Garmin is studying the effects of Covid-19 on runners – and it wants your help

Man pausing for a break while running outdoors
(Image credit: Prostock Studio / Shutterstock)

Garmin and the University of Nottingham are working together on a global research project to study the effects of Covid-19 on running, training and recovery – and you can join in.

The Running Through study is open to both runners and walkers from around the world, and will look into the effects of long Covid on fitness symptoms on running performance, the potential impact of running on Covid recovery times, and the potential effects of the illness on training regimens and injuries,

In order to take part, you'll need to be over 18 years old, and although you don't have to own a Garmin wearable like a running watch or heart rate monitor, the data will be richer if you do. You'll also need to agree to share your health data with the company so it can be included in the study.

To sign up, visit and complete the survey form. This will ask you to provide some details about your running habits and overall health, plus any Covid-19 infections you might have had.

Trail runners wearing Garmin Fenix 7 watches

(Image credit: Garmin)

Once the study is done, the results will be made publicly available to help runners better understand the effects of the virus on their training and fitness.

Fitness tracker data

This isn't the only study using data captured by devices like fitness trackers and smartwatches to help us better understand Covid-19. Fitbit is currently conducting its own study in the US and Canada, and aims to build an algorithm to detect signs of the virus before symptoms appear.

The study is still ongoing, but in August 2021, Fitbit reported that it's been able to detect half of Covid-19 infections one day before participants reported their first symptoms, with 70% specificity. We've been in touch with Fitbit to see if there have been any further developments, and will update you when we know more. 

Cat Ellis

Cat is the editor of TechRadar's sister site Advnture. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better)