Age Groups

For larger events such as Otago Champs, South Island Champs and Nationals you enter according to your gender, age and ability.
e.g. M21E, W40B, M12A

An age class normally has three parts;
  • Gender M or W - Men or women. [in Europe they ofter use the prefixes H (men) and D (women)]
  • Age Group.  Based upon the year you were born. Junior classes are the age and below, senior classes age and above with M/W21 being open to any age - as long as you can handle the distance and difficulty. Juniors can run courses for older age groups (run "up") and seniors can run courses for younger age groups (run "down"). Junior age-groups are every 2 years and seniors may be either every 5 or 10 years depending upon the size of the event.
  • Difficulty/Length
    • E - Elite class, only do this if you're mad, fit or REALLY good, usually only used for M/W21 and M/W20
    • A - Championship grade, or the top grade for all other age groups
    • B - Slightly easier and shorter courses
    • C - Like B but even more so...!
    • L or S - Long or Short options but with no difference in difficulty (eg:  W21AS is the same difficulty as W21A, but a shorter course).
Traditionally, beginners would start with C grade courses, then once they start to win that grade, move up to B grade.  B Grade winners would move up to A grade, etc.  
Note that you can be any age to run Elite class, you don't just have to be between 21 and 40 years old - but you have to be able to handle the distance and technical difficulty. 

14 Course Format
These Orienteering NZ rules are valid from 1 January 2008 and replace all previous rules. (Updated October 2014) 16
Course Men                                           Women                  Winning Time            Difficulty
1 M21E                                                                                90-100 min                     Red
2 M20A M21A M35A                         W21E                         70 min                            Red
3 M18A M40A M45A                                                           60 min                            Red
4 M50A                            W20A W21A W35A                     55 min                             Red
5 M55A M21AS M16A          W40A W45A                           50 min                             Red
6 M60A M40AS                    W18A W50A                           45 min                             Red
7 M65A                                W40AS W16A                          45 min                            Red
8 M70A M75A                  W60A W65A                                45 min                            Red
9 M80A M85A                 W70A W75A                                 45 min                            Red
10 M18B M21B M20B M40B            W20B W21B                45 min                           Orange
11 M14A M16B M50B                      W18B W40B                45 min                           Orange
12                                          W14A W16B W50B                40 min                           Orange
13 M12A M14B M21C            W12A W14B W21C                35 min median             Yellow
14 M10A M12B                                 W10A W12B                35 min median             White

13 Course Format
Course       Men                                Women                        Winning Time              Difficulty
1 M21E                                                                                   90-100 min                   Red
2 M20A M21A M35A                              W21E                        70 min                         Red
3 M18A M40A M45A                                                               60 min                         Red
4 M50A M21AS                           W20A W21A W35A W40A    55 min                         Red
5 M55A M60A M16A M40AS              W18A W45A W50A       50 min                         Red
6 M65A                                             W55A W21AS W16A       45 min                         Red
7 M70A M75A                                   W60A W65A W40AS       45 min                         Red
8 M80A M85A                                          W70A W75A             45 min                        Red
9 M18B M21B                                                                           45 min                        Orange
10 M14A M16B M40B                            W18B W21B               45 min                        Orange
11 M50B                                W14A W16B W40B W50B           40 min                          Orange
12 M12A M14B M21C                   W12A W14B W21C              35 min median             Yellow
13 M10A M12B                                    W10A W12B                  35 min median            White

10 Course Format
Course       Men                                       Women                     Winning Time                 Difficulty
1 M21E                                                                                      90-100 min                      Red
2 M20A M21A                                           W21E                        70 min                             Red
3 M18A M40A                                                                             60 min                            Red
4 M16A M50A M21AS                     W18A W20A W21A W40A    45 min                            Red
5 M60A M40AS                                W16A W50A W21AS           45 min                            Red
6 M70A                                               W60A W40AS                   45 min                           Red
7 M18B M21B M14A                                                                    45 min                          Orange
8 M40B                                             W18B W21B W40B W14A    40 min                         Orange
9 M12A M14B M21C                         W12A W14B W21C              35 min median            Yellow
10 M10A M12B                                 W10A W12B                         35 min median            White