Stay Active, Stay Injury-Free (Part II)

April 14, 2007

2. ACL Tears

Why and How?

First let’s refresh our knowledge on knee structure:

Your anterior cruciate ligament, aka ACL, surrounds your knee and connects your thigh to your shin. It is most apt to be injured when a pivoting motion goes awry — say, when you lunge for the ball during a tennis game or hit a mogul the wrong way when you’re skiing. Women are particularly prone to painful ACL tears, which happen when leg muscles aren’t strong enough to protect the delicate ligaments.

Prevention & Treatment

One way to prevent this to happen is to strengthen our quadriceps and hamstrings (the muscles in the front and back of our thighs, respectively), with running, biking and stair climbing; for best results, combine any one of these with lower-body builders such as squats and lunges. Again, always remind ourselves not to push ourselves too hard until injury happens.

If you feel pain around your knees after exercising, consider seeing a doctor or physical therapist. ACL tears can be prevented if strains are caught early. If you do tear a ligament, surgery may be needed. So let’s take good care of ourselves! 🙂


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