Objective: Limited research has been conducted into the effect of load carriage on discomfort and injuries. This study aimed to determine the skeletal discomfort for part-time soldiers who completed a 1-hour field march carrying 24 kg. Methods: A postmarch comfort questionnaire was completed by 127 participants, with exercise withdrawals and postmarch injuries also recorded. Results: The foot was subjectively rated as the most uncomfortable skeletal region. Females reported hip discomfort to be significantly greater than males. The military experience of participants had no difference on the mean perceived comfort ratings of any of the measured regions. Finally, only one participant withdrew from the exercise, with no participants reporting a load carriage injury in the 2 to 3 days proceeding the exercise Conclusions: This study concludes that although a 1-hour period of load carriage causes noteworthy discomfort it is not sufficient to result in noncompletion of a military exercise or cause injury.
Birrell, S. A., & Haslam, R. A. (2009). Subjective skeletal discomfort measured using a comfort questionnaire following a load carriage exercise. Military Medicine, 174(2), 177–182. https://doi.org/10.7205/MILMED-D-58-7308