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Relationship between age and elite marathon race time in world single age records from 5 to 93 years


Knechtle, Beat; Assadi, Hervé; Lepers, Romuald; Rosemann, Thomas; Rüst, Christoph Alexander (2014). Relationship between age and elite marathon race time in world single age records from 5 to 93 years. BMC Sports Science, Medicine and Rehabilitation, 6:31.

Abstract

BACKGROUND: The aims of the study were (i) to investigate the relationship between elite marathon race times and age in 1-year intervals by using the world single age records in marathon running from 5 to 93 years and (ii) to evaluate the sex difference in elite marathon running performance with advancing age. METHODS: World single age records in marathon running in 1-year intervals for women and men were analysed regarding changes across age for both men and women using linear and non-linear regression analyses for each age for women and men. RESULTS: The relationship between elite marathon race time and age was non-linear (i.e. polynomial regression 4(th) degree) for women and men. The curve was U-shaped where performance improved from 5 to ~20 years. From 5 years to ~15 years, boys and girls performed very similar. Between ~20 and ~35 years, performance was quite linear, but started to decrease at the age of ~35 years in a curvilinear manner with increasing age in both women and men. The sex difference increased non-linearly (i.e. polynomial regression 7(th) degree) from 5 to ~20 years, remained unchanged at ~20 min from ~20 to ~50 years and increased thereafter. The sex difference was lowest (7.5%, 10.5 min) at the age of 49 years. CONCLUSION: Elite marathon race times improved from 5 to ~20 years, remained linear between ~20 and ~35 years, and started to increase at the age of ~35 years in a curvilinear manner with increasing age in both women and men. The sex difference in elite marathon race time increased non-linearly and was lowest at the age of ~49 years. KEYWORDS: Boys; Girls; Master runner; Performance; Running; Sex difference

BACKGROUND: The aims of the study were (i) to investigate the relationship between elite marathon race times and age in 1-year intervals by using the world single age records in marathon running from 5 to 93 years and (ii) to evaluate the sex difference in elite marathon running performance with advancing age. METHODS: World single age records in marathon running in 1-year intervals for women and men were analysed regarding changes across age for both men and women using linear and non-linear regression analyses for each age for women and men. RESULTS: The relationship between elite marathon race time and age was non-linear (i.e. polynomial regression 4(th) degree) for women and men. The curve was U-shaped where performance improved from 5 to ~20 years. From 5 years to ~15 years, boys and girls performed very similar. Between ~20 and ~35 years, performance was quite linear, but started to decrease at the age of ~35 years in a curvilinear manner with increasing age in both women and men. The sex difference increased non-linearly (i.e. polynomial regression 7(th) degree) from 5 to ~20 years, remained unchanged at ~20 min from ~20 to ~50 years and increased thereafter. The sex difference was lowest (7.5%, 10.5 min) at the age of 49 years. CONCLUSION: Elite marathon race times improved from 5 to ~20 years, remained linear between ~20 and ~35 years, and started to increase at the age of ~35 years in a curvilinear manner with increasing age in both women and men. The sex difference in elite marathon race time increased non-linearly and was lowest at the age of ~49 years. KEYWORDS: Boys; Girls; Master runner; Performance; Running; Sex difference

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, not refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Institute of General Practice
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2014
Deposited On:13 Aug 2014 14:03
Last Modified:31 Oct 2016 15:34
Publisher:BioMed Central
ISSN:2052-1847
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1186/2052-1847-6-31
PubMed ID:25120915
Permanent URL: https://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-98095

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