Tell me please if need to use any article before the word injury in the following context.

If you deadlift the way you do, the risk of (an) injury is extremely high.

I am confused because the Cambridge Dictionary says that the word can be both countable and uncountable. Is there any difference in meaning between the options with an article and without?

2 Answers 2


"Injury" can be countable or uncountable depending on context. "An injury" refers to a specific injury to a specific individual. A person can even have multiple different injuries.

"Injury" is considered uncountable when it refers to a generalized condition in the abstract, like "Injury rates among workers", etc.

Since your sentence starts out, "if you deadlift the way you do, ...", you should probably say, "the risk of an injury ...", because you are talking about the risk of an injury to a specific person ("you").

However, if you were writing some kind of formal legal document, it might be better to write, "Deadlifting incorrectly can create a high risk of injury." That sentence is more generalized and impersonal.

But the difference is subtle, and your sentence is acceptable either way (with or without the article).


The word injury there refers to the notion of becoming injured, not to a specific injury of some kind, as an could imply.

Risk of injury = chance of getting hurt

  • Are both of my sentences correct? Do you think there is the difference between the two? Dec 25, 2018 at 17:51
  • Both are grammatical. There is no practical difference in meaning: change the way you deadlift.
    – TimR
    Dec 25, 2018 at 23:56

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