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The Role of Environmental Conditions on Marathon Running Performance in Men Competing in Boston Marathon from 1897 to 2018


Nikolaidis, Pantelis T; Di Gangi, Stefania; Chtourou, Hamdi; Rüst, Christoph Alexander; Rosemann, Thomas; Knechtle, Beat (2019). The Role of Environmental Conditions on Marathon Running Performance in Men Competing in Boston Marathon from 1897 to 2018. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 16(4):614.

Abstract

This study investigated the effects of weather conditions on male performance during the Boston Marathon from 1897 to 2018. A total of 383,982 observations from 244,642 different finishers were analysed using Generalized Additive Mixed Models. All runners, annual top 100 finishers and annual top ten finishers were considered. Weather conditions, on race day, were: average air temperature (°C), precipitations (mm), wet-bulb globe temperature (WBGT) (°C), wind speed (km/h), wind direction (N, S, W, E) and pressure (hPa). These effects were examined in multi-variable models with spline smooth terms in function of calendar year. Temperature, when increasing by 1 °C, was related to worsened performance for all groups (i.e., by 00:01:53 h:min:sec for all finishers, < 0.001). Wind coming from the West, compared to wind coming from other directions, was the most favourable for performance of all groups of finishers. Increasing precipitations worsened performances of top 100 (estimate 00:00:04 h:min:sec, < 0.001) and top 10 finishers (estimate 00:00:05 h:min:sec, < 0.001). Wind speed, when increasing by 1 km/h, was related to worsened performance for all finishers (estimate 00:00:19 h:min:sec, < 0.001), but not for top 100 group, where performances were 00:00:09 h:min:sec faster, < 0.001. Pressure and WBGT were examined in uni-variable models: overall, performances worsened as pressure and WBGT increased. Our findings contributed to the knowledge about the effect of weather conditions on performance level in male marathon runners.

Abstract

This study investigated the effects of weather conditions on male performance during the Boston Marathon from 1897 to 2018. A total of 383,982 observations from 244,642 different finishers were analysed using Generalized Additive Mixed Models. All runners, annual top 100 finishers and annual top ten finishers were considered. Weather conditions, on race day, were: average air temperature (°C), precipitations (mm), wet-bulb globe temperature (WBGT) (°C), wind speed (km/h), wind direction (N, S, W, E) and pressure (hPa). These effects were examined in multi-variable models with spline smooth terms in function of calendar year. Temperature, when increasing by 1 °C, was related to worsened performance for all groups (i.e., by 00:01:53 h:min:sec for all finishers, < 0.001). Wind coming from the West, compared to wind coming from other directions, was the most favourable for performance of all groups of finishers. Increasing precipitations worsened performances of top 100 (estimate 00:00:04 h:min:sec, < 0.001) and top 10 finishers (estimate 00:00:05 h:min:sec, < 0.001). Wind speed, when increasing by 1 km/h, was related to worsened performance for all finishers (estimate 00:00:19 h:min:sec, < 0.001), but not for top 100 group, where performances were 00:00:09 h:min:sec faster, < 0.001. Pressure and WBGT were examined in uni-variable models: overall, performances worsened as pressure and WBGT increased. Our findings contributed to the knowledge about the effect of weather conditions on performance level in male marathon runners.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, 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:20 February 2019
Deposited On:07 Jun 2019 14:19
Last Modified:01 Jul 2019 12:34
Publisher:MDPI Publishing
ISSN:1660-4601
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16040614
PubMed ID:30791523

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