The Facts Behind ACL Tears

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The anterior cruciate ligament, more commonly known as the ACL, is a large ligament that connects the upper leg (femur) to the lower leg (tibia). The ACL helps to provide stability with motions such as cutting, pivoting, and changing direction.

Fast Facts

  • Females are 4 to 8 times more likely to tear their ACL compared to males
  • Up to 70% of ACL injuries are actually NON-contact (the athlete plants their foot, pivots to change direction, etc… and as a result of this motion the ACL tears away from both bones)
  • Recovery time for a torn ACL is typically over a year when taking into account surgery, physical therapy and rehabilitation
  • After an ACL injury, most athletes are required to wear a brace when they return to their sport
  • ACL tears are commonly seen in sports where there is frequent cutting and jumping, such as soccer and lacrosse

Preventing ACL Injuries

Knee injuries are a hot topic; there has been a large focus on how to shorten the recovery period after an ACL injury and on how to improve the success of ACL surgeries. However, it is critical to emphasize the prevention of injuries so they don’t occur in the first place.

  • Strengthen the lower body to lower the risk of tearing the ACL
    • Adequate hip strength can prevent the collapsing of the knee
    • Retraining balance will teach the athlete to land correctly
  • Diminish the twisting force of the ACL to possibly reduce injury rates

TMC ACL Services:

  • ACL Return to Play – One-on-one training sessions; the primary goal of this program is that the athlete will return to their sport as safely and quickly as possible.
  • ACL injury prevention – An eight-week training program that aims to prevent injury by strengthening the athletes’ knees, hips, and surrounding muscles. The athlete will work on proper jumping and squatting techniques, as these are two fundamental elements in ACL injury prevention.
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