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Online multifactorial prevention programme has no effect on the number of running-related injuries: a randomised controlled trial
  1. Tryntsje Fokkema1,
  2. Robert-Jan de Vos2,
  3. John M van Ochten1,
  4. Jan A N Verhaar2,
  5. Irene S Davis3,
  6. Patrick J E Bindels1,
  7. Sita M A Bierma-Zeinstra1,2,
  8. Marienke van Middelkoop1
  1. 1Department of General Practice, Erasmus MC, University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
  2. 2Department of Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine, Erasmus MC, University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
  3. 3Spaulding National Running Center, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Harvard Medical School, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA
  1. Correspondence to Tryntsje Fokkema, Department of General Practice, Erasmus MC, P.O. Box 2040, 3000 CA Rotterdam, The Netherlands; t.fokkema{at}


Objective To examine the effect of a multifactorial, online injury prevention programme on the number of running-related injuries (RRIs) in recreational runners.

Methods Adult recreational runners who registered for a running event (distances 5 km up to 42.195 km) were randomised into the intervention group or control group. Participants in the intervention group were given access to the online injury prevention programme, which consisted of information on evidence-based risk factors and advices to reduce the injury risk. Participants in the control group followed their regular preparation for the running event. The primary outcome measure was the number of self-reported RRIs in the time frame between registration for a running event and 1 month after the running event.

Results This trial included 2378 recreational runners (1252 men; mean [SD] age 41.2 [11.9] years), of which 1196 were allocated to the intervention group and 1182 to the control group. Of the participants in the intervention group 37.5% (95% CI 34.8 to 40.4) sustained a new RRI during follow-up, compared with 36.7% (95% CI 34.0 to 39.6) in the control group. Univariate logistic regression analysis showed no significant difference between the intervention and control group (OR 1.08; 95% CI 0.90 to 1.30). Furthermore, the prevention programme seemed to have a negative impact on the occurrence of new RRIs in the subgroup of runners with no injuries in the 12 months preceding the trial (OR 1.30; 95% CI 0.99 to 1.70).

Conclusion A multifactorial, online injury prevention programme did not decrease the total number of RRIs in recreational runners.

Trial registration number NTR5998.

  • Running
  • injury prevention
  • prevention

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  • Contributors All authors made substantial intellectual contributions to the development of the study protocol, interpretation of the results and drafting of the manuscript. TF performed the data collection and data analysis and wrote the manuscript, under supervision of MvM and R-JdV. The trial was coordinated by MvM. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

  • Funding The INSPIRE trial was funded by the Netherlands Organization for Health Research and Development (ZonMW), grant number 536001001.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Ethics approval The INSPIRE trial was approved by the Medical Ethical Committee of the Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam, Netherlands (MEC-2016-292) and the study is registered in the Dutch Trial Register (NTR5998).

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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