The knee is the largest joint in the body, and is subjected to an enormous workload during many sports. That is why the knee is the most frequently injured joint in the human body. The most commonly known knee injuries in sports are the ACL and Meniscus tears.
The main causes of these injuries are sports related, such as a violent twisting of the knee while the foot is fixed or excessive knee twisting. Most often ACL injuries occur when pivoting, cutting or landing from a jump. Majority of sports- related ACL injuries are non- contact injuries like soccer and basketball. Female athletes are known to have a higher risk of ACL injury while competing in competitive sports. Why woman are more prone to ACL injuries is unclear, some experts say it’s due to a combination of theories such as Anatomic differences between men and woman the Q-(quadriceps) Angle the angle at which the femur (upper leg bone) meets the tibia (lower leg bone) this angle is greater in woman then in men it is thought this increased angle places more stress on the knee joint. Muscular imbalances may be another cause, Hamstring/Quadriceps strength imbalances. Most athletes tend to have strong quadriceps and tight hamstrings. A good strength training program along with a stretching program will help to correct these hamstring/quadriceps strength imbalances. A proper training program on jumping and landing technique can reduce the likelihood of an ACL injury.
Meniscus tears occur with a twisting turning or violent bend of the knee while the foot is planted. Basketball, Football and Soccer have high rates of meniscal injuries. Injuries to the medial meniscus are about five times more likely then lateral meniscus tears. An athlete with a meniscus injury who wants to continue sports activities will have to undergo surgery. An injury to the meniscus will almost never heal by itself, due to lack of blood to that area. If you feel you have an ACL or Meniscus tear seek medical attention for further evaluation and treatment.
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