What is Inward Bound?

Inward Bound is a unique adventure footrace, challenging the physical and emotional endurance of participants and providing safe and exciting opportunity to explore the Australian wildnerness.

Based on World War 2 survivalist training intended for downed pilots, the event starts with teams of four being disoriented and transported blindfolded to a remote location in the Canberra area. After disembarking their buses, the teams, generally in the middle of the night, use simple map-and-compass navigation techniques to quickly determine their location before running 30 km to 100 km to a given location, racing against other teams.

Limited exclusively to students of the Australian National University and the Australian Defence Force Academy, participants will rely extensively on the support and camaraderie of their teammates in order to overcome the various challenges that the course will force them to face.

Leadership, navigation and survival skills are just some of those which participants will acquire and months of rigorous pre-event training necessary to compete promotes a fit and healthy lifestyle (which, for most, will continue, long after they cross the finishing line).

With 53 annual races having been held to date, thousands of young people regard Inward Bound as a memorable and life-changing part of their experience of Canberra and Australia.

Race Organisers regard safety as paramount and teams must carry various items of mandatory safety gear, including medical supplies and emergency communication devices which allow them to contact the Race HQ if they require assistance.

The generous permission of landholders to allow runners to follow tracks/trails on their land ensures that participants are rewarded with breathtaking scenery and challenging route choices.

We take our responsibilities as organisers seriously and seek to ensure that all appropriate land permissions are ascertained and “leave no trace” principles are followed by all participants and event staff.

Inward Bound is sanctioned by the ANU Interhall Sport Organisation on behalf of the Australian National University and ANU Sport.