to ending all forms of gender-based violence and discrimination, once and for all,” said Humberto Carolo, executive director of White Ribbon Canada. “We want all men to take action using the tools we have provided, wherever they are in the world to make a real difference to violence against women. Running is for everyone, therefore we’re committed to make sure everyone feels safer when pursuing a sport they enjoy.”