Top 5 ACL Injury Prevention Tips for Athletes
If you are an athlete or a fan of sports, then you know that when someone has torn their Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL), that is a pretty serious situation. That’s because once you harm this particular part of your knee, although with proper treatment it tends to heal itself within a month, it is now highly-vulnerable to tearing over and over again. This can result in there being irreparable damage that’s done over time.
That’s why it’s best to do all that you can to prevent an ACL injury before it ever happens. And so, we have offered you a list of five things that you can do to significantly lower the risk of experiencing one below:
Warm up and stretch before exercising or playing. No matter what medical professional, trainer or coach you speak with, one thing they are all going to agree on is that it’s absolutely imperative that you make the time to warm up and stretch before you play any kind of sport. Warm ups help to increase blood circulation in your muscles and joints and stretching your hips, thighs and calves will increase the flexibility in those areas.
Strengthen your hips and thighs. One of the best ways to give your knees the kind of support that they need is to strengthen your hips and thighs. You can do this by doing the kinds of exercises that will develop those specific areas of your body. Some of them include squats and lunges. Make sure that they are a part of your daily regimen.
Balance better. Did you know that there are some people who end up injuring their ACL simply because they were literally caught off-balance? Being that good balance is something that you can only develop with practice, it’s important that you first do what you can to maintain good posture. One thing that can help you to do that is to take yoga classes. The next thing that you should do is work on doing things that will increase your stability when you stand. Walk on a balance beam, shoot hoops while standing on a straight line and even try a little juggling.
Train extensively for certain sports. Whether you’re planning to run a marathon or you’re going to participate in a big game, do not wait until the last minute to train. That’s because it’s imperative that you devote no less than four weeks of extensive training before participating in high-impact activities or sports. That will give your body the time it needs to prepare itself from the types of demands that you will be putting on it.
Get your rest. If you were to ask the Texas Orthopedics Sports & Rehabilitation Associates about something that you can do in order to prevent yourself from having an ACL injury, one of the things that’s definitely going to go on their list is that you should get plenty of rest. Rest gives your body the opportunity to rejuvenate itself after you’re finished exercising and playing. For this reason, make sure to get at least six hours of sleep each night and don’t forget to take a day off after a major game or workout session. This is just one more way that you can keep an ACL injury from happening to you.