Factors Associated With Lower Limb Injuries in Recreational Runners: A Cross-Sectional Survey Including Mental Aspects and Sleep Quality

Seyed Hamed Mousavi*, Juha M. Hijmans, Hooman Minoonejad, Reza Rajabi, Johannes Zwerver

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

Knowledge about prevalence and etiology of running-related injuries (RRIs) is important to design effective RRI prevention programs. Mental aspects and sleep quality seem to be important potential risk factors, yet their association with RRIs needs to be elucidated. The aims of this study are to investigate the epidemiology of RRIs in recreational runners and the association of mental aspects, sleep, and other potential factors with RRIs. An internet-based questionnaire was sent to recreational runners recruited through social media, asking for personal and training characteristics, mental aspects (obsessive passion, motivation to exercise), sleep quality, perceived health, quality of life, foot arch type, and RRIs over the past six months. Data were analyzed descriptively and using logistic regression. Self-reported data from 804 questionnaires were analyzed. Twenty-five potential risk factors for RRIs were investigated. 54% of runners reported at least one RRI. The knee was the most-affected location (45%), followed by the lower leg (19%). Patellofemoral pain syndrome was the most-reported injury (20%), followed by medial tibial stress syndrome (17%). Obsessive passionate attitude (odds ratio (OR):1.35; 95% confidence interval (CI):1.18-1.54), motivation to exercise (OR:1.09; CI:1.03-1.15), and sleep quality (OR:1.23; CI:1.15-1.31) were associated with RRIs, as were perceived health (OR:0.96; CI:0.94-0.97), running over 20 km/week (OR:1.58; CI:1.04-2.42), overweight (OR:2.17; CI:1.41-3.34), pes planus (OR:1.80; CI:1.12-2.88), hard-surface running (OR:1.37; CI:1.17-1.59), running company (OR:1.65; CI:1.16-2.35), and following a training program (OR:1.51; CI:1.09-2.10). These factors together explained 30% of the variance in RRIs. A separate regression analysis showed that mental aspects and sleep quality explain 15% of the variance in RRIs. The association of mental aspects and sleep quality with RRIs adds new insights into the multifactorial etiology of RRIs. We therefore recommend that besides common risk factors for RRI, mental aspects and sleep be incorporated into the advice on prevention and management of RRIs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)204-215
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of sports science and medicine
Volume20
Issue number2
Early online date5-Mar-2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun-2021

Keywords

  • Running
  • injury
  • etiology
  • epidemiology
  • injury prevention
  • rehabilitation
  • RUNNING-RELATED INJURIES
  • LOWER-EXTREMITY INJURIES
  • RISK-FACTORS
  • BEHAVIORAL-REGULATION
  • PSYCHOSOCIAL FACTORS
  • DISTANCE RUNNERS
  • SPORTS INJURIES
  • EXERCISE
  • PASSION
  • INDEX

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