This study analyses the sporting habits of runners participating in short-distance urban running events to identify groups with different motivations towards the practice of endurance running and participation in urban running events. A sample consisting of 937 participants in the Valencia running circuit was interviewed using a questionnaire consisting of a scale of 22 items to analyse their motives for participating in popular races. An exploratory and confirmatory factorial analysis was carried out to check the validity of the instrument, and the analysis identified the following four factors into which the indicators were grouped: psychological and physical motives (3 items), social motives and interest in running events (5 items), occupation of time and social recognition (6 items) and competitive and material motives (3 items). Subsequently, a cluster analysis was performed by combining hierarchical and non-hierarchical methods, and the analysis identified the following three groups of runners with different characteristics: individual hedonists (n = 276), enthusiasts (n = 312) and socializing hedonists (n = 349). Enthusiastic runners consider most motives important when participating in running events, individual hedonists consider individual psychological and physical motives important, and socializing hedonists consider personal and social motives and interest in sport important. Variables related to age, educational level, annual income level, frequency of running, how the individuals went out to run and the level of the runners contributed to differentiating the identified groups. The results confirm the heterogeneous nature of urban runners.
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