Truth be told, running of the bulls requires a lot more than a flagrant disregard for your personal safety.
Physical fitness, the ability to think fast on your toes, and knowing what to expect are all vital pieces to the bull-running survival puzzle. If you checked out our 5 resources to prepare for the bull run you should be well versed in the history and tragedies surrounding San Fermin but here is a little refresher:
During the festival, running of the bulls starts at 8 am each morning at the bull’s sleeping corrals. The purpose of the run is to usher the bulls from Santa Domingo street, through Pamplona’s historic quarter and into the bullring where they will be killed that afternoon. Fearless participants select a stretch of the route and start to run in front of the bulls as they approach. Once they are exhausted or fear the bulls are getting too close, they veer off to one side.
Escaping death and letting the bulls pass. (PAUSE for dramatic effect)
As you can imagine these bulls run pretty darn fast, completing the 825 meter slippery course in less than three minutes. The faster and more physically fit you are, the longer you will able to run and maintain a safe distance between the powerful beasts behind you. All the research in the world won’t prepare for the physical task of running for your life.
Luckily, there’s an app for that.
The Bull Running Trainer App by the creative team at Kukuxumusu aims to get you in bull running shape to decrease your chances of getting trampled. The app was created in partnership with Pamplona City Hall and gives users the ability to “measure their fitness and speed against the bulls.”
“Bullrunning Trainer includes advice, statistical information, a personal risk test and a novel simulator that allows you to measure yourself against the bulls and to do some training to take part in the running of the bulls, no matter where you are located around the world.”
Aside from being ridiculously useful and jam-packed with everything San Fermin, the app is kinda cool. The simulator enables you to pretend that you are being chased by a bull, tracking your speed and position using the phone’s GPS.
‘Test your physical fitness by simulating that you are running in the Pamplona running of the bulls. Measure your speed against the real speed of the bulls and try to run the longest possible distance in front of their horns before making a safe exit. If you have managed to combine bravery and prudence in equal measure, you will receive a higher score. You can then share your success in Facebook and Twitter.’
The app is currently on Itunes and totally free. Of course the app can’t simulate hundreds of people possibly pushing you and a bull breathing down your neck but it’s a clever idea. I’ll be incorporating this app into my training routine to prepare for running of the bulls.
What other things can I do to increase my chances of survival? Any programs or tips for learning how to sprint for your life?