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The nature and prevalence of injury during CrossFit training

Hak, Paul Taro MBChB, MRCS; Mr1; Hodzovic, Emil MBChB; Dr2; Hickey, Ben MBChB, MRCS; Mr1

The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: November 22, 2013 - Volume Publish Ahead of Print - Issue - p
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000000318
Original Investigation: PDF Only

ABSTRACT CrossFit is a constantly varied, high intensity, functional movement strength and conditioning program which has seen a huge growth in popularity around the world since its inception twelve years ago. There has been much criticism as to the potential injuries associated with CrossFit training including rhabdomyolysis and musculoskeletal injuries. However to date no evidence exists in the literature to the injures and rates sustained. The purpose of this study was to determine the injury rates and profiles of CrossFit athletes sustained during routine CrossFit training. An online questionnaire was distributed amongst international CrossFit online forums. Data collected included general demographics, training programs, injury profiles and supplement use. A total of 132 responses were collected with 97 (73.5%) having sustained an injury during CrossFit training. A total of 186 injuries were reported with 9 (7.0%) requiring surgical intervention. An injury rate of 3.1 per 1000 hours trained was calculated. No incidences of rhabdomyolysis were reported. Injury rates with CrossFit training are similar to that reported in the literature for sports such as Olympic weight-lifting, power-lifting and gymnastics and lower than competitive contact sports such as rugby union and rugby league. Shoulder and spine injuries predominate with no incidences of rhabdomyolysis obtained. To our knowledge this is the first paper in the literature detailing the injury rates and profiles with CrossFit participation.

1Specialist Registrar, All Wales Trauma and Orthopaedic Training Program, Cardiff, UK.

2Foundation Trainee, All Wales Training Program, Cardiff, UK.

Corresponding Author: Mr. Paul Taro Hak, 23 Rowsby Court, Cardiff, CF23 8FG, UK. Tel: 07980 333 737,

No industry or other funding has been accepted for this publication. The authors also disclose no conflicts of interest. The results of the present study do not constitute endorsement of any product by the authors or the NSCA.

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