Injury patterns and rates of Costa Rican CrossFit® participants - a retrospective study

Guillermo Escalante 1 , Chris R. Gentry 1 , Ben D. Kern 2 , Gregory R. Waryasz 3
1 California State University San Bernardino, USA
2 University of Louisiana Lafayette, USA
3 Massachusetts General Hospital Division of Sports Medicine, USA


CrossFit® has been defined as a constantly varied, high intensity, functional movement strength/conditioning program that has seen a large increase in popularity. Few studies have specifically investigated either injury patterns, injury incidence (per 1000 hours), and/or injury prevalence sustained in the sport.
Material and Method. Eighty-eight males (31.3 ± 8.4 yrs, 1.74 ± 0.06 m, 79.45 ± 12.02 kg) and 71 females (31.3 ± 9.1 yrs, 1.62 ± 0.07 m, 60.75 ± 9.37 kg) filled the survey to completion and were included in this investigation. The survey covered demographics, length of time performing CrossFit®, average number of days per week/minutes per workout performing CrossFit®, injuries obtained during CrossFit® within the last 12 months, and specific characteristics of injuries sustained. This was a descriptive survey study.
Results. Participants reported an average of 4.3 ± 0.9 CrossFit® workouts per week at an average of 1.19 ± 0.37 hours per workout. More than half of the participants (50.3%) reported only doing CrossFit® as their mode of exercise; the other 49.7% reported doing sports such as running/swimming/weightlifting. Seventyfour participants reported 127 CrossFit® related injuries, yielding an injury prevalence of 46.5% and an estimated incidence of 3.3 per 1000 hours. Of the 127 injuries reported, the most commonly injured body parts were the shoulder (33.1%), low back (18.1%), knees (12.5%), wrists (10.2%), and elbows (5.5%). Only 1 case of rhabdomyolysis (0.8%) was reported. There was a significant relationship between getting injured and length of time in doing CrossFit® (p < 0.01) and getting injured and participating in CrossFit® competitions (p = 0.02).
Conclusion. The injury incidence rates in this study are similar to those reported in other CrossFit® and weightlifting studies and less than those reported in American football and soccer studies. Participants that compete in CrossFit® competitions and have been doing CrossFit® for longer periods of time are also more likely to sustain an injury related to CrossFit®.

Key words:

crossfit, injury rate, weightlifting, injury prevalence

Full article:

Injury patterns and rates of Costa Rican CrossFit® participants - a retrospective study


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