The best ways to attach a race bib

Updated April 17, 2017

Whether running a 5k or marathon, chances are that a race bib is one of the necessities required to compete. The bib displays the number that allows race organisers to identify racers and track their progress. Without the race bib, confusion may distract from the race experience. To prevent this problem, competitors must attach the race bib correctly.


The most secure way to attach a race bib would be to attach it to a shirt. The racer should fasten the bib in the centre of the shirt's chest area. If a runner is wearing only a sports bra or no shirt at all, another spot to attach the race bib is on one leg of the shorts. The racing bib should be attached to the pant leg both securely and visibly.

Belt Holders

If trousers and shirts aren't options, the racer could consider an elastic belt holder. These holders offer attachment points for a race bib. Many options are available, ranging from the basic belt to belts with pockets capable of carrying any item from a cell phone to carbohydrate gels. Prices for these belts range from £5 to £13. Race belts are available at race expos, online retailers and sporting goods stores.


Some people choose to pin their race bib on their backside. This technique may distract other runners. It also may result in the runner being thrown out, if a member of the race organisation doesn't see the bib from the front. In the event that the racers are photographed, a nonvisible race number may make locating photographs of the runner difficult. Another important step is to ensure that all information requested on the back of the bib is filled out. Sometimes race organisers request medical information to be placed on the bib to protect the runner if an emergency occurs.


Rules are another consideration before the race. Some races dictate where the bib should be placed. Sometimes race organisers have timing chips that track race times embedded in the back of race bibs. Runners must be careful to avoid damaging these chips. If using safety pins, four safety pins should be used at all the bib's corners. This placement ensures that the bib stays put while you are running. Some runners keep extra safety pins handy. First-time racers may find it less stressful to attach their bib the day before the race.

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About the Author

Elizabeth Streeter has been writing professionally since 2000. She specializes in subjects ranging from how to live a happier life to potentially harmful food and drug-related interactions. Streeter has written for "Family Circle," "Woman's Day," "Natural Health" and "Fitness." Streeter holds a Bachelor of Science in nutrition science from Auburn University and is currently working towards a Master of Arts in psychology.