We spoke to CHairYUAN, glasses designer, and founder of Shanghai running crew, Darkrunners.

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I am a glasses designer for my label CHairEYES, a stylist, and founder of night running crew Dark Runner.

How did the Dark Runners begin?

Back in 2009 I fell in love with running and started a running crew. I was watching the movie β€˜Crank’ with my friend and in the movie the lead character had to drink Red Bull to survive. We decided to do the same, got really energized and went out running on Nanpu Bridge. It started from there with a lot of friends wanting to join our team. Eventually I felt the need to expand and started the website.

You run at night. Why?

I guess mainly for safety, but also to maintain a relaxed state.

How many runners in your group?

We’ve got around 30 now including many designers, photographers, stylists and musicians. They only started running when they joined the crew.

Do other similar groups exist in your city?

Before us there was nothing similar, but we’re starting to see more now. We hope this continues!

Do you think groups like Dark Runners are important for communities?

Of course, without a doubt.

What's next for you?

We’ll continue to run. I want to do our site more professionally to encourage more and more people to get running. We now run in Shanghai, Beijing, Hangzhou, Tokyo and Yokohama. Expect more.