Organizing an OCR Race like Tough Viking

Tough Viking ramp

Image: Tough Viking

Organizing an obstacle course race (OCR) is hard work!  Tough Viking, one of the world’s premier OCR races, offers valuable insights into what it takes to create a successful and unforgettable race experience. In this article, we explore the lessons we can learn from Tough Viking and apply them to organizing an OCR race that excites and challenges participants.

Meticulous Course Design

Tough Viking’s success lies in its carefully designed race courses that blend natural terrain with creatively crafted obstacles. When organizing an OCR race, take the time to scout and utilize captivating locations that complement the obstacles. Strive for a balance between physical challenges, mental stimulation, and the incorporation of scenic beauty to enhance the overall race experience.

Innovative and Varied Obstacles

Tough Viking continuously pushes the boundaries of obstacle design, introducing innovative and challenging elements. To create a memorable OCR race, incorporate a diverse range of obstacles that test participants’ strength, agility, problem-solving skills, and teamwork. Strive for a combination of traditional and unique obstacles to keep participants engaged and excited.

Safety as a Priority

Safety is paramount when organizing an OCR race. Tough Viking adheres to strict safety protocols, ensuring participants’ well-being throughout the event. Develop comprehensive safety plans, conduct thorough risk assessments, and provide qualified personnel at various points along the course. Regularly inspect and maintain the obstacles to ensure they meet safety standards.

Effective Communication

Clear communication is key to organizing a successful OCR race. Tough Viking excels at providing participants with pre-race information, including course details, obstacle descriptions, and safety guidelines. Establish an efficient communication strategy, using multiple channels such as emails, websites, and social media to keep participants informed before, during, and after the race. Tough Viking are also brilliant at using social media to create hype and keep everyone informed about the next events! Check out Tough Vikings IG account for inspiration! 

Volunteer and Staff Management

Tough Viking relies on a dedicated team of volunteers and staff members to run the event smoothly. When organizing an OCR race, recruit and train a capable team that understands the race’s vision and values. Clearly define roles and responsibilities, and ensure proper support, communication, and motivation for all volunteers and staff members. Make sure to give volunteers an incentive to help out! Click here for tips on where to find volunteers and how to motivate them to join your race.

Participant Engagement and Experience

Tough Viking excels at creating a captivating race atmosphere that engages participants from start to finish. Even Tough Viking kids get to start their race with a fire! To enhance participant experience, consider adding entertainment, live music, food vendors, and interactive spectator areas. Foster a supportive and inclusive environment that encourages camaraderie and teamwork among participants.

Timing and Results Management

Accurate timing and prompt results management are crucial to the success of an OCR race. Tough Viking employs professional Chip timing which ensures timely and accurate result announcements. Partner with experienced timing and results management companies to maintain efficiency and provide participants with a seamless race experience. Read more about chip timing here. 

Post-Race Engagement

Tough Viking recognizes the importance of post-race engagement with participants. Organize post-race celebrations, awards ceremonies, and opportunities for participants to share their experiences. Encourage feedback and suggestions to improve future events, and maintain an active online presence to keep participants connected and engaged throughout the year.


Organizing an OCR race is a complex endeavor that requires meticulous planning, attention to detail, and a deep understanding of participant expectations. Tough Viking sets a high standard with its well-designed courses, innovative obstacles, and focus on safety and participant experience. By incorporating lessons learned from Tough Viking, race organizers can create an OCR event that captivates participants, challenges their limits, and leaves them with unforgettable memories of conquering obstacles and forging lasting connections.