Physical activity-related injuries among university students: A multicentre crosssectional study in China

Yang Gao, Weicong Cai, Lijie Gao, Jingjing Wang, Jiehui Liang, Heather H M KWOK, Cunxian Jia, Liping Li*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)
33 Downloads (Pure)


Objectives This study aimed to investigate the epidemiological characteristics and preliminarily explore possible risk factors of physical activity-related injury (PARI) occurrences among Chinese university students via a multicentre mixed survey. Design Cross-sectional study. Participants A total of 4758 undergraduates graded 1-3 in nine universities in three Chinese cities were enrolled via cluster random sampling and completed the selfadministered online questionnaires during March and April 2017. Main outcome measures PARI in the past 12 months. Results Of the 4758 participants, 1081 sustained PARI in the past 12 months, with an overall PARI incidence rate of 22.7% (27.3% (367/1343) in males and 20.9%(714/3415) in females). Around one-quarter of the injured (26.4%) suffered from PARI over at least three episodes. More than half of the injured subjects experienced physical activity (PA) absenteeism and sought medical attention. All PA indicators were significantly and positively associated with PARI, with a frequency of sports and leisure-time vigorousintensity PA (VPA) participation being the strongest (adjusted OR: 1.079, 95% CI: 1.018 to 1.144). Moreover, males (OR=1.199), Shantou students (OR=4.239), year 1 students (OR=1.287), university and other sports team members (OR=1.717-2.360) and those with insufficient sleep time (OR=1.262-1.333) were also at a higher risk of PARI. Conclusions PARI is prevalent among university students in China. The frequency of sports and leisure-time VPA participation was most strongly associated with PARI among all PA indicators. These data can inform future programmes for injury intervention among university students. Safety issues should also be emphasised when promoting PA among the public to reduce PARI.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere021845
JournalBMJ Open
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2018

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Medicine(all)


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