This study reports the first data to demonstrate that life-long regular running in male master athletes results in adaptations of tendon that occurs at different levels including lower advanced glycationend product (AGE) cross-link density, greater tendon MRI signal intensity and increased tendon size. All of these changes can be considered beneficial to the mechanical integrity of the tendon, while in particular the increase in tendon size results in a reduced average tendon stress.
As such, the present study results suggest that life-long regular endurance exercise such as running can counteract the aging process in collagen- rich tissue (tendons, skin) and thereby possibly reduces the risk of tendon injury during running.
Couppé C, Svensson RB, Grosset JF, Kovanen V, Nielsen RH, Olsen MR, Larsen JO, Praet SF, Skovgaard D, Hansen M, Aagaard P, Kjaer M, Magnusson SP.
Age (Dordr). 2014;36(4):9665. doi: 10.1007/s11357-014-9665-9. Epub 2014 Jul 5.