My homemade parkrun wristband

The first rule of parkrun is surely

Don’t Forget Your Barcode!!!

Only printed versions are accepted, and we all know how fragile paper is. Rain, and sweat (yuck) can ruin a barcode, however, the lovely people at parkrun have formatted the sheet so that we have six barcodes printed off. I laminated mine, and keep a spare in my car, and a spare in The Bloke’s car, just in case I forget mine. It does mean I can’t accept a lift from anyone else (joke! Car sharing is highly encouraged). There are several ways to do this; the pound shops sell clear sticky back plastic, not good for someone with my OCD, and the potential for creating air bubbles. Laminator are now quite cheap, and cutting out the barcodes, and arranging them in an A4 pouch, then cutting them down, is easy enough. Again, my OCD would kick in, if I didn’t get things perfectly straight. I ended up buying some credit card size pouches from Amazon, and they were ridiculously cheap. If any friends reading this would like me to laminate a barcode for them, let me know!

The only problem I have, is that some of my running gear doesn’t have pockets. I initially got round this by putting a barcode on a lanyard, to go round my neck, but I wanted something even more practical – a wristband. 

How did I go about it?

Firstly, I wanted something like a hair ribbon elastic, you know, they can be wristbands, but double up as an emergency hair tie. They had been every where, until I actually wanted some. In the end, I found some shiny ones in Asda. Not ideal, but the beauty is, I can change it whenever I find something better!

So, what did I do?

I took my barcode, and trimmed it down. The parkrun instructions say that the white background is important for scanning. I made sure my barcode fitted in the centre of a 20mm x 50mm box, and cut it out. 

I laminated it in one of the credit card sized pouches. 

I cut out around the barcode, making sure that it was fully sealed.

Using a craft knife, I cut out two slits for the ribbon.

I untied the ribbon, threaded it through the barcode (making sure it didn’t cover the barcode side), and retied it.

Et, voila! One barcode wristband!

The most important question was, did it work? Well, just to be safe, I had one of my ordinary barcodes with me, just in case. It wasn’t needed; the new wristband worked! I’ve used it a couple of times, and so far, so good. It should make summer parkruns far easier to dress for, as I won’t be worrying about pockets. Unless it’s my turn to drive. Doh!



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