Saturday, May 28, 2011

Women Masters Marathon Runners Getting Faster!

A new study from the University of Burgundy in France suggests that women marathon runners over 40 years old are improving at a faster rate than men.  The authors compared the improvements in finishing times in the New York City Marathon for the top 10 men and women at every age between 20 and 79 from 1980-2009. While performance in the Masters category (over 35) for both sexes improved, women older than 44 years old showed significant improvement while improvement in the men’s group was only apparent in those over 64 years old.  The authors also noted that the gap between men’s and women’s finishing times has remained relatively unchanged during the last decade and conclude that age-related declines in physiological function do not differ between male and female marathoners.  They also speculated that Masters runners in general have not yet reached their limits in marathon performance which seems a pretty safe statement given historical trends. 

Read an abstract of the article here.

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