Proper Etiquette For Passing A Runner During A Race

What is the best thing to do when you're passing another runner during a race? Our etiquette expert shares what you should do.


Etiquette expert Lizzie Post, great-great granddaughter of Emily Post, knows a thing or two about the rules of the road—and the descendant of the famous decorum diva is a runner too!

Q: What’s the best thing to say if you pass another runner during a race?

I’m a fan of saying nothing. In a race, runners expect people to be changing places and paces. You’re definitely not going to say anything like, “Better luck next time!” or “See you at the finish.”

But some runners might not appreciate hearing anything from someone who is beating them—even if it’s something encouraging like, “Keep going!” or “You’re doing great!”

I find it’s best to let people be in their own zone. So aside from “On your left” if you feel it’s necessary, I would suggest you save your breath and just keep on running.