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About Us

About Sweatshop

Sweatshop was founded in 1971 by Chris Brasher, who, on 6th May 1954, became part of athletics history by helping to pace Sir Roger Bannister to the first sub four minute mile. After winning gold at the 1956 Olympics, Chris went on to be the co-founder of the now iconic London Marathon.

At Sweatshop we believe that every runner, from absolute beginner to international athlete, should have access to the very best equipment. That’s why we have the largest range of technical running shoes in the UK and train our staff to industry leading levels to help you find your perfect shoe.

Having been voted best sports retailer by readers of Runner’s World Magazine for the last seven years, it may not surprise you to learn about the great choice we offer. What may surprise you is the length we go to, to help you find your perfect pair of running shoes.

All Sweatshop full time staff undergo three levels of biomechanical training, based at Roehampton University in Surrey, examining all aspects of how our bodies move while running.

These tailor-made courses were devised by the University’s Biomechanics team and Sweatshop to give staff an in-depth knowledge of how the foot and lower leg work and which shoes are suited to individual styles of running. This places us in the ideal position to help you.

We are so confident in our staff’s ability to help you find your perfect pair of running shoes that we offer an unprecedented 30-day guarantee to give you 100% peace of mind—a service that is truly unique to Sweatshop.

Your guarantee means you can run in your new store-fitted shoes for up to 30 days and if you’re not completely satisfied we’ll exchange them for a new pair, whatever the reason. We promise.


Chris Brasher’s enthusiasm and philosophy has inspired Sweatshop to believe that running is a force for good. That’s why we encourage all of our customers to run and that’s why we organise two races in the UK that have become widely known for exceptional organisation and friendliness.

We believe that by providing great running events, runners have something to aim for. These goals and targets, however big or small, will motivate you to ensure continued benefit from all that running has to offer.

Whether it is the Vitality Reading Half Marathon, the Ikano Robin Hood Marathon and Half Marathon or any of the other runs we sponsor around the country, there is an event for everyone, of all abilities.

For more information visit Sweatshop Events


Sweatshop is also one of the founding sponsors of parkrun, an organisation that provides free 5k running events every week in locations all over the UK. These friendly events are the ideal place to start running or to help increase your performance. For more information visit parkrun

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