Preventing Exercise-Associated Collapse Using Online Runner Education: A Randomized, Controlled Trial

David M. Worley, Colleen M. Renier, Theo A. Woehrle, Steven D. Stovitz, Benjamin D. Nelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


OBJECTIVE: To determine whether online exercise-associated collapse (EAC) prevention education decreases medical tent EAC visits among first-time marathoners. DESIGN: A prospective controlled study, with age- and sex-stratified randomization, evaluated rates of medical tent diagnosed EAC among runners randomized to the intervention group and intervention participants, compared with a control group. SETTING: Grandma's Marathon Medical Tent in Duluth, MN, June 2016. PARTICIPANTS: Runners in the 2016 Grandma's Marathon who never previously ran a marathon (n = 2943), randomized into control (n = 1482) and intervention (n = 1461) groups. Intervention participants opened the EAC prevention video (n = 590). INTERVENTIONS: Online EAC education included an introductory webpage and 5-minute professional video describing EAC and prevention. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Medical tent visit with EAC diagnosis. RESULTS: Intervention participants had no decreased likelihood of EAC, compared with controls [odds ratio (OR), 0.88, 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.46-1.69]. Exercise-associated collapse occurred less frequently in those with longer race times (OR, 0.58, 95% CI, 0.43-0.79). Intervention participation was associated with longer race times (OR, 1.12, 95% CI, 1.10-1.23). CONCLUSIONS: Those opening the EAC prevention video and controls had similar EAC rates. Slower running speed was associated with lower EAC rates. Video viewing was a predictor of slower running pace.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)275-278
Number of pages4
JournalClinical journal of sport medicine : official journal of the Canadian Academy of Sport Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2020

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Randomized Controlled Trial


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