New to Orienteering

Orienteering is an exciting outdoor adventure sport suitable for all ages and fitness levels, that exercises mind and body. The aim is to navigate between checkpoints or controls marked on a special orienteering map. There is no set route so the skill and fun come from trying to find the best way to go and from finding the checkpoints. In competitive orienteering, the challenge is to complete the course in the quickest time, but as a newcomer you can walk, jog or run as you wish.

To get a quick understanding of the sport, check out this 5 minute video from South London Orienteers.

For more information about navigating your way around a course check out Orienteering Maps, Using a Compass, and Getting Lost… and Found Again. Also see this playlist from South London Orienteers that follows their introductory video above covering various orienteering techniques including:

  • Setting the map
  • Using the compass
  • Attack points
  • Aiming off
  • Large contour features
  • Route choice
  • Intricate contours
  • Simplification

If you are thinking of taking part in an event, then head over to Attending an Event and Completing a Course to see what to expect.

If you want a gentle introduction away from an organised event, you might want to try a Permanent Orienteering Course or a Virtual Orienteering Challenge.

For more resources you might like to check out the excellent series of videos from Manchester & District Orienteering Club (MDOC) that progress through Getting Started, Getting Going, Getting Confident and Getting Faster.