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Breaking the myths of competition: a cross-sectional analysis of injuries among CrossFit trained participants
  1. Yuri Feito1,
  2. Evanette Burrows2,
  3. Loni Tabb2,
  4. Kerri-Anne Ciesielka2
  1. 1Exercise Science and Sport Management, Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw, Georgia, USA
  2. 2Dornsife School of Public Health, Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Yuri Feito; yfeito{at}


Objectives The purpose of this study was to examine the injury rates of individuals engaged in CrossFit training and examine the risk of injury associated with competition.

Study design Cross-sectional analysis.

Methods Descriptive statistics, including injury incidence and rates, were examined for individuals reporting participation in a CrossFit sanctioned competition between 2013 and 2017. To examine the odds of being injured, we considered logistic regression models, where the primary independent measure was participation length—individual measures of interest included age, sex, body mass index, CrossFit affiliation and competition status.

Results 3049 individuals completed the survey (60% completion rate). All competitors, regardless of competition level, had similar incidence of injury (χ2=1.1, p=0.571). For those who reported competing, our calculated injury rate was 0.21–0.54 injuries per 1000 training hours, while for those not competing, the injury rate was calculated as 0.39–1.30 injuries per 1000 training hours. Logistic regression demonstrated short length of participation in CrossFit training as the main factor associated with the odds of being injured (OR=1.82; 95% CI: 1.15 to 2.92). Additionally, training at an official CrossFit affiliate appeared to have a protective effect from injury (OR=0.85; 95% CI: 0.65, 1.10).

Conclusion Our findings provide evidence of the low risk of injury related to these events. Moreover, these findings support the notion that musculoskeletal injuries may be the result of poor progression plans, which may be minimised by participating in an official CrossFit affiliate.

  • injury
  • training
  • athlete
  • sports & exercise medicine

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  • Contributors YF conceived and collected all data for the study. EB, K-AC and LT conducted data analysis. YF drafted the manuscript and EB, K-AC and LT edited the manuscript. All authors agree on the final version of the manuscript.

  • Funding This study was not funded by any external sources. This project was partially funded by a professional development grant from the Wellstar College of Health and Human Services at Kennesaw State University.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Ethics approval The Kennesaw State University Institutional Review Board approved all aspects of this study (IRB #13-167).

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

  • Data availability statement Data are available upon reasonable request.

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