Almost half of recreational runners are at risk of injury within one year, a new study has found.
Researchers from the University of Gothenburg discovered that the risk of incurring injuries relating to knees, calves or Achilles tendons was not affected by age, gender, or running experience.
The team of experts analysed data from more than 200 recreational runners from the Göteborgsvarvet Half Marathon, monitoring them for 12 months.
Participants were aged between 18 and 55, required to have been running recreationally for at least a year, have run an average of at least 15km a week, and have been injury-free for at least six months.
They also completed a training diary, and if they felt any pain, they were examined by a sports doctor.
Over the 12 months, a third of participants were injured, and researchers also took into account those runners who had dropped out over the course of the study due to injury.
"A third of the participants were injured over the course of the study. But if you also take account of the participants who dropped out of the study, it is reasonable to assume that almost half of all recreational runners injure themselves in a year," study leader Jonatan Jungmalm explained.
Of those who were injured, over half had problems with their knees, calves or Achilles tendons, but few injuries were long-lasting.
The researchers also found that those runners who had "relatively weak outer thighs" had a higher risk of injury, and those with "late pronation in their running gait" also had an increased risk.