Running-related injuries in school-age children and adolescents treated in emergency departments from 1994 through 2007

Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2011 Feb;50(2):126-32. doi: 10.1177/0009922810384719. Epub 2010 Oct 20.


Running for exercise is a popular way to motivate children to be physically active. Running-related injuries are well studied in adults but little information exists for children and adolescents. Through use of the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System database, cases of running-related injuries were selected by using activity codes for exercise (which included running and jogging). Sample weights were used to calculate national estimates. An estimated 225 344 children and adolescents 6 to 18 years old were treated in US emergency departments for running-related injuries. The annual number of cases increased by 34.0% over the study period. One third of the injuries involved a running-related fall and more than one half of the injuries occurred at school. The majority of injuries occurred to the lower extremities and resulted in a sprain or strain. These findings emphasize the need for scientific evidence-based guidelines for pediatric running. The high proportion of running-related falls warrants further research.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Age Factors
  • Athletic Injuries / epidemiology*
  • Athletic Injuries / etiology*
  • Athletic Injuries / therapy
  • Child
  • Emergency Service, Hospital / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Jogging / injuries
  • Lower Extremity / injuries*
  • Male
  • Patient Admission / statistics & numerical data*
  • Running / injuries*
  • Sprains and Strains / epidemiology
  • Sprains and Strains / etiology
  • Time Factors
  • United States / epidemiology