Preparation and training strategies in older athletes participating at the Pan Pacific Masters Games

Maria Constantinou, Peter R J Reaburn, Ryan McDonald, Mark Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting AbstractResearchpeer-review


Introduction and Aims: The Pan Pacific Masters Games attract more than 10,000 participants over the age of 30 years biennially. Previous injury surveillance at the 2014 Games found 4,395 medical encounters in 12,135 participants1. As the Games structure requires athletes to participate in multiple events over a short period, targeted preparation and training is warranted to minimize injuries during the Games. Information about athlete preparation/training strategies for these Games is scarce. The aim of this study was to identify preparation/training strategies in Masters athletes to improve advice to future Games participants.

Methods: Participants at the 2016 Pan Pacific Masters Games were emailed a survey the day before commencement of the Games. Participants were asked to report when they began preparation, training strategies, injury history and status prior to the Games.

Results: There were 11,953 Games participants. Approximately 1,100 participants responded to the survey (62% female). 894 (79%) athletes reported regular participation in their main sport. 99 (9%) athletes reported commencing preparation one month prior to the Games, 352 (32%) between 1-6 months and 514 (46%) more than 6 months, while 144 (13%) athletes did no preparation. 769 (71%) athletes reported they usually/always undertook warm-up activities, including stretching (925, 87%)), sports specific skills (637, 60%) running/jogging (561, 52%) and strengthening (234, 22%). 482 (45%) athletes reported injuries in the previous 12 months, with their most significant injury being to the lower limb (271, 57%) and/or a muscle injury (127, 30%). 215 (60%) athletes with an injury reported incomplete recovery at Games commencement.

Conclusion: The results indicate athletes participating at Masters Games may be inadequately prepared for the competition demands. Athletes participating with existing injuries may contribute to the high number of medical encounters and injuries previously reported during these Games1. An interesting finding was the reported low use of strengthening warm-up activities in the Games preparation/training period and the high number of pre-existing muscle injuries. It appears from these findings that older athletes may benefit from preparation/training advice for participation at Masters Games, including adequate rehabilitation from previous injury and optimal injury prevention strategies, including strengthening exercises specific to their sport.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e9
Number of pages1
JournalPhysical Therapy in Sport
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2017
EventSecond World Congress of Sports Physical Therapy - Belfast, United Kingdom
Duration: 6 Oct 20177 Oct 2017
Conference number: 2nd


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