Kinetic risk factors of running-related injuries in female recreational runners

Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2018 Oct;28(10):2164-2172. doi: 10.1111/sms.13228. Epub 2018 Jun 28.


Our objective was to prospectively investigate the association of kinetic variables with running-related injury (RRI) risk. Seventy-four healthy female recreational runners ran on an instrumented treadmill while 3D kinetic and kinematic data were collected. Kinetic outcomes were vertical impact transient, average vertical loading rate, instantaneous vertical loading rate, active peak, vertical impulse, and peak braking force (PBF). Participants followed a 15-week half-marathon training program. Exposure time (hours of running) was calculated from start of program until onset of injury, loss to follow-up, or end of program. After converting kinetic variables from continuous to ordinal variables based on tertiles, Cox proportional hazard models with competing risks were fit for each variable independently, before analysis in a forward stepwise multivariable model. Sixty-five participants were included in the final analysis, with a 33.8% injury rate. PBF was the only kinetic variable that was a significant predictor of RRI. Runners in the highest tertile (PBF < -0.27 BW) were injured at 5.08 times the rate of those in the middle tertile and 7.98 times the rate of those in the lowest tertile. When analyzed in the multivariable model, no kinetic variables made a significant contribution to predicting injury beyond what had already been accounted for by PBF alone. Findings from this study suggest PBF is associated with a significantly higher injury hazard ratio in female recreational runners and should be considered as a target for gait retraining interventions.

Keywords: biomechanics; gait analysis; impact loading; injury; running.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Exercise Test
  • Female
  • Gait*
  • Humans
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Risk Factors
  • Running / injuries*