Plogging: The Swedish Running Trend Taking Tenerife by Storm

plogging - new trend

Runners are taking to the streets and mountains of Tenerife in an attempt to save the environment.

Running is held in high regard as being one of the healthiest (and cheapest) sports to participate in. Great for cardio and a fantastic way to see your town, running is the perfect way to stay fit. However, a new trend has originated in Sweden called Plogging which combines running with picking up litter. This eco-friendly pastime is called Plocka Upp in Swedish and has gained popularity amongst sport enthusiasts eager to do their part for the environment. It is so popular that simply typing the word ‘Plogging’ into Google brings up gigantic 1,190 000 results! 

Tag #PloggingCanarias and join the movement! Tag us @canaryislandsgreen on Instagram and we re-post you!


Plogging is the eco conscious action of jogging and picking up litter at the same time. It originated from a realisation that Erik Ahlström had back in 2016 on his daily commute to work in Sweden. It dawned on him that he was seeing the same piles of trash left on the curbside for weeks on end. No one was cleaning up the roads and pavements leading to the litter posing a possible threat to wildlife and natural habitats. 

Ahlström decided it was time to clear up this litter in a bid to create a nicer living space as well as protecting the environment. This grew into a daily habit which then caught on amongst other locals and the concept of ‘Plogging’ was born. 

Today, it has become a global trend allowing sports enthusiasts the opportunity to do their bit for the environment and keep their local spaces clean. Even world leaders such as India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi enjoy indulging in the pastime. 


Plogging has also reached the shores of the Canary Islands and groups of people are enjoying organised litter picking hikes and runs all in the name of Plogging. In Tenerife, Canary Run recently collaborated with our Canary Green team to host the first large scale plogging event down in the southern town of La Caleta.

The rugged mountainside provided the perfect terrain on which to hunt for hidden litter. Breathtaking 360º coastal views showcased the island’s natural beauty as the ploggers took to the hills, gloves on and trash bags in hand. The event experienced an impressive turnout of Tenerife residents from all corners of the world, all eager to clean up the Canary Islands. 

There is even a hashtag for the Plogging community in the Canary Islands #PloggingCanarias which allows Instagram and Twitter users the chance to see first hand the success of this trend and the positive impact it is having here in the islands. 


It is very easy to start Plogging. All you need is a pair of comfortable shoes to run or walk in, a plastic trash bag and some protective gloves. Anytime you see a piece of litter you stop your exercise and collect the litter. At the end, you carefully dispose of the rubbish collected, being sure to recycle anything that can be recycled by your local council. 

If you want to get involved with future plogging events here in the Canary Islands, be sure to follow the hashtag #PloggingCanarias. However, if you are abroad, check local forums for a group to join or set an example and host your own event. 

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