The Risk of ACL injuries to the Female Athlete

The Risk of ACL injuries to the Female Athlete 735 490 Jennifer Lane

Female Athletes are 8 times more likely to injure their ACL’s than their male counterparts.

The ACL or Anterior Cruciate Ligament is a critical ligament in all sports involving cutting, sudden changes in directions and sudden stops and decelerations. Why are females more likely to injure this ligament? There are many different reasons including higher center of gravity, more laxity in ligaments, wider hips, slower reflex time, changes in estrogen levels and a greater quadricep to hamstring strength ratio. The good news is that the evidence shows that when female athletes follow a specific training and conditioning protocol, they can significantly reduce the likelihood of an ACL injury. The protocols include proper leg muscle strength training, proper balance and speed training, proper coaching on how to jump and land with bent knees and proper footwear and orthotics as needed. More specifically, plyometric and speed exercises showed to be most effective in reducing ACL injury. Here is a video of 7 excellent exercises for all young athletes to work on.

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